Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Drop Review

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Director: Michaël R. Roskam
Cast: Tom Hardy, James Gandolfini, Noomi Rapace
Running Time: 106 Minutes
Rating: 15

A quiet and simple man of God Bob (Tom Hardy) finds himself having to do more than just tend a bar when someone robs the bar he works at. Not only is it a drop bar (a safe place for all illegal activities and money laundering in the area) but it's also owned by the Chechen Mafia who instantly put the blame and responsibility on Bob and his cousin Marv (James Gandolfini). They now have to find the missing money and the perpetrators behind the armed robbery.

The man behind novels turned screenplays Gone Baby Gone, Mystic River and Shutter Island Dennis Lehane is back with a suspenseful thriller. The Drop is based on his short story "Animal Rescue". He is an expert at complex characters who turn out to be more than meets the eye. The Drop is in sentiment and pace concerned similar to Mystic River where the loyalty and equally betrayal of family and friends goes way back and resurfaces just to unshield the characters and leave them vulnerable for the audience to see.

The Drop has received the film festival treatment mainly due to it being Gandolfinis' final film, but it deserves to be. He is exceptional in the film, as he not only returns to the scene of a dodgy business but also makes a moving performance as a man living in the past and reminiscing his glory days of being a bar owner before losing it due to financial problems.

Tom Hardy's performance is exquisite and perfect it's almost hard to put into words. There is an incredible subtlety in his performance -  he and Gandolfini engage in beautiful scenes where a lot is said with very few words, and the silence brings out their hidden characters. Very few actors could emerge themselves in such a specific area like Brooklyn without coming off a offensive with a try too hard accent. The film could do without Noomi Rapace's performance with her off beat accent which is distracting (is she supposed to be Swedish or Russian?!) which is a great shame seeing that there are many Non-American talents in the film that shine as Brooklynites.

It is a character driven thriller that lacks in physical action but is still incredibly suspenseful. The 106 minutes fly by while you anticipate the turns, the backstabbing and the secrets to be unveiled.
It explores the sins and morality of a good person. Is everyday decency enough to justify the bad things one person can make in desperation?

The Drop is released in UK cinemas November 14th.

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