Bootleggin’ Folk Legends Get Immortalised
This film contained a sure fire mix of ingredients for success. A true story set in prohibition era America headed by Shia LaBeouf and Tom Hardy, supported by Gary Oldman as a tommy gun wielding gangster.
The Bondurant brothers are bootleggers during the early 20th century in Franklin Country Virginia and the film chronicles the good and bad times of these days for the family. The film can flip from love interests between Jack Bondurant (LaBeouf) and an Amish preacher’s daughter to Forrest (Hardy) and a former showgirl (Jessica Chastain) then flip to a gun-toting raid on the brothers’ moonshine making stills. The main conflict arises when a new lawman from Chicago played by Guy Pearce, who deserves an Oscar if they dished Oscars for being terrifying badass baddies comes to town to end the days of free flowing illegal alcohol by ridding the county of bootleggers.
LaBeouf is steadfastly but slowly changing my mind concerning his abilities. I still remember him in Even Stevens and the abysmal fourth Indiana Jones, but along with Disturbia and now Lawless, he is rightfully becoming an acting force to be reckoned with in his own right. All I wish is that he sticks to more adult roles. The other lead in Lawless is Tom Hardy. He brilliantly portrays the patriarch brother within the family Forrest who is so tough, locals created a surrounding legend that he can’t be killed. My only quim about Forrest is his accent. Hardy plays the accent so strong that Forrest is harder to understand that Bane was in The Dark Knight Rises.
Aesthetically, the world created by John Hillcoat is both immersive and impressive. The real feeling and grittiness of the film are what pleases the most. Both in violence and tenderness, the film feels real.
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