Director :  Ben Affleck

Producer : Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Davisson, Ben Affleck, Jennifer Todd

Cast : Ben Affleck, Elle Fanning, Brendan Gleeson, Chris Messina, Sienna Miller, Zoe Saldana, Chris Cooper

Genre : Crime/Drama

Release Date : 25 December, 2016

Music Director : Harry Gregson-Williams

Awesome-o-metre :

Revue of LIVE BY NIGHT

Following his directorial success of Argo, Ben Affleck directs and stars in this movie set in Boston during the prohibition as Joe Coughlin a gangster who turned his back on his strict upbringing to a life of crime and smuggling where  he goes up against rival completion, the KK and of course, the law.

Argo was a huge success and Affleck’s intention was to build on that success by directing a deep thriller but sadly this one doesn’t turn out quite as he expected. For one, the character of Joe Coughlin lacked any real charisma and there is this constant feeling that the movie isn’t delivering any real oomph. Maybe it’s just me but I am getting tired of Affleck’s acting style. I think it’s time to show some real versatility and be something different? Joe’s character aside, even the other characters are shallow. Let’s take Zoe Saldana’s character as Graciella Corrales a Cuban rum lord- a role that held so much promise but is somehow relegated to a peripheral afterthought.

However, the movie wasn’t all bad. I particularly enjoyed the rival gang shootout scene. I also enjoyed the car chase between the cops and the escaping bandits because of the ancient cars used which they somehow managed to maneuver like modern vehicles. Another thing I liked was the details in recreating the 1920’s. It was really in-depth and detailed.

One thing I did take away from this movie is that you cannot collect a mobster’s woman and expect to live a happy life…it’s just not possible. Talking about women, Affleck’s character understood that a woman’s heart is as deep as an ocean with no bottom. He learnt that a woman can lie in your bed telling you how much she loves you while plotting your death. I am sure Soma from Big Brother Nigeria can testify to this.

Ben Affleck’s intention was to create a gangster thriller in the mold of Godfather and maybe snatch an Oscar but due to the poor character development will not allow it to be great. Ben Affleck is no doubt a great director exemplified by the car chases and the hotel shoot out but is he an outstanding actor? I have my doubts, so I think it’s best if he just sticks to his directors chair for a while.

Have a great day today!

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