Out Of The Furnace

*Review based on a free copy provided by Amazon – by it here

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Another effective slow-burner with a terrific cast which managed to slip under the radar. Admittedly, though the film has many more plus than minus points, it would be difficult to market this in such a way to earn a lot of money. It’s a grim little film, filled with ugly characters screwing over life’s unfortunate losers, it’s a revenge thriller, a tale of brotherhood, a tale of loss, a story of the awful lengths we will go to to make ends meet or to hide oneself from past pains.

Bale and Affleck are brothers in a crumbling industrial town – one a homeboy, happy to follow in his father’s factory working ways, the other a military veteran with gambling problems who refuses to settle for a life like his family. Trouble is already brewing when we start, with Affleck’ s character involved in bare knuckle fights to cover debts, fights set up by Willem Defoe. After a fatal car accident, things spiral out of control and Harrelson’ scumbag gangster type character becomes involved.

Aside from the obvious acting talent on display (including others in smaller roles not mentioned – Saldana, Whitaker, Shepard), the director does a decent job of conveying the helplessness and despair of the situations the characters find themselves in, and handles all the tragedy and anguish without sentiment. The grungy soundtrack gives everything an effective, dated mood, a further suggestion of the people and parts of America who are unknowingly past their sell by date. Well worth watching, but don’t expect a pleasant trip.

Have you seen Out Of The Furnace? Let us know in the comments!

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