The Town (2010)
Directed by: Ben Affleck
Written by: Ben Affleck, Peter Craig
Starring: Ben Affleck, Blake Lively, Chris Cooper, Jeremy Renner, Jon Hamm, Pete Postlethwaite, Rebecca Hall, Titus Welliver
The Town (2010)
Charlestown, Boston is a breeding ground for criminals. This little neighbourhood churns out more thieves than you can shake a stick at. This is the way Charlestown rolls. If you’re born and bred there, you are destined to a life of stealing.
Doug (Ben Affleck) is one of Charlestown’s finest criminals, and he orchestrates successful bank robberies in Charlestown. His gang include his best mate, Jim, (who he treats as a brother), Albert and Des. These four residents of Charlestown grab their halloween masks and guns and rob another bank in the centre of town. They threaten the workers and make bank manager, Claire (Rebecca Hall), open up the vault. After they raid the bank, Jim thinks it wise to take Claire hostage so they kidnap her in the van and eventually let her go at a nearby beach.
The following day, Jim reveals that he took Claire’s driving licence which has her address on it and it turns out she lives a few blocks away from the gang. Jim wants to sort the situation his way, but Doug convinces him to let him deal with it instead. So Doug tracks Claire down and inadvertantly starts engaging in conversation with Claire down at the laundrette, with Claire unaware that Doug is one of the people who’ve turned her world upsidedown. Doug starts hanging around Claire more and more and they start to fall for one another. But when Jim finds out, he’s concerned that she’ll discover who they are and they’ll face a lifetime in prison.
Doug decides he doesn’t want to be part of the criminal world anymore, and looks to start a new life out of Charlestown with Claire, but Irish gang boss, Fergie (played brilliantly by Pete Posthlethwaite), has other ideas for Doug.
With the FBI on his tail and Fergie forcing him to do another raid, will Doug ever get out of Charlestown alive?
This is a fairly good story with some superb acting from Jeremy Renner as Jim, Pete Postlethwaite, as i’ve already mentioned, as gang boss cum florist Fergie and the other supporting actors. Ben Affleck directed, wrote and starred as the main character in the film, and he does a good job playing the part of Dougie, who is a product of being born and raised in Charletown. Dougie has a casual relationship with Jim’s sister Krista, played by Blake Lively, and the chemistry between them both is well played. The problem with this film is the female lead, Claire, played poorly by Rebecca Hall. This is a woman who’s meant to capture the heart and soul of Doug yet he has more chemistry with his on/off flame, Krista. Whilst the script for Claire isn’t outstanding, there is clearly material to work with, but I feel Rebecca doesn’t convey any emotion in her lines which makes her character dull, boring and flat. You can see Ben’s Doug engaging with her but she might as well be a blowup doll. It’s just a one way relationship unfortunately, which is disappointing as this film has good bits.
A few of the highlights in this film include that of the second robbery shown where the gang are dressed as nuns (see top photo) and are persued by the police. Another enjoyable part is that of Boston Red Sox stadium robbery. You will follow them every step of the way, becoming their eyes and ears.
An enjoyable film which was let down by a certain cast member, but still worthy of a watch.