Powerful men don’t have to be cruel. But too often they are. True today, true thousands of years ago and apparently true in 1920s America. Ben Afflecks latest project Live By Night highlights the cost of the so-called American dream in a stunning yet gritty crime drama. And the poignancy is not lost on me. Nearly a hundred years on, and the type of corruption showcased in this short trailer is not a stretch beyond today’s imagination. And that is just one of the reasons this film is set to be one of 2017s must-sees (being released by Warner Bros in January, pretty much leading the proceedings)
We are often guilty of romanticising the roaring twenties. The music, the style, the hats. Affleck forces us to take another look at this iconic decade and take notice of its seedy underbelly. Playing Joe Coughlin, the son of a cop who naturally rebels against his strict upbringing, Affleck takes on America’s prohibition laws and becomes a rum runner in sunny Florida. As he makes his way up the bad guy hierarchy, coughlin quickly makes enemies. Enemies with guns. And car chases. And more hats. Action packed and fuelled by emotion, it is hard to see how anyone will emerge triumphant at the end of this gripping tale.
With a superb cast and Tarantino’s favourite DP, Robert Richardson, on board for the visuals, Live By Night is going to be a tough act to follow. Good luck all the other 2017 releases!
(If you can’t wait till then though, you should also know that this film is based on Lehane’s 2012 novel ‘Live By Night’. Hashtag spoiler alert!)
Live By Night is out January 2017