Hello again ladies and gents, I’ve got another film review for you. So after two other films in the cinema, the final one I watched was Out of the Furnace, a film I’d been wanting to see just because of the hype surrounding Christian Bale and Casey Affleck’s performances. I went in with fluctuating expectations, so was it good or not? Read on and find out.
So the story goes like this:
“Russell and his younger brother Rodney live in the economically-depressed Rust Belt, and have always dreamed of escaping and finding better lives. But when a cruel twist of fate lands Russell in prison, his brother becomes involved with one of the most violent and ruthless crime rings in the Northeast – a mistake that will cost him everything. Once released, Russell must choose between his own freedom, or risk it all to seek justice for his brother.”
Before I continue I just want to say that the first scene in this film is awesome, its terrifying, but awesome nevertheless, okay moving on. I really liked the story and thought that it was very interesting. I liked the relationship between the Baze brothers and their individual stories and how they progress. The story of this film was pretty dramatic, graphic and depressing, part of that reason is not only the character situations but also because of the locations. Russell and Rodney’s story takes place in Crap Town, that’s what I’m calling this place because its dull, sad and not much is going on and it doesn’t feel like people can amount to anything without doing legit work. But if you think that’s bad just wait til you see Shitsville, another location where other bad things take place which is even worse than the last place full of savages and nutjobs doing horrible things. This film reminded me a lot of Prisoners, but whereas that film made me feel uncomfortable and sad, this one gave me a more satisfying story and conclusion.
When it comes to the cast there is a really impressive cast on show and while not everyone is utilized fully, the ones that do stand out are very good. Christian Bale as Russell Baze is great, Russell is a man who is very devoted to his family and has a lot to take care of, but things go from bad to worst after an accident which causes him to lose so many precious things in his life. Bale continues to be a very cool actor as he commits to this role and I like his emotional range. The performance that may overshadow Bale is Casey Affleck as Rodney Baze, Jr., I’ve not seen too many films with Casey in them, but I am now aware that he is an actor I should be paying attention to due to his stellar performance in this film which is very powerful and realistic. At first you question the man’s actions but when you realize what he’s been through and know what’s going on in his head, you begin to understand him and hope that he gets himself together for the sake of not only himself but his family.
Though the stand out person in this film for me Woody Harrelson as Harlan DeGroat. Bloody hell, what a beast! Harlan is such a brute, totally messed up and unpredictable. When he’s around people you don’t know what’s gonna happen and you fear for their lives. I’ve only become a fan of Harrelson in recent years but seeing him in this film makes me wish I’d noticed him years ago, the man is SO good and easily stole the screen time for others. Zoe Saldana as Lena Warren was pretty good, I liked her and she can do crying moments very well. I also like Willem Dafoe as John Petty, he was a typical business man, very serious though he did have some form of compassion for the people he worked with. Forest Whitaker was decent as Wesley Barnes but he wasn’t in the film as much as I thought he’d be. And Sam Shepard as Gerald “Red” Baze, he didn’t move that much but he was good in the film too.
In conclusion Out of the Furnace is a great dramatic thriller with awesome performances from the cast and the story is interesting with grim atmosphere. While I wasn’t totally satisfied with the way the story progressed and the over depressing aura of the film, it is still really good and I recommend it.
Rating: 8/10 (Great performances make this worth a watch)
So have you seen or are going to see Out of the Furnace? Whatever your thoughts are leave them in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review yo! 😀