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  • Writer's pictureBenjamin Maio Mackay

Hell or High Water - 4 Stars

This crime thriller has an emotional depth, dark sense of humour and a message to the banks.

A divorced father and his ex-con older brother resort to a desperate scheme in order to save their family's ranch in West Texas.

This movie always intrigued me, it was deemed the indie box-office hit of the year. While director David Mackenzie and writer Taylor Sheridan may be fairly unknown actors Jeff Bridges, Chris Pine and Ben Foster are all major stars. So what attracted them to this indie film? It must’ve been the script, not only is this an action film, but it has a clear message about capitalism/corporation and banks - the messages in the film maybe a little more subtle than Mr Robot - but its still very clear. Sheridan has also crafted likeable characters for both heroes and villains - the line between right and wrong is blurred, making the moral dilemmas complex and interesting.

The acting is also on-point, Jeff Bridges and Gil Birmingham were the stand-outs, but Chris Pine was also fantastic. Ben Foster is being type-cast as the “crazy” and while he is very good at that, I would like to see him stretch his acting muscles.

The soundtrack, cinematography and lighting all enriched the cinematic experience.

Overall a fascinating film, with solid performances and a beautifully crafted script.

4 Stars

Review by Benjamin Maio Mackay

Screening courtesy of Madman Entertainment

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