2 items from 2014
There is something joyous about Bill Murray in a bad mood from Ghostbusters through Groundhog Day to this comedy drama where he also brings stirring depths to the titular Vincent. It's a film cut to fit by indie writer/director Theodore Melfi and in playing to the strengths of his star, he manages to spin a rather obvious story into a fresh and edgy coming-of-age yarn.
Jaeden Lieberher features as 12-year-old Oliver, an efficiently pintsized straight-man who moves in next door to Vin with his adoptive mother Maggie (played with surprisingly gentle humour by Melissa McCarthy). Maggie works long shifts at the hospital and turns to Vin in desperation when she needs a last-minute babysitter; desperate, because with his bitter sarcasm, penchant for booze, gambling habit »
Hollywood would have to freeze over before the Catholic Church agreed to canonize the drinking, gambling, cussing old coot Bill Murray plays in Theodore Melfi’s sweet-and-sour first feature, “St. Vincent.” Even so, this refreshingly unorthodox tragicomedy mounts a pretty convincing case that sometimes role models arrive in disguise — as they do here for the pic’s preteen hero. , though Melfi’s instinct to find and accentuate the memorable character’s redeeming qualities steers this Oct. 10 Weinstein Co. release from “Bad Babysitter” realm into more solidly commercial heart-tugging territory.
Who but Murray could have played Vincent, a drunken curmudgeon who somehow manages to seem all the more lovable with each poor life decision he makes? Vincent lives alone, except for his grumpy-looking Persian cat Felix, and tolerates the company of precious few, apart from pregnant Russian stripper Daka (Naomi Watts) and a mysterious older woman named Sandy (Donna Mitchell) whom »
- Peter Debruge
2 items from 2014
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