27 January 2014 2:30 AM, PST | HeyUGuys.co.uk | See recent HeyUGuys news »

Though the premise to Scott Cooper’s Out of the Furnace is somewhat unoriginal, with a conventional revenge plot that’s grown tired in contemporary cinema, the filmmaker’s sophomore feature – after the double Academy Award winning Crazy Heart – manages to illuminate this concept, as the themes presented are done so with such ingenuity and allure. Cooper surprises you, and takes you places you aren’t expecting to go – and when you throw in an array of spellbindingly impressive performances, you’re onto a winner.

Before our protagonists enter the fray, we are introduced to the violently unpredictable and deranged Harlan DeGroat (Woody Harrelson), who causes something of a stir at a drive-in cinema. Moments later we meet Russell Baze (Christian Bale) – a hardworking, diligent man who strives for a better life alongside his partner, Lena (Zoe Saldana). However a cruel twist of fate lands Russell in jail on drink driving charges, »

- Stefan Pape

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