When two brothers organize the robbery of their parent's jewelry store the job goes horribly wrong, triggering a series of events that sends them, their father and one brother's wife hurtling towards a shattering climax.
Needing extra cash, two brothers conspire to pull off the perfect, victimless crime. No guns, no violence, no problem. But when an accomplice ignores the rules and crosses the line, his actions trigger a series of events in which no one is left unscathed.Written by
Sidney Lumet said that the scene between Philip Seymour Hoffman and Marissa Tomei in the car when Philip Seymour Hoffman has his breakdown was one of the most extraordinary scenes of acting that he had ever been involved with. See more »
When Charles is following Andy, the same woman can be seen walking down the street, in opposite directions before and after. See more »
Says Andy: "Nobody gets hurt, everybody wins." Before he says it, we know the opposite is true: Everybody gets hurt, nobody wins. This is a new strand in American movies, or perhaps an old strand brought back at long last. Think "Eastern Promises", "There Will Be Blood", "No Country for Old Men". These movies are dark, serious, extremely well made, and don't care about happy endings. I love them. "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead" fits the general description, but creates an atmosphere all its own. Kelly Masterson's debut script is as close as a Hollywood movie will ever get to a Greek tragedy. Paying tribute to fellow veteran director Stanley Donen, Sidney Lumet expertly and soberly turns the sombre story into an outstanding, old school character drama. The opening shots, although of an obese accountant doggy-styling his trophy wife, have the look and feel of a Dutch master's painting. By contrast, the drug dealer's condo looks more like a string of Mondrians. Great performances all around. Only Albert Finney's character Charles feels a little over-acted, eyes wide and mouth agape almost all the time. But then he is in trouble deep, deeper than any of the troubles most of us will ever know. For compensation, Marisa Tomei is super hot. But of course you don't need me to tell you that. Why her character Gina would want to be with a guy like Andy, we're never told, but that's okay. Action is character, after all. The unique and magic touch of Carter Burwell's music makes this fine movie a masterpiece. Don't miss it.
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