When did car chases become such fun? One should always be somewhat sceptical when entering a cinema where a Ben Affleck production is being shown. You never quite know what you are getting yourself into. (Remember Gigli? No? Well, you're lucky). With The Town being directed by and starring the man himself, it is double the pressure for Affleck. Luckily, this fast paced thriller offers even more of the Gone Baby Gone-type redemption from the Pearl Harbours and Paychecks of his career.
So what makes this heist-flick a pleasant experience for the cinema-goer, rather than giving us the 'I want to tear my eyes out with a corkscrew' sensation we experienced during Surviving Christmas?
Firstly we have a lucid and engaging story which is not 100% original, but does more than the job.
Secondly, casting is key. Though we have no academy -worthy performances here, each actor holds their own: Rebbecca Hall does her signature straight laced, girl next door thing while Blake Lively climbs down the social ladder from being a Manhattan socialite (Gossip Girl), and becomes America's finest example of trailer trash. And though Affleck never has quite had the cinematic presence in the action-drama role as, Leonardo Dicaprio, for example, he still packs enough spunk to keep us genuinely interested in the, 'redeem me' villain that he plays.
The most surprising part of the film for me however, was the fact that I wasn't thinking of what to have for dinner during the inevitable car-chase scenes. I was instead hanging on at every wheel-screech and police siren and waiting for the next explosion.
So for finally I agree with Empire's 4 stars on this one.