A blend of personal favorites and films that I consider to be the "greatest." Top two-hundred is definitive. Only 1940-2015.
Before the Devil Knows You're Dead
No one was supposed to get hurt.
When two brothers organize the robbery of their parents' jewelry store, the job goes horribly wrong, triggering a series of events that send them and their family hurtling towards a shattering climax.
Whenever people make lists with favourite or best directors, Sidney Lumet hardly ever pops up. That should change. Look at his filmography. He is one of the best directors that ever worked in the industry.
This film is modern noir at its finest. It is bleak, rather disturbing and dark as hell. The story, which unravels in an asynchronous chronology, is multilayered and keeps you guessing due to its fragmented narrative. Only a very talented director can add the much needed coherence a story like this needs.
What Lumet understands very well is to give his actors the right amount of space to inhabit their characters. There is not one weak performance here. The main cast is superb, moved along…
Dear god, what a dismal tale. Before the Devil Knows You're Dead is an exercise in taking an instance of 'it can't get any worse, can it?' and making it much, much worse in the very next scene. I certainly don't mean in the quality of the film, which is superb, but in the depths of misfortune one family can sink to. This is tragedy of such magnitude that The Bard himself would be proud, compounded by the fact that all the misfortune is due to greed and ineptitude. Sidney Lumet's swan song deserves a place in the pantheon of 'bleakest films ever,' which makes this familial train wreck all the more morbidly fascinating.
Not a single role here is…
After losing one of the best actors of our generation today, Philip Seymour Hoffman, I wanted to check more of his films. He left behind an amazing body of work and I've only seen maybe half of it. I started with Sidney Lumet's dark and brilliant noir Before the Devil Knows You're Dead.
The script here is so damn good. Keeping you invested in characters that are very unlikable. The cast is terrific, with Hoffman and Ethan Hawke both giving great performances. Albert Finney was probably the standout to me however. Not only is this yet another great performance from Hoffman, but it's one of 2007's most underrated films and a great film for Lumet to have ended his career with.
Sidney Lumet's Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead tells the story of three people from the same family, but on a Saturday morning on the outskirts of New York, everything seems normal in the life of the Hanson family. The father, Charles passed the driving test and his wife Nanette is going to the a family jewelery. As the eldest son, Andy is worried about a scheduled inspection of the finances for the following Monday and the younger brother, Hank, as usual, is worried about his money problems. However, at 7:58 a.m. Saturday morning, the lives of the members of this family will change because both Andy and Hank decide to rob their family's business.
If we look closely, Before…
Even though I saw this years ago, I was still completely surprised by everything that happened during this recent re-watch. All I remember from the last time I saw it was that I liked it. This time, I fell head over heels in love. Before the Devil Knows You're Dead is essentially a family drama masquerading as a crime drama. Andy and Hank are brothers in very different stages in their lives. When Andy asks Hank to rob a jewelry store, everything goes wrong and the rest of the film is concerned with how their lives fall apart and how fucked up their family is.
This is definitely Phillip Seymour Hoffman's best performance, and that's a big deal. He always…
It's quite astounding to realise Sidney Lumet filmed Before the Devil Knows Your Dead when he was over eighty years old, after five decades as a critically acclaimed director responsible for many genuine Hollywood classics, because though it's often quite masterfully put together it's also filled with the energy & skill of a man five decades his junior - and frankly many directors in their thirties don't make films this good. Sadly it was also Lumet's last film before his death a few years later, but what an epilogue to a triumphant career; this is by turns a carefully lensed, cleverly written, well edited and superbly acted drama ostensibly about a heist gone wrong but primarily about a deeply dysfunctional American…
It's shot like a classic, but it certainly gets away with more than they could back then. Philip gives an outstanding performance, one of his best. Non-linear story telling is used perfectly here. Great crime film, but also a great family drama. Focuses more on the clean up than the preparation, which is a fresh spin for a heist film.
Film 17/30 of the "Scavenger Hunt #8" Challenge!
My Scavenger Hunt #8 List.
12. A film starring Philip Seymour Hoffman!
with or without the use of non-linear editing, this film still packs a wallop in expressing a highly laudable story. the proverbial black sheep's tumultuous actions that turns into a marquee of bad decisions and actions is the main draw and soul of this gripping drama. while the supporting actors are drawn softly, the main stars have their highest form to portray an unforgivable duo, especially to hoffman, who dared not to be conspicuous and yet, the recognizable and gorgeous bump in the cast. Lumet manages to pull in tricks taken from his earlier works and embodied it…
One of those films that, albeit of all its shortcomings, I couldn't help but enjoy. Yes, some of the supporting actors were mediocre at best (*couch* Marisa Tomei*cough), the visual style wasn't very special, and the non-linear narrative is quite overused. Still, Lumet's last film shows the touch of a masterful director, which in combination with Hawke/Hoffman is the reason I enjoyed it so much. The soundtrack is spectacular.
(Original review outdated, re-evaluation required at later date)
"What better place to explore gay subtext than an all-male prison?"
Um ótimo roteiro do (estreante) Kelly Masterson e na mão do genial cineasta Sidnei Lumet. Ainda com um belo trabalho de edição e um elenco afiado, o filme facilmente te ganha logo nos momentos iniciais. O desenrolar da trama vai sendo ainda mais interessante com as grandes atuações dos atores (principalmente Finney e Hoffman pra "variar") e lindos enquadramentos das cenas. Em seu último projeto, Lumet mostra o tamanho do seu talento e a capacidade de fazer um excelente filme mesmo após os 80 anos.
I have seen 2 Lumet films, this and 12 Angry Men. I get the feeling he kinda "had it" all along. I wasn't constantly blown away by this movie, but the editing and time jumps were really interesting, and there are some scenes (particularly the first in the drug dealer's apartment) that are simply masterful. And obviously the performances are all fantastic.
I was always turned off by the trailer and the poster of this movie.
I kept delaying to watch this movie for YEARS.
Then i decided to man up and watch it.
Surprised. Totally surprised. Actually, i am GLAD i watched it. The entire movie was well acted, crafted and edited.
The entire movie is about characters and how they deal with their own problems, issues, happiness, sorrow, etc.
The first time each character appears is different from the second time, then different in the third time, then different in the fourth, etc.
And by the end of the movie, you will NOT recognise the characters you met at the beginning of the movie.
Totally recommended. Totally worth it.
Every film Roger Ebert has given a four-star rating. This is an ongoing project.
The 2015 edition of the They Shoot Pictures, Don't They? 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films list.
Incomplete data forced the…