Good Time ★★★★½

I had very little idea of what I was getting myself into when I began watching Good Time. It was recommended as an under-appreciated film of 2017, and considering that it got 0 Oscar nominations, I would agree with that assessment. Good Time doesn’t follow traditional structure and production design. It is a loud, confusing mess that kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the running time. The plot is simple on paper, a man tries to save his mentally disabled brother from prison after they rob a bank. But in execution, the film relies on this simple motivation for the whole running time. We never leave Connie’s side after the opening credits until the end of the movie. We see his struggle as he lies his way around Queens motivated by his love for his brother. He is a bad guy, but you want to see him succeed, because his love is so apparent.
The film also succeeds at maintaining realism. I don’t really know much about the New York crime world, but I do know what realistic dialogue sounds like, and these characters feel real. They don’t rely on flashy visuals, but rather the complicated connections between characters who barely know each other and are all confused or angry. Finally, this film’s cinematography and sound immediately stood out. The sound is blaring and intense, putting me on edge for the entirety of the air time. It isn’t just some boring filler music like in so many action films, it really drew me into the picture and made me feel the same emotions as Connie.

This is an intense, insane movie without a real story or structure. But I couldn’t look away because I needed to see what would happen next, and I enjoyed myself the whole time.