A Most Violent Year

A Most Violent Year ★★★½

Saw A Most Violent Year and was impressed. It was much more serene than I expected as Chandor chooses to play within the world of the done to death crime drama instead of reinventing the genre or duplicating the countless films we've seen before it. There's no time wasted with detailed intricacies of the family life or their happenings, and it has a very assertive coldness that is meant to drive home the fact that the life of a gangster isn't spectacular. Violence is a rarity, and the beautiful things these people have are never showcased or glorified as a benefit of the business. A Most Violent Year stays STRICTLY about the characters more than the crimes they commit, and the dialogue heavy scenes that fill the run-time are only meant to move the Morale's towards a preconceived end point instead of individual dramatic peaks and climaxes. This comes at the cost of viewer satisfaction, and it constantly walks the line of becoming too mundane, but Isaac's Corleone esque presence controlled every scene he was in and always kept me engaged. Other great performances from Chastain, David Oyelowo, and Christopher Abbott (of Girls fame!) round out the cast and always keep the character work at an extremely high level.

8/10