HELL OR HIGH WATER, the marvelous new film from David Mackenzie, is its somewhat tired and certainly overused title. Otherwise, this compact, subtle, surprising little marvel of a movie gets under your skin and has you thinking about, understanding, and feeling for our fractured country and its poor (and not only financially) populace in ways that very few films have managed -- including even last year's terrific-and-should-have-won-the-Oscar movie, The Big Short.
Young Adam through the under-seen/under-rated Hallam Foe to one of the most profound and moving sci-fi dramas ever, Perfect Sense. This new one hits his high mark so far: a tale of bank robberies (that work both ways: Banks continue to rob us, so we them), brotherhood that is shown us in bonds of both family and friendship, and a search for justice that proves as difficult, sad and quietly unsettling as any you'll have so far witnessed, movie-wise.
Tyler Sheridan (this one is much better than his earlier, more overwrought but less believable screenplay for Sicario), Mr. Mackenzie keeps everything on a low simmer throughout. Even when he gets to what would be, for lesser filmmakers, the chance to pull out the stops, he holds back -- which makes his audience appreciate all the more the opportunity to think about the consequences -- intended and not -- that one's actions incur.
Nick Cave and Warren Ellis, is appropriate -- and then some.)
CBS Films and running a just-about perfectly-timed 102 minutes, the movie, I hope, will be one of those up for multiple awards come Oscar time (unless it is just too subtle for Academy members to appreciate). A better film in every way than the over-the-top and crammed-with-violence No Country for Old Men, after opening in New York and Los Angeles this past week, it hits cities nationwide this Friday, August 19. Here in South Florida it will Click here to find the theater(s) nearest you.