Cut Bank

Screen Shot 2015-07-15 at 10.38.37 PMA24 is off to a rough start this year. They started off the year with Son of a Gun, which was very forgettable. Now they have Cut Bank. I thought that Matt Shakman’s directorial debut looked promising. It had the best film distribution company distributing it, it had a killer cast, the screenplay made The Black List in 2009, and the director has directed some of the best episodes of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Sadly, this film was a huge disappointment for me. Liam Hemsworth and his ditzy girlfriend played by Teresa Palmer are out in a field recording a video. Hemsworth captures the murder on camera. The police get involved and the leading officer on the case is the one and only John Malkovich. Malkovich is the best part of the film. He is the main source of comedic relief. Cut Bank so desperately wants to be No Country for Old Men with a comedic twist. The villain in this film, played by Michael Stuhlbarg, is a clear ripoff of Javier Bardem’s character in No Country for Old Men. As much as I like Stuhlbarg as an actor, he was not the right choice for the villain. He does not pull of the creepy character he is built up to be. Shakman is more focused on the story than the characters. You never find out much about the characters. The comedy was the best part of the film. Malkovich is given a bit to work with and he provides quite a few laughs. Bruce Dern is pretty good for what he is in. He is always fun to watch onscreen. Liam Hemsworth is completely pushed back into the film while Malkovich and Dern steal all of the scenes. Hemsworth’s character is pretty very one-dimensional. He just plays a mopey character who want to get out of the small town and move to Los Angeles. Unless you are an A24 completist, Malkovich and Dern are really the only reason to check this on out.

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