Take a Drink: every time you see something that shows how rich Rick Carver is.
Take a Drink: for every eviction
Do a Shot: for the poor old man.
Finish your Drink: for the Balls that Dennis Nash has.
By: Movie Snurb (Two Beers) –
Andrew Garfield plays Dennis Nash, a man who is a single father living with his mother (played by Laura Dern) in the house that he grew up in. He’s a hard-working blue collar American construction worker. They find themselves being evicted by the bank and by Rick Carver (Michael Shannon in possibly his best performance). After Dennis and his family are forced to live in a motel he pounds the pavement looking for work. Dennis finds himself working for Rick. The deeper Dennis goes with Rick the more Dennis hates what he becomes. He learns things become very gray in the real estate world. Then Dennis begins to do just what was done to him and his family, he begins evicting people for Rick.
The whole cast is brilliant in this film. Laura Dern isn’t in the film much but when she is she makes herself noticed. Andrew Garfield also deserves a lot of praise. He shows such a range of emotion that feels more real than any other performance I’ve seen from him. You can feel his regret the first time he evicts a family. But who really stands out in this film is Michael Shannon. It’s unfortunate that he likely won’t be put up for the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. Even if they campaigned for him he’d get lost with all of the other amazing supporting actor performances this year is shaping up to offer. We all know that Shannon can play a good villain, but this performance is elevated because you know there are people in this world just like him. Willing to do whatever it takes to make a dollar, people aren’t real to him and only their houses matter.
This film feels so real. Even the minor characters feel so real. Every family or person you see get evicted feels like someone you could know, whether it be a neighbor, acquaintance, or friend, which makes this film all the more heartbreaking. The climax of this film, which I won’t mention, is so intense. You’re not sure what is going to happen and you see a few ending possibilities, none of which are good. Let’s just say it’s not a happy ending, but you’ll be on the edge of your seat until the credits roll.
The only real issue I had with this film is how exaggerated Rick Carver’s wealth was. They have a party after they believe they struck a huge real estate deal that’ll make both he and Dennis Nash very rich, and the party looked like it was straight out of Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. It’s like, we get it. Carver is super rich; we don’t need this hoopla to make us realize it.
As intense as it is heartbreaking, this film is an unflinching look at a real problem in America. It may not be a contender during awards season, but everyone should still go and see this film.