Live by Night

2016

Action / Crime / Drama / Thriller

141
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Rotten 35%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 45%
IMDb Rating 6.4 10 36869

Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Downloaded 724,574 times
March 10, 2017 at 07:53 PM

Director

Cast

Zoe Saldana as Graciela
Ben Affleck as Joe Coughlin
Sienna Miller as Emma Gould
Elle Fanning as Loretta Figgis
720p 1080p
957.79 MB
1280*720
English
R
23.976 fps
2hr 9 min
P/S 18 / 153
1.97 GB
1920*1080
English
R
23.976 fps
2hr 9 min
P/S 13 / 145

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by trublu215 6 / 10

The gangster conventions are there, just not the passion.

Live By Night tells the story of gangster Joe Coughlin (Ben Affleck) as he rises, falls then rises again through the criminal underworlds of Boston and Miami. Chronicling his life throughout the prohibition era in America, Joe becomes involved in the most nefarious of situations. He survives a bank heist gone wrong in which a police officers winds up dead, he survives a long stint in prison caused by the betrayal of his femme fatale Emma (Sienne Miller), he goes through so much in the film that you start to wonder less about what is going to happen than as to why it is happening. This is a film that feels incomplete, rushed and all together shallow. Ben Affleck, who has given us some pretty incredible films up until now, shows his weaknesses as a screenwriter but continues to give us more than enough to chew when it comes to his direction.

While I did want more out of this film, there is no denying that Affleck can most certainly stage some breathtaking action sequences. He knows when to get close, he knows what to show and when to show it. Live By Night is no exception to that standard in regards to how everything is shown. Some major highlights of the film include a vicious car chase through a country back road, copious amounts of bloody shootouts and brutal fights throughout yet we feel disengaged by what is going on. We don't know enough about anyone in the film outside of Joe to be connected to them, let alone feel bad when someone dies. To be quite honest, the film is 128 minutes and has about 100 characters in it...none of which you end up caring about. This comes down on the shoulders of Affleck as a screenwriter. In many ways, the film plays out like a highlight reel to a HBO mini-series such as Boardwalk Empire. It never really lets us simmer in slow burn human drama and instead gives us an action packed gangster film that is more on the level of Gangster Squad than White Heat.

If there is one thing that I've grown to expect going into a Ben Affleck film, it is that I'm bound to be blown away by the cast if all else fails. While the performances in this film are good, some of them even excellent, it really doesn't translate well when you just don't care about them. Ironically, in a film that is geared towards male characters and dominated by such, the women in this film give tremendous performances. Sienna Miller and Zoe Saldana stand out as two performances that were truly powerhouse even if their screen time collectively added up to maybe twenty minutes all together.

Then there is Chris Messina, who was a bit hard to judge here, considering he is playing a character from the 1930s underworld, but it was extremely hard to take him seriously during times when you wanted nothing more than to be able to take him seriously. At first, I figured he was the comic relief but then I was left waiting for him to drop the act and be serious for a moment. While I know Messina is a phenomenal actor, I just could not take him seriously in this role. Unfortunately, I thought he was too over the top. No matter what my thoughts on Messina were, he still did not compare to how I felt about Ben Affleck's performance as Joe.

While I am a big fan of Ben Affleck, I was severely let down by his performance in this film. I've read about the differences between the film and the novel regarding the age and honestly, I don't really care about that. The film is the film and the book is the book. That isn't my issue here. My issue is how wooden Affleck went to portray Joe. There was nothing new, nothing deep about this character which is pretty disappointing considering both The Town and Gone Baby Gone had tremendous lead characters that made us care about what happens to them. Unfortunately, this isn't the case here. This film does very little to make us care about any character, let alone our lead. Many will argue that watching a criminal empire get built is fascinating no matter how many times we see it, and I agree with that. But when you have someone as uninteresting as Joe Coughlin, something that is supposed to be fun to watch turns into a chore. That is probably the most frustrating thing about this film.

Overall, Live by Night is a throwback to classical gangster films that serves as Ben Affleck's worst directorial effort. With that being said, the film still features some truly thrilling action sequences that are bound to satisfy many even if the film is a bloated mess that should have been larger than what is or nothing at all.

Reviewed by trublu215 6 / 10

A frustrating film that is well intended and, at times, thrilling but never reaches what it aspires to be.

Live By Night tells the story of gangster Joe Coughlin (Ben Affleck) as he rises, falls then rises again through the criminal underworlds of Boston and Miami. Chronicling his life throughout the prohibition era in America, Joe becomes involved in the most nefarious of situations. He survives a bank heist gone wrong in which a police officers winds up dead, he survives a long stint in prison caused by the betrayal of his femme fatale Emma (Sienne Miller), he goes through so much in the film that you start to wonder less about what is going to happen than as to why it is happening. This is a film that feels incomplete, rushed and all together shallow. Ben Affleck, who has given us some pretty incredible films up until now, shows his weaknesses as a screenwriter but continues to give us more than enough to chew when it comes to his direction.

While I did want more out of this film, there is no denying that Affleck can most certainly stage some breathtaking action sequences. He knows when to get close, he knows what to show and when to show it. Live By Night is no exception to that standard in regards to how everything is shown. Some major highlights of the film include a vicious car chase through a country back road, copious amounts of bloody shootouts and brutal fights throughout yet we feel disengaged by what is going on. We don't know enough about anyone in the film outside of Joe to be connected to them, let alone feel bad when someone dies. To be quite honest, the film is 128 minutes and has about 100 characters in it...none of which you end up caring about. This comes down on the shoulders of Affleck as a screenwriter. In many ways, the film plays out like a highlight reel to a HBO mini-series such as Boardwalk Empire. It never really lets us simmer in slow burn human drama and instead gives us an action packed gangster film that is more on the level of Gangster Squad than White Heat.

If there is one thing that I've grown to expect going into a Ben Affleck film, it is that I'm bound to be blown away by the cast if all else fails. While the performances in this film are good, some of them even excellent, it really doesn't translate well when you just don't care about them. Ironically, in a film that is geared towards male characters and dominated by such, the women in this film give tremendous performances. Sienna Miller and Zoe Saldana stand out as two performances that were truly powerhouse even if their screen time collectively added up to maybe twenty minutes all together.

Then there is Chris Messina, who was a bit hard to judge here, considering he is playing a character from the 1930s underworld, but it was extremely hard to take him seriously during times when you wanted nothing more than to be able to take him seriously. At first, I figured he was the comic relief but then I was left waiting for him to drop the act and be serious for a moment. While I know Messina is a phenomenal actor, I just could not take him seriously in this role. Unfortunately, I thought he was too over the top. No matter what my thoughts on Messina were, he still did not compare to how I felt about Ben Affleck's performance as Joe.

While I am a big fan of Ben Affleck, I was severely let down by his performance in this film. I've read about the differences between the film and the novel regarding the age and honestly, I don't really care about that. The film is the film and the book is the book. That isn't my issue here. My issue is how wooden Affleck went to portray Joe. There was nothing new, nothing deep about this character which is pretty disappointing considering both The Town and Gone Baby Gone had tremendous lead characters that made us care about what happens to them. Unfortunately, this isn't the case here. This film does very little to make us care about any character, let alone our lead. Many will argue that watching a criminal empire get built is fascinating no matter how many times we see it, and I agree with that. But when you have someone as uninteresting as Joe Coughlin, something that is supposed to be fun to watch turns into a chore. That is probably the most frustrating thing about this film.

Overall, Live by Night is a throwback to classical gangster films that serves as Ben Affleck's worst directorial effort. With that being said, the film still features some truly thrilling action sequences that are bound to satisfy many even if the film is a bloated mess that should have been larger than what is or nothing at all.

Reviewed by bob-the-movie-man 6 / 10

"Sleep By Day...."

Ben Affleck's new movie could best be described as "sprawling". In both directing and writing the screenplay (based on a novel by Dennis Lehane), Affleck has aimed for a "Godfather" style gangster epic and missed: not missed by a country mile, but missed nonetheless.

Morally bankrupted by his experiences in the trenches, Joe Coughlin (Affleck) returns to Boston to pick and choose which social rules he wants to follow. Not sociopathic per se, as he has a strong personal code of conduct, but Coughlin turns to robbery walking a delicate path between the warring mob factions of the Irish community, led by Albert White (the excellent Robert Glenister from TV's "Hustle"), and the Italian community, led by Maso Pescatore (Remo Girone). Trying to keep him out of jail is his father ("Harry Potter"'s Brendan Gleeson) who – usefully – is the Deputy Police Chief. Life gets complicated when he falls in love with White's moll, Emma Gould (Sienna Miller). The scene is set for a drama stretching from Boston to the hot and steamy Everglades over a period of the next twenty years.

Although a watchable popcorn film, the choppy episodic nature of the movie is hugely frustrating, with no compelling story arc to glue all of the disparate parts together. The (often very violent) action scenes are very well done and exciting but as a viewer you don't feel invested in a 'journey' from the beginning of the film to the (unsatisfactory) ending. In my experience it's never a good sign when the writer considers it necessary to add a voice-over to the soundtrack, and here Affleck mutters truisms about his thoughts and motives that irritate more than illuminate.

The sheer volume of players in the piece (there are about three film's worth in here) and the resulting minimal screen time given to each allows no time for character development. Unfortunately the result is that you really care very little about whether people live or die and big plot developments land as rather an "oh" than an "OH!".

Affleck puts in a great turn as the autistic central character whose condition results in a cold, calculating demeanor and a complete lack of emotion reflecting on his face. Oh, hang on… no, wait a minute… sorry… I've got the wrong film…. I'm thinking about "The Accountant". I don't know whether he filmed these films in parallel. I generally enjoy Ben Affleck's work (he was excellent in "The Town") but for 95% of this film his part could have been completed by a burly extra with an Affleck mask on. In terms of acting range, his facial muscles barely get to a "2" on the scale. Given the double problem that he is barely credible as the "young man" returning mentally wounded from the trenches, then in my opinion he would have been better to have focused on the writing and directing and found a lead of the likes of an Andrew Garfield to fill Coughlin's shoes.

That's not to say there is not some good acting present in their all but brief supporting roles. Elle Fanning ("Trumbo", "Maleficent") in particular shines as the Southern belle Loretta Figgis: a religious zealot driving her police chief father (Chris Cooper, "The Bourne Identity") to distraction. Cooper also delivers a star turn as the moral but pragmatic law-man.

Sienna Miller ("Foxcatcher") delivers a passable Cork accent and does her best to develop some believable chemistry with the rock-like Affleck. Zoe Saldana ("Star Trek") is equally effective as a Cuban humanitarian.

In summary, it's sprawlingly watchable… but overall a disappointment, with Affleck over-reaching. One day we surely will get a gangster film the likes of another "Godfather", "Goodfellas" or "Untouchables". Although this has its moments, unfortunately it's more towards the "Public Enemies" end of the genre spectrum.

(For the graphical version of this review please visit bob-the-movie-man.com. Thanks.)

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