Movie Reviews

Published on August 17th, 2017 | by Josh Aja

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Logan Lucky

Jimmy Logan (Channing Tatum) just got fired from his job and found out that his ex-wife is moving his daughter to another state. He lives for his daughter and needs to get money fast to pay for a lawyer to fight the move. He decides that the best way to get this fast cash is to rob his previous employer, the Charlotte Motor Speedway. He enlist the help of his brother Clyde Logan (Adam Driver), his fast driving sister Millie Logan (Riley Keough), and explosives expert Joe Bang (Daniel Craig). Together they hatch a plan to rob the cash vault under the NASCAR track during the biggest race of the year. It won’t be easy for the crew as they must overcome many obstacles along the way. For one they only one of them who can blow the massive safe, Bang, is currently in prison. Bang also insists that his two inept brothers be included in the heist. There is also the matter of a large private police force patrolling the track. But the biggest hurdle may be the Logan family curse. Something bad is seemingly always happening to the family. Jimmy was destine to go to the NFL before a freak accident ruined his knee and ended his football career. Clyde was on his way back home from deployment in the Army and was hit by a roadside bomb and lost his arm. If they can overcome all of this they can walk away with a fortune.

This Steven Soderbergh (Ocean’s 11, Ocean’s 12, Ocean’s 13) directed film is a fun and fast paced heist film. It definitely fits into the Ocean’s film model, with a large cast, twists that keep the audience guessing and well thought out ending. This films stands apart from those by being more hillbilly than the sleek well put together Ocean’s crew. The film dialog is well done and written expertly by Rebecca Blunt, this is the first screen writing credit for Rebecca. There are plenty of cameos by West Virginia Natives, NASCAR drivers and commentators, and others. I had heard beforehand that there were several cameos and made for a fun exercise in spotting the NASCAR drivers in various roles.  The ensemble cast is stellar led by Tatum, Driver and Craig. The cast includes fun performances by a barely recognizable Seth MacFarlane along with Dwight Yoakam, Katie Holmes, and Hilary Swank. There were times thought that the various accents that the cast were attempting to use felt forced and/or missing from particular scenes. The pace of the film is good but does get a little slow during the heist set up and the two hour run time was a tad too long for me.

Overall this is a fun film that fits the heist movie genre perfectly. One news report in the film characterized the robbery as Ocean’s 7/11 and that pretty well sums up the film. The characters are original and if you are a fan of these types of movies you will not be disappointed.

3.5 out of 5

 

Second Review by

Angele Colageo

Jimmy (Channing Tatum), the eldest of the Logan clan, loses his job in construction when his undeclared limp is deemed a pre-existing liability to the company. This is tacked on to the ever long list of how unlucky the Logan’s are historically. Per Clyde (Adam Driver) Jimmy’s brother and family historian( who can name all the unfortunate happenings to each member of the Logan family back to the confederacy). Clyde attributes this lack of luck as the reason why Jimmy (headed for a bright future in the NFL), ended up blowing out his knee senior year. Also being why Clyde lost his hand in Afghanistan to an IED. Their familial unlucky streak had previously curbed Jimmy and Clyde’s attempt at a life of crime in their younger days. Going straight hasn’t brought them financial gains either.

Not a lot brings happiness to Jimmy these days. The brightest point would be his little daughter Sadie (played charmingly by Farrah Mackenzie). His relationship with her is about to be jeopardized because Bobbie-Jo, his ex-wife (Katie Holmes) will be moving which will make it harder for Jimmy to spend time with Sadie. We get the impression that despite the divorce, their relationship is amicable focusing on their love for Sadie. We meet Mellie (Riley Keogh), the youngest Logan, who in addition to being a hairdresser, cares for and dotes on Sadie. The family aspect framing this heist provides the warmth to enhance the humor that cleverly weaves through entire the movie.

With these changes happening, Jimmy decides that he needs to change his life and his luck. His solution is to rob the Charlotte Motor Speedway and it happens to be the NASCAR Coca Cola 600. Clyde is initially reluctant, but willing to take a risk for family. Now Jimmy has a plan, but they need the help of an explosives expert. The only one they happen to know is  Joe Bang (Daniel Craig), who at the time is five months away from finishing his sentence. Now Joe, has a few demands. He wants his brothers in on the action. We meet the Bang brothers, Sam (Brian Gleeson) and Fish (Jack Quaid) the computer expert who knows all the twitters. We then are led through the heist, wondering when the Logan’s luck will run out.

Seth McFarlane, Hillary Swank, Dwight Yokam make appearances in supporting roles as well as some familiar faces from the NASCAR world. This is another fantastic production from Soderbergh and Tatum. Logan Lucky is a funny, charming and clever movie that I would recommend as a great way to spend a couple of hours of your time.

4.5/5 Stars

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