Words by Naomi Jeffreys
Tom Hardy and Shia Lebeouf lead an all star cast in John Hillcoat’s Lawless. With a slow pace and regional suburban American accents which make the actors hard to understand, and quite often the emotional impact is lost on the viewer. And the female leads, Mia Wasichowska and Jessics Chastain’s character arcs are never fully developed and feel underused.
The film follows the true story of brothers running a liquor business during the Prohibition era.
Rated 18, there are many gruesome scenes in the film, a particularly gruesome incident involves Tom Hardy’s Forrest being victim of being severely beaten up and his throat cut. Audiences gasped at the realness of the scene, but, little did we know there was more blood and gore to come.
For all you movie lovers out there who love a Western, blood and a real Wild West of an adventure, then this is the film for you. But for me, the standout performances go to Mia Wasichowska (Alice in Wonderland) and Jessica Chastain (The Tree of Life), they play the roles of the ‘femme fatale’, each with a quiet longing for the bad boy. Their quiet performances lend themselves to the gutsy, manly performances of Shia Lebeouf and Tom Hardy.
Overall, this film is a traditional Western, following the bad boys of the Suburbs fighting against the evil forces for their femme fatale lovers.
Lawless is out in UK cinemas from today.