Lawless Movie Review


Dalton Valette, Staff Reporter

Lawless: R, 115 minutes

Starring- Shia LaBeouf, Tom Hardy, Guy Pearce

3 /5 stars

The 1920’s is a rough time for those in Franklin County, Virginia, but not for three brothers (LaBeouf, Hardy, and Jason Clarke) who are in the bootlegging business. Things seem to be running smoothly for the brothers who try to run a noble business, but when a new deputy from Chicago (Pearce) bent on riding all of Franklin County of bootlegger’s steps into the picture, the brothers all have to become lawless.

This is a violent, bloody, and occasionally comically gross film. Blood is almost as abundant as trees in this movie. Shootouts are common throughout the film but there are long stretches that are rather dull and drag on, leaving one to almost zone out until the next shootout occurs. Though all the actors give great performances that are real and believable, Pearce steals the show, giving a beautifully creepy portrait of a somewhat modern Ahab and his white whale, as Pearce’s character will stop at nothing (and I mean nothing) to shut down all the moonshine brewing in the area. His performance reminds me of Stanley Tucci’s portrayal as George Harvey in The Lovely Bones.

                    Unfortunately, the good action scenes and the superb acting by the cast can’t save this film from being just mediocre. The characters are overall one dimensional and the ending is a given from the moment the opening credits start. There are no big twists or surprises in the film and you don’t particularly feel for t the characters. Plus, probably a good half hour could have been edited out just to keep a steadier pace of the film. And marketing Gary Oldman as the third main character on all the posters and trailer for this film when in reality his character is only in two short scenes is just a dirty marketing tactic to draw in a wider audience. Lawless is largely listless.