Triple Frontier, The Dirt and The Highwaymen – Triple-Header Review

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Triple Frontier

Triple Frontier Poster

Runtime – 2h 5m
Genre – Action/Thriller

Been in development hell since 2010, Triple Frontier, the new Netflix Original movie stars a mighty ensemble of A-list stars including Ben Affleck and Oscar Issac in the lead roles. J. C. Chandor, well known for his 2014 critically acclaimed crime-drama, A Most Violent Year, fills in the director’s role for Kathryn Bigelow who was initially discussed to take over the project.

Adjacent to several other heist films in the past, Triple Frontier takes off on a comparable medium, a group of proficient friends orchestrating to loot a boatload of money and the entire plan goes from bad to worse as a result of a terrible mishap. The dire majestic terrain setting akin to the 2017 Netflix Original film The Ritual sets the mood for a possible entertaining thriller.

But, things go south throughout the narrative primarily because of the lack of coherence and the inconsistency, tone-wise. The film had two options to kick around, either be a ridiculously entertaining heist film like the Fast and the Furious franchise or duplicate what Lone Survivor did and be a serious film. Sadly, Triple Frontier is somewhere in-between.

Overall, with decent performances and a premise which keeps moving despite several hiccups, Triple Frontier is enjoyable for it is, and is perfectly appropriate for a Netflix viewing experience.

Rating – 3/5 | Grade – B

The Dirt

The Dirt Poster Netflix

Runtime – 1h 48m
Genre – Biographical Drama

The Dirt is a biographical-drama directed by Jeff Tremaine and recounts the insane stories and crackpot adventures of the world’s most notorious rock band, Mötley Crüe.

Getting off the ground with the positives, the production design of this film was astounding. The interiors, exteriors, makeup and costume design felt very authentic and provided that refreshing 80s feel to the film. The chic narrative style maintained throughout the entire film prompted a few Wolf of Wall Street vibes for me. Especially, while breaking the fourth wall and the way the entire party scenes were shot. But, the indefinite narrative and the patchy screenplay work spoiled the movie for me.

I felt like I was only watching the greatest trainwrecks of the band as it kept moving from one debacle to another without an appealing flow following behind it. Although its the same old story of how the band began their journey, celebrated their success and ruined their lives, there was never a point in the movie where I was emotionally invested in any of these characters. The performances were surprisingly decent at best, as everyone involved did the best they could with these half-baked characters.

Overall, The Dirt had moments which will startle you to the core and I appreciate the filmmaker for keeping it real. But, narratively the movie was a huge disappointment as I’m never really invested throughout the runtime.

Rating – 2.5/5 | Grade – C+

The Highwaymen

The Highwaymen Poster Netflix

Runtime – 2h 12m
Genre – Crime

Starring Kevin Costner and Woody Harrelson, The Highwaymen takes place in the depression era, where two Texas Rangers, Hamer and Gault, try their best to track down and apprehend the notorious and popular teenage serial killer couple Bonnie and Clyde. Directed by John Lee Hancock, this movie is in development since 2005 with different iterations being pitched and getting declined. Netflix eventually acquired the rights of the project in 2018 and proceeded with principal photography.

At an upsetting two-hour-twelve-minute runtime, this film is way too long for a crime film. It’s basically a cat and mouse chase set in the 1930s, the storyline wasn’t enticing and the pace of the film was terribly inconsistent where few scenes tend to drag for way longer than expected.

But, the main focus or the highlight of the narrative is the character development and the interaction between Costner and Harrelson. Both their characters are given ample amount of screentime with hard-hitting dialogue, emotion and true grit. Their performances also complement their characters flawlessly as it feels like they’re the perfect fit for these unique roles which are almost 100 years old.

Overall, The Highwaymen is a much well-layered with the maximum amount of screentime being spent to the lead characters. However, the dreary plot and pace of the film will test your patience for the most part.

Rating – 2.75/5 | Grade – C+

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Surya Komal


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