With big brother Ben dawning the mask of one of the most loved superheroes of all time this year I think it would be fair to say Casey Affleck is living a little in his brother’s shadow. However, just when I’d kind of forgotten that he existed up pops ‘Triple 9’, a film with a nice bit of buzz surrounding it. With an ensemble cast and a seemingly exciting plot featuring heists, robberies and dirty cops maybe this would be the film to bring Affleck more into the spotlight!
The film starts well with an exciting and well executed bank robbery. This set the pace of the film at quite a good level and I was excited to see what the rest of the narrative had in store after this strong opening. The answer unfortunately was not a lot. What follows this strong opening is in all honesty a pretty dull film. Though there was so much potential here which only added to the frustration of the average result. On several occasions there were scenes really well set up, seeming to promise moments of tension and suspense but they always ended way too soon. Just as I thought things were going to get back to the quality of the opening they were immediately halted in favour of a less interesting alternative. Don’t get me wrong though this isn’t a terrible film, it’s quite watchable but apart from the opening there is this lingering sense of boredom constantly creeping alongside the narrative.
The ensemble cast was certainly one of the most intriguing aspects to the film before watching, the stars I was most excited to see in action were Woody Harrelson, Kate Winslet and Chiwetel Ejiofor. All the actors and actresses perform well and fulfill their roles adequately but none of them really impressed me. However, apart from Falcon in the Marvel movies, this has been the role that has convinced me most of Anthony Mackie’s talent as a performer. I was mostly looking forward to seeing Winslet excel as the head of the Russian mafia and in doing so be the fantastic villain that I know she could be, something she never quite managed in the ‘Divergent’ and ‘Insurgent’ films. She certainly looks the part here and like many of the scenes in the film, she’s set up well but never gets to reach her full potential. This was the biggest disappointment for me personally, it’s squandered talent and the film really suffers as a result. The issues with the characters don’t stop there though. Basically all the characters we’re meant to be routing for aren’t likeable enough and the crooks never become detestable enough to provoke any involvement from the audience.
So whilst the opening to the film is good and there is potential around ever corner the way in which the story is told here wastes all of these strong foundations. Built on top of them are poor characters, under-developed scenes and and over whelming sense of dullness that just shouldn’t be present in a film like this. I’m not quite sure how this is possible with a run time just short of two hours but they manage to fill this time with mediocre materiel rather than anything more impressive. ‘Triple 9’ certainly disappointed and won’t be memorable past next month, it is a watchable disappointment though.
Rating – 6/10
Question: What is your favourite bank robbery scene from a film?
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