20 September, 2010

The Duchess Recommends . . .

"The Town"

After at least several torturous days of anticipation, the Duchess and Senator at last made it out of the house and into the movie theater to see "The Town", Ben Affleck's new star/directorial vehicle and a pretty enjoyable flick besides.  "The Town" entertained the Duchess to such an extent that she was able to overlook -- almost -- its less-than-stellar bits (of which there were a handful but none so glaring as to ruin the picture).   

Anyone who's seen the trailer knows the premise of "The Town" -- Ben Affleck and company are bad boy Boston townies well-skilled in the art of the bank heist.  Pressured varyingly by community, family, and economics, the Gang of Four robbers who pull off the key thievery do so with aplomb, and no remorse.  Except of course for Affleck, whose dissatisfaction with the life of crime comes to the fore aided by the sensitive and unfailingly forgiving character played by British actress Rebecca Hall, Claire Keesey.  Claire, an unwilling participant in the film's first robbery as an assistant manager of a Boston bank, becomes the object of Affleck's Doug MacRay's affection after he assumes responsibility for tracking her post-crime and ensuring that she doesn't remember anything about the masked robbers, and doesn't go to the Feds (reduced to lone soldier Don Draper (aka Jon Hamm)).  

Crime being what it is, violent and debilitating repercussions abound for Affleck, Hall and the entire cast of characters, rounded out by luscious Blake Lively, steely Chris Cooper (in the role of MacRay pere), and the craggy but exciting Pete Postlethwaite.  Perhaps predictably the best performance in the film is given by the brilliant Jeremy Renner (of "The Hurt Locker" fame).  He's spectacular.

"The Town" was well-reviewed by the New York Times, thus the Duchess will not revisit some of its musings here, although in her own words.  She will say that despite a "we've seen this before" plot, "The Town" is well worth a visit to your local Arclight Cinema. 

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