Going in StyleCultureCinemaMovie reviews
A classic Hollywood feel-good comedy, Zack Braff’s Going in Style is about long-time friends who decide to rob a bank. Recalling buddy heist movies like Set It Off and Mad Money, the Robin Hood-style caper gratifies in the satisfaction it gives the viewer that there can be justice in this world. Another story with the corporate greed versus the little guy theme, it follows three ageing men who have been bilked out of their money and who plan a bank robbery to get it back.
Classic beloved actors Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman and Alan Arkin are on top of their game, as usual, as retirees who have worked hard all their lives and now – when they should be benefitting from the fruits of their labour – find themselves victimised by unscrupulous corporations. Close to losing everything, in desperation they resolve to commit a bank heist.
Although the creators of Going in Style use a fairly formulaic approach – more noticeable from a foreigner’s perspective – it is a prescription that succeeds. The blueprint provides pleasure: the movie is hilariously funny, well acted by popular performers, cleverly written and conceived, and offers a feeling of relief in a harsh world. It assures us that everything is going to be OK, the good guys win in the end and the bad guys are punished – and also suggests that justice might allow rules to be bent.
Having worked together in six prior films, Freeman and Caine could be considered a veteran team; they are first-rate artists and their onscreen chemistry is palpable. Alan Arkin is equally superb as a cynic who is gradually coaxed into revealing his romantic side. Both as poignantly dramatic and as comic actors the trio are outstanding and, helped by good writing, they are uproariously funny.
The winsome, long-time icon Ann Margret is back and terrific as Arkin’s love interest. Christopher Lloyd is great as the flaky Milton, Matt Dillon is debonair and silly as the rabidly determined FBI agent Hamer, and little Annabelle Chow is adorable as a police witness with a heart of gold. All the actors do a fine job in this piece. Cinematography and direction are clearly also of the high calibre expected from this kind of production.
A fun, heart-warming flick with fantastic performances that leaves a smile on your face, Going in Style is recommended viewing.
Going in Style is released nationwide on 7th April 2017.
Watch the trailer for Going in Style here: