Print review of Logan Lucky (Bleecker Street) for the 24th August edition of The Oxford Paper and Oxfordshire Guardian from Taylor Newspapers.
“Soderbergh is clearly aware that Logan Lucky is a deep-south mirror image of his hugely successful Ocean’s 11 remake, even entreating the audience to spot the similarities: a quirky team and plan of action gradually come together to the tune of offbeat comedy set-pieces and jaunty groove tracks, while details are dangled just out of reach until they can be revealed for maximum impact. There’s even another terrible English accent in the mix from Seth MacFarlane, recalling Don Cheadle’s dreadful attempts at cockney rhyming slang.
It’s a satisfying and proven formula with a well-chosen cast on top form – particularly Adam Driver’s deadpan delivery and Daniel Craig’s enjoyably trashy anti-Bond – and Soderbergh is in full directorial show-off mode. Known for visual storytelling, his lack of expository dialogue is striking, instead presenting visual cues and isolated scenes for the audience to stitch together themselves. While this leads to some confusion as plot threads multiply, it also allows time for character and comedy moments, most obviously seen in an absurdly extended sequence featuring an impromptu science lesson.
Logan Lucky is a show of confidence from a director regarded as a disruptive force in the film industry, and not just in style – according to Entertainment Weekly, Soderbergh avoided traditional distribution and marketing methods in an effort to challenge the status quo of gigantic, spiralling production budgets. This makes it a film many people will have their eyes on, either in cinemas or via box office receipts. Personally, I recommend the former.”
Cast & Crew
Director(s): Steven Soderbergh
Writer(s): Rebecca Blunt
Starring: Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, Seth MacFarlane, Riley Keough, Katie Holmes, Katherine Waterston, Dwight Yoakam, Sebastian Stan, Hilary Swank, Daniel Craig