Going in Style, 2017.
Directed by Zach Braff
Starring Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Alan Arkin, Joey King, Peter Serafinowitz, Christopher Lloyd, Kenan Thompson, John Ortiz and Matt Dillon
Desperate to pay the bills and come through for their loved ones, three lifelong pals risk it all by embarking on a daring bid to knock off the very bank that absconded with their money.
Following up his previous directorial efforts, Zach Braff moves away completely from his indie offbeat routes to deliver an entertaining but by the numbers OAP heist comedy. Joe (Caine), Willie (Freeman) and Al (Arkin) are a trio of friends who spent 30+ years working for a steel manufacturer. Now their days are filled with trips to the local diner, estimating how many years they have left to live and worrying about money. After their pension is frozen and Joe witnesses a bank robbery, the trio set out to pull off a heist of their own.
Going in Style definitely has its moments. Arkin as the curmudgeonly Al delivers the strongest performance of the three and there are some laugh out loud moments. The trio practicing for their heist by attempting to rob the Value Mart for the ingredients for a cordon bleu is hilarious. There aren’t many sophisticated jokes throughout the movie, it’s more of a combination of old man humour, sex and a few bits of physical comedy. It is a perfectly serviceable 96 minute film but it’s the type of film that you pretty much forget as soon as you leave the cinema.
Braff and screenwriter Theodore Melfi (Hidden Figures) had the opportunity to delve deeper into what it means to be older in the 21st century but instead of exploring this we get a standard heist comedy that lacks sophistication. Braff is usually an exciting filmmaker but here in his first big studio project his creative flair is nowhere to be seen. There’s also a lack of character development and the three key characters have backstories that we’ve seen a thousand times.
Going in Style is easy to enjoy and simple to watch. It’s a shame that with such a talented cast and crew, they weren’t able to deliver something original.
Flickering Myth Rating: Film: ★ ★ / Movie: ★ ★