Thursday, April 17, 2014

Talking Tribeca: Starred Up

I’ve had the pleasure this year of screening a number of selections from this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, which takes place April 16th-27th.

Starred Up
Directed by David Mackenzie
Festival Screenings

Prison is the setting for a number of films at the Tribeca Film Festival this year, and this film embraces its surroundings completely. Jack O’Connell stars as Eric, a violent young offender whose first day in jail finds him clashing physically with guards and inmates alike. One of his new neighbors happens to be his father, Neville, portrayed by Ben Mendelsohn, who was more than memorable in “Animal Kingdom,” another story of a criminal family. O’Connell and Mendelsohn are both terrific, anchoring a captivating, brutal tale of two men who know they’re never getting out of prison and respond to that truth in very different ways. O’Connell in particular plays Eric as a young rabblerouser entertaining himself by causing chaos, unconcerned with what the consequences may be. Rupert Friend, currently starring on “Homeland,” also appears as a psychotherapist who sees potential in Eric to change. This is not an easy film but a very well-made one.

See it or skip it? See it if you’re okay with an upsetting storyline and disturbing visuals.

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