Review: Life Of Crime (2013)

Life Of Crime

Adapted for the screen by writer-director Daniel Schechter, Life Of Crime is a slow-burning, character-driven adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s novel The Switch that never quite reaches its full potential, yet sparkles nonetheless. Louis (John Hawkes) and Ordell (Mos Def), two small time crooks, hatch a plan to kidnap Mickey (Jennifer Aniston), the wife of businessman Frank (Tim Robbins). More low hum than buzz, Life Of Crime follows a similar trajectory as various spanners are thrown in the works, none more thwarting than Frank’s plan to divorce Mickey. But the script is pithy, and Schechter keeps the direction muted in order to pull focus to the distinctive dialogue and multi-layered characters. It’s arguably the cast, then, that hurl the film forward. Aniston is the best she’s been in years, proving what a skilled actress she is when well utilised, while Hawkes, Def and Will Forte all match pace. Life Of Crime may not be the film it aspires to be, but it’s an entertaining caper that benefits from a superb cast, lifelike 1970s stylings and a strong script.

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