Steven Soderbergh is the undisputed king of slick heist movies. The acclaimed director of classic flicks like the Ocean’s trilogy has already perfected the method of bringing crime capers to the screen with his signature brand of style and pizzazz on multiple occasions. So it therefore comes as no surprise to learn that Logan Lucky is of similar quality to the director’s previous accomplishments…
Starring Channing Tatum and Adam Driver as two down-on-their-luck blue-collar brothers Jimmy and Clyde Logan, each complete with axes to grind, the film details the boy’s endeavors as they attempt to rob the Charlotte Motor Speedway of millions using the maintenance tunnel network beneath the stadium. Recruiting their younger sister Mellie (Riley Keough) and a trio of redneck brothers, including an incarcerated explosives expert Joe Bang (Daniel Craig), the brother embark on their almost impossible robbery with the odds stacked firmly against them.
Logan Lucky plays out like the anti-Oceans 11 – the style and humour from Soderbergh‘s earlier work remains a constant throughout, but the more ramshackle, less orthodox characters and situations lend the movie a refreshing air of insanity and ridiculousness, serving to enhance a plot which, on paper, reads as pretty threadbare.
The story of these assorted hick town heroes is consistently funny from start to finish. The jokes and interactions border on outrageous and hysterical from the off and fail to let-up, even in the film’s more intense and dramatic moments. The snappy dialogue zips from witty comeback to tear-inducing craziness in brisk fashion, never pausing for breath until the time credits roll.
As performances go, the ones on offer here are comedic perfection – exaggerated yet still grounded in reality (aside from Seth McFarlane’s rather bizarre British accent). Daniel Craig in particular steals the show, his hillbilly-esque take on Joe Bang resulting in one of this year’s most left field yet ultimately superb performances. If the man wants to quit being 007 to take on more roles like this one, then he has our full support and respect!
The film dips somewhat in places, but the pacing is swift enough so that any moments of stiltedness are few and far between. A romantic subplot of sorts for Tatum‘s Jimmy in the form of Katherine Waterston‘s nurse Sylvia is hastily introduced before disappearing without much comment for the rest of the movie, whilst potentially interesting characters like Mellie get very little to do compared to others. Ultimately though, the film compensates for these minor flaws thanks to some strong comedic moments and it’s genius unpredictable heist set-up.
Steven Soderbergh cut shorts his retirement and knocks this latest outing straight out of the ballpark – oozing confidence, a quirky, free styling attitude and a great deal of charm, Logan Lucky is certainly further proof that Mr. Soderbergh‘s aforementioned crown remains firmly in his possession.
Logan Lucky is out in UK cinemas Friday 25th August.