Nominee #9 - The Town (2010)
With a Boston bank robber falling in love with one of the hostages from a bank heist, he has a dangerous game to play with his partners in crime and the cops.
With a Boston bank robber falling in love with one of the hostages from a bank heist, he has a dangerous game to play with his partners in crime and the cops. Assured directing and a fine performance from Jeremy Renner as the unhinged criminal friend of the protagonist make this a compelling story about the consequences of a life in crime.
Released in 2010, The Town is a well-known American crime thriller co-written, directed by, and featuring Ben Affleck. The script was adapted from the novel, “Prince of Thieves”, written by Chuck Hogan. The rest of the cast includes Jeremy Renner, Jon Hamm, Rebecca Hall, and Blake Lively.
The film follows four close, lifelong friends: Doug, Jenn, Gloansy, and Dez, who are robbing a bank. They take Claire, the assistant manager, as a hostage, but they release her unharmed. Later, they discover that Claire lives in the same neighbourhood as they do, so Doug decides to follow her to find out how much she’s reported to the police.
Doug gets close to Claire and tells her about his long-lost mother and his hockey career and she tells him that she saw a tattoo on one of the gang. Doug realizes she can identify Jem and discourages her from talking to the cops.
Perhaps one reason this film stands out is the interplay it creates between the characters, the inner conflicts, the emotional attachments and complications in relationships.
One night, Claire tells Doug about being harassed by a Dominican thug, so he asks Jem for help. The wear hockey masks and beat the crap out of the thugs without Jem knowing they’re really protecting Claire.
Meanwhile, they’re under surveillance by FBI Agent Adam Frawley; he knows they’re tied to crime lord Fergie who has another job for them. Meanwhile, Doug talks to his father about his plans to leave for Florida. Their next job goes sideways and they’re interrogated by Frawley but soon released.
Frawley decides to wiretap Claire’s phone, discovers she’s seeing Doug, and threatens to prosecute her as an accomplice. She discovers the truth about Doug, splits up with him, and begins collaborates with the FBI.
Meanwhile, Doug doesn’t want to be a part of another job but he’s pressured by Fergie and Jem, who threaten to kill Claire if he doesn’t. They go through with the robbery, but they’re surrounded by the FBI thanks to a tip provided by Jem’s sister. A gunfight ensues where Dez and Gloansy are killed.
Doug kills Fergie because he knows Claire will never be safe and he will never be able to escape as long as he’s alive. Claire tips him off and he makes his escapes.
Claire then finds a buried bag full of stolen money and a note from Doug, suggesting she can put the money to better use and that they might meet again. She donates the money to refurbish the ice hockey arena where Doug used to play, and at the end we see him looking out over the water, safe in Florida.
Perhaps one reason this film stands out is the interplay it creates between the characters, the inner conflicts, the emotional attachments and complications in relationships. Sure, this movie has great heist sequences but it achieves an outcome greater than the sum of its parts; arguably one of Ben Affleck’s best films!