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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars All star cast that could have made it better.
With an all star cast this is a production that has `promise' written all over it but is actually not greater than the sum of its parts. It is set in a depressed part of America referred to as `the rust belt' by the production team. Christian Bale plays Russell Baze who works at the local steel works like his daddy before him. Younger brother Rodney (Casey Affleck) just...
Published 2 months ago by Tommy Dooley

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Oddly compelling
There is something about Scott Cooper's film, "Out of the Furnace", that perpetually niggles away at the back of the mind, making you feel all of the time that it could somehow have been so much better. And yet I for one could not put my finger in just what it is. Perhaps it is no one thing, but a combination of many, all of them interconnected.

There is much...
Published 21 days ago by Steve Benner


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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars All star cast that could have made it better., 27 April 2014
By 
Tommy Dooley (London, England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Out of The Furnace [Blu-ray + UV Copy] [2013] (Blu-ray)
With an all star cast this is a production that has `promise' written all over it but is actually not greater than the sum of its parts. It is set in a depressed part of America referred to as `the rust belt' by the production team. Christian Bale plays Russell Baze who works at the local steel works like his daddy before him. Younger brother Rodney (Casey Affleck) just wants out and has joined the army to escape the hum drum existence of small town USA.

On his return Russell has landed up in prison for a terrible twist of circumstance. Rodney meanwhile has got involved with the world of underground bare knuckle fighting in order to pay off his debts. Problem is this is a world dominated by the likes of Harlan DeGroat - played by an as ever excellent Woody Harrelson. He is the sort of guy that would give you nightmares and he don't take prisoners. Throw into the mix some very unsavoury characters a small but very good part for Willem Dafoe and a caring cop - Forest Whitaker, and you have what should be a more than satisfying crime thriller.

The thing is this should have been excellent - even the music is done by Dickon Hinchliffe (ex of `Tindersticks') and adds excellent mood and pace, but it is still just above pedestrian in places. I think this could be down to the plot which will hold scant few surprises albeit with a few twists along the way. The acting is often from the `mumbling is acting' school, which just makes people hard to understand and some of the on screen antics require a bit too much faith on the part of the viewer. Still this is far from a bad film and is more than adequate to keep you entertained on an evening's video choice and if you are a fan of any of the main stars you will not be let down by their performances.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Oddly compelling, 19 Jun 2014
By 
Steve Benner "Stonegnome" (Lancaster, UK) - See all my reviews
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There is something about Scott Cooper's film, "Out of the Furnace", that perpetually niggles away at the back of the mind, making you feel all of the time that it could somehow have been so much better. And yet I for one could not put my finger in just what it is. Perhaps it is no one thing, but a combination of many, all of them interconnected.

There is much about the film that is, superficially at least, reminiscent of "The Deer Hunter [1978]", with its mix of combat fatigue, world weariness and self-destructive leanings of broken men. It also shares some of the earlier movie's iconic screen moments, which it is hard to believe are coincidental. But the comparison does the film no favours: Christian Bale, good as he is, is no Robert De Niro; the action is so slow-moving as to be glacial and the storyline takes so many sideways hops it is often unclear just what its real message is meant to be.

In summary, then, this is not a bad movie, but neither is it a great one. It is a slow-paced movie, and a depressing movie, and one that feels to have nothing new to bring to the party. And yet, it is oddly compelling and also, in an weird sort of way, almost likeable.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars No spark. Withdrawn acting, uninspired script., 3 Jun 2014
By 
L. Hennessy (Twickenham) - See all my reviews
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There's something wrong with this film. It has a great cast, but even they can't provoke anything from the almost autistically introverted characters who can only express themselves through violence. It's also very very slow - the first hour feels like a build up to something, but then you realise that the payoff at the end is an equally unsatisfying experience.

I felt disengaged and was happy to see the end of this confused and routine movie, despite the presence of some great actors.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I expected more, 3 Jun 2014
By 
Simon Tavener - See all my reviews
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This is a perfectly serviceable film - but it is not the most memorable piece of cinema you will ever encounter.

Given the calibre of the cast, I was surprised that I hadn't heard anything about this before now. Having seen the film, it is clear why it didn't set the box office on fire.

It is what it is - a film that does not deliver on the expectations that having such a decent cast would ordinarily raise. The script is mediocre, the direction serviceable.

It just isn't good enough to make you sit up and really take notice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So - So, 31 May 2014
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The Wolf (uk) - See all my reviews
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Scott Cooper has made a competent but hardly extraordinary thriller
which would probably pass over the horizon unnoticed were it not for
the big bucks which have clearly been shelled out on a stellar cast.

Both Christian Bale and Casey Affleck acquit themselves well as the
brothers Baze, stuck in more than one kind of hell in small-town America.

Forest Whitaker brings a little warmth to an otherwise chilly and not wholly
convincing plot as police chief Wesley Barnes and Woody Harrelson manages
to deliver a convincingly dark performance as the psychopathic DeGroat
but at the end of the day I felt that 'Out Of The Furnace', despite being a
very good looking movie, depended rather more on style than substance.

So-so.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Worth watching., 10 July 2014
This review is from: Out of the Furnace (DVD)
Good film as to be expected with Christopher Bale in it. Good storyline with unusual twists and turns. One to watch for a relaxing evening.
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3.0 out of 5 stars DISAPOINTING IN SOME RESPECTS, 9 July 2014
This review is from: Out of the Furnace (DVD)
Disapointing.Acting is superb,its the story lets it down.

Extremely slow.The jail part was vitually a waste of time,so don't even expect a LOCK UP or prison break or anything.
Not even sure of the point of that part for the story as it was over so quick,you wondered why bother.

Its violent,back to his NATURAL BORN KILLERS days.I don't know whats missing really,its just I think it could have been better.
Perhaps if It had built quicker and the prison scene was worth doing.

Its an ok watch if you're a fan of the actors,but to me it felt missing the element to make me go what a good film.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 6 July 2014
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Very good
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4.0 out of 5 stars a good film, but not an excellent one, 26 Jun 2014
By 
E. Ramshaw - See all my reviews
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first off... this is not a film i would have paid to see in the cinema, it just doesn't stand up against some of the more "blockbuster" movies released in 2013.

I felt Bales performance was standard compared to some of the other actors (Harrelson, Casey Affleck, and Zoe Saldana... watch Columbiana to see why) but is far from what I know is possible from the likes of Reign of Fire, and the Batman trilogy.

it's a typical "man falls on hard times, man brother joins army, mans brother comes home, brother goes missing, man goes on a hunt for brother" and to be honest you could watch something like Taken or Ransom and get a film that typifies the "revenge" genre far better, but this is an enjoyable film that I will certainly pull out to watch again.

I would also say on a more poignant note, this was one of the last films produced by the late Tony Scott... if you were a fan of the man and what he gave to cinema over the years then watch it out of tribute
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3.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent acting masques a pedestrian plot, 19 Jun 2014
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ravenheart (Rayleigh, ENGLAND) - See all my reviews
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There are a few of these every year. Washed out colours, dark tone, stellar cast. Thrillers for which the terms "gritty" and "visceral" are apparently needed. Inevitably slow-paced, these kinds of films often require a significant investment of time and concentration, which the good ones reward with top class performances and a story which delivers on all levels.

Out of The Furnace, the latest effort from Scott Cooper, who's directorial debut Crazy Heart won hatfulls of awards, is not one such movie. It's got the tone, cinematography, and pace of a classic "gritty" thriller, but when it comes down to it, the story is just that well-worn younger brother gets mixed up in something untoward, gets killed, older brother seeks revenge plot that everyone has seen before.

Now granted most people may not have seen it played out with such skill as the cast of this one pull off, particularly main star Christian Bale as the revenge-seeking Russell, Willem Defoe as criminal leader John Petty, Woody Harrelson's lunatic Harlan DeGroat, and Casey Affleck as Bale's younger brother Rodney, but it's still a story that won't pay off at the end because it holds no surprises, stark and poignant though the final scene may be.

When screened on TV, this is worth some time just for the acting, but it's not worth investing any money in.
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Out of The Furnace [Blu-ray + UV Copy] [2013]
Out of The Furnace [Blu-ray + UV Copy] [2013] by Scott Cooper (Blu-ray - 2014)
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