Good Time – Film Review
Directors: Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie
Writers: Ronald Bronstein, Josh Safdie
Stars: Robert Pattinson, Benny Safdie, Jennifer Jason Leigh
We are introduced to Nick Nikas, played by co-director Benny Safdie, as he struggles with an IQ test. Nick is mentally ill and not suited for such examinations, growing frustrated by the line of questioning. The psychologist carrying out the test continues to probe as the young man fails to answer various quizzes and trials by paper. Connie Nikas (Robert Pattinson) then arrives to take his brother away from the proceedings and whisk him off to something altogether more nefarious. You see, Connie has a plan to get rich quick and it involves a bank heist! As you would expect, things do not go according to plan.
This is a new film directed by the Safdie brothers; Benny and Josh. They have previously made other films about the seedy underbelly (why is it always seedy?) of society such as Heaven Knows What (2014) but they lacked the star power of this new production, with both Pattinson and Jennifer Jason Leigh playing prominent roles.While this film is quite unusual and interesting in many ways, it will not launch the brothers on a stellar career by itself.
It would be hard not to note the direction Pattinson has gone in since making his last teen vampire flick, some five years ago. He has worked with a variety of underground and indie film makers, like he is atoning for former sins. He has worked with David Cronenberg twice (Cosmopolis and Maps to the Stars), David Michôd (The Rover), James Gray (The Lost City of Z) and more besides. If he wasn’t such a big name already you’d mark him as up and coming! He has been in continuous work and a lot of it quite interesting, but he certainly has rejected the red carpet for another route. In truth, from his early career path, you would have expected him to be featuring in the other major release this week; the Justice League! He would have made a good Flash.
The plot of this film twists and turns in a variety of different directions. It mostly takes place over the course of one night where Connie (Pattinson) makes some terrible choices, trying to out run the forces gathered against him. The film revolves around Pattinson and the other characters flit in and out of the story as required. At times it can feel like watching someone playing Grand Theft Auto, such is the madness on display. The script is wild and unconventional, which has its benefits and draw backs in equal measure. It is something very different from the main stream, much like Pattinson himself these days.