Out of the Furnace Reviews
It's a heavy, solemn tale of blood ties that turns into a melodramatic gusher filled with abstractions about masculinity, America and violence, but brought to specific, exciting life by Christian Bale, Casey Affleck and Woody Harrelson.
Even when it descends into self-consciousness in a lurid final act, "Out of the Furnace" effectively brings viewers into a space where whatever people had to lose was either squandered or stolen.
The picture is earnest to a fault, coming off like an exploration of how "the little people" live, so carefully written that it veritably trumpets how remote it is from the grittiness of its subject matter.
"Out of the Furnace" gets under your skin. Bale's commitment etches a raw portrait of stagnation and sadness. Affleck is heartbreakingly feral, and Dafoe, Harrelson and Whitaker provide solid support.
The macho drama is nicely drawn for most of the movie, with a genuine sense of hard times in millennial America, though Cooper lets it drift into the sort of revenge plot that propels innumerable action movies.
Although Out of the Furnace takes place just a few years back in this new millennium, Scott Cooper's solemn, blood-soaked drama about brothers and broken dreams feels like it's of some different, ancient time.
Yes it has a fine cast, and all do good work. But this overly obvious film about the downward spiral lives of lower-class brothers barely scraping by in life goes through mostly expected motions.