Going in Style

Year: 2017
Director: Zach Braff
Starring: Michael Caine, Alan Arkin, Morgan Freeman 
Written by Andrew Garrison

I have longed to watch a good comedy for a while, but so many “comedy” films today are either terribly unfunny, or raunchy to the extent that is too gross to be funny.  I wanted a mature film that could make me smile and laugh like the comedy films of old did. ‘Going in Style’, featuring the talents of Morgan Freeman, Michael Caine, and Alan Arkin felt like a film that could do this. Additionally, director Zach Braff has proven himself a competent director, although he may have still peaked in the television series ‘Scrubs’.  ‘Going in Style’ is about three elderly men who find themselves being given a bad deal thanks to some greedy companies and bank loaners, who then decide to rob a bank so they can live comfortably and take care of their various personal issues. I’m delighted to say, despite its flaws, this film proved to be the comedy I’ve been waiting for.

I must say that the first act of this film is poorly written; I didn’t like the dialogue, the jokes weren’t funny, and nothing was timed well. It felt to me that this film was going to be an absolute mess. Everything about this film improved in the final two acts, but the humour didn’t always sit right. This film is comical, but it had potential to be so much more and never reached it.

While not so much a flaw, it is a concept that some could consider overused – about how the elderly still has value in society, about how being old doesn’t mean you stop living. The classic idea of staying young-at-heart even if the rest of you isn’t. This film taps into that notion quite well.

As mentioned before, the final two acts of this film are enjoyable and funny, with several moments leading to hearty laughter.  The talented cast find their groove and provide us with some quality entertainment. 

While certainly not the first film to do so, I did appreciate that this movie went after the treachery of major corporations and large banks – how they rob many less fortunate blind and pick up massive profits in the end. Meanwhile others lose their homes, their very livelihoods, and their hopes and dreams. It is among the greatest injustices of our time and too little has been done to stop it. By no means do I think a bank heist or something illegal is the correct path, but I liked that vein of thinking this film has; a sense of justice to those so sorely wronged.

As well as the A-list main cast members, the other cameos and bit-parts in this movie are wonderful, with so many familiar faces and voices doing wonderful things – I would love to see more from many of them.

‘Going in Style’ had a rough time getting together, but once established, it proved a worthwhile comedy, with a list of talented actors and an amazing secondary cast. This film turned out a delightful change of pace compared to the majority of raunchy comedies which currently litter the present movie landscape. If you have enjoyed the comedy style of Braff before, you likely won’t be disappointed here. 

Andrew’s rating: 6.6 out of 10
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