Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Wednesday Movie Night: Win Win (2011)

Thomas McCarthy has been a writer for some of the more touching stories you've seen brought to the screen like Up. Now he's not only writing, but also directing his movies as well. Win Win is a solid movie from the screenwriter that shows the same type of emotion he is capable of offering, and the relationship between older and younger men as well. Win Win is solid, but still there is something that lacks in it resonating long after. Maybe it's just too feel good? Regardless, it is a very solid written, and well acted movie.

Summary: Mike is a struggling lawyer who also volunteer coaches a wrestling team. One of the clients he is defending is a rich man who pays out around $1500 a month to his caretaker. Mike agrees to be his guardian to keep the state from taking over guardianship, and agrees that in being his guardian he will make arrangements for him to continue to live in his home. Instead Mike double crosses the guy, and sends him to a nursing home, so he can instead use the $1500 a month to keep his practice alive, and his family supported. The grandson of the man he is now stealing from though arrives to live with with his grandfather though complicating his plans.

Acting: Paul Giamatti is Mike, and this seems like the perfect role for Giamatti. He seems like a real guy, and he meshes into becoming more likable as the movie goes very well. Amy Ryan is his wife, Jackie. Ryan is very likable, and one of the better parts of the movie. She provides much of the humor for the movie along with Bobby Cannavale as Terry. Jeffery Tambor is one of the other wrestling coaches, Stephen, but honestly doesn't really get enough screen time for me to make an assessment about what he contributes. Alex Shaffer is the grandson, Kyle, and shows a lot of potential for a young actor who is just getting his start.

Filming: This movie has this atmosphere that is captured well in the movie. It isn't too bright, so that does balance the predictable feel good vibe of the movie.  The movie is also set in winter, and the blue cast emphasizes that. The shots outside of that aren't going to wow, or have this very characteristic vibe, but I found the lighting and the way the movie plays out to be simply good.

Plot: Somehow the plot does catch you as it goes on. I didn't figure this movie could end bad, but I like how it gives a lot of growth for all the characters in the run time of the movie, and it was a movie that wasn't too short, but felt it went by quick because the story does bring you into the movie. Kyle seems to almost show no emotion throughout, but when he does it feels true to his character. This movie is also a good movie about family and also one men trying to step and do the right thing in the middle of pressure to turn to the easiest solution.

Win Win has a lot of good elements about the movie. Plus, if you are a sports fan this does offer a movie revolving around a teen's interest in the sport that tightens him to this family. The movie is sort of easy to predict where it is going, but sometimes it's just really nice to have a movie that makes you feel good instead of trying to be so real it gets you down. The lead cast does a good job with portraying real people as well.

Rating 8 of 10.

Win Win (2011) on IMDb

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