The Town’s Biggest Butthead

“It’s a town full of losers. And I’m pulling out of here to win.”-Born to Run

The Town‘s “critically” acclaimed director, Ben Affleck, earned enough praise from his Gone Baby Gone debut that this time around he’s confident enough to add a co-writer and lead actor cred too. Set in blue-collar Charlestown, Massachusetts, the “bank robbery capital of America” you’d think these bankers and FBI agents would have had surveillance or some better locks (it’s called kryptonite!) or that these gangsters would have to be a team of Ocean 11 charmers. Alas, no. The film starts off with habit masked trick or treaters, douche-bag Dougy MacRay (Ben Affleck), a reborn recovering alcoholic/drug abuser and “mastermind,” and homeboy, wildcard Jem Coughlin (Jeremy Renner), holding up and pointlessly kidnapping “toonie” bank teller, Claire Keesey (Rebecca Hall), who upon her release is questioned by pretty boy FBI agent, Adam Frawley (Jon Hamm). Which poses threat to these townies when they find that in this one square mile town Claire lives around the corner. So Dougy decides to creep and ask Claire out to after taking pity on her crying in a laundromat over some blood stains.

Nothing like a Dunkin Donuts to charm the pants off a girl eh? Followed by a series of  confessions about tortured pasts, “My mother left…,” “My Brother died,” these two skip the small talk and fall fast as Dougy is inspired by her volunteer gardening and assistant teaching to give up the robbing business for good.

Ben admits to wanting to do this script so that he could play the part, but picked the most pathetic of them and is out-shined by Rener who proves he can act outside The Hurtlocker, and John Hamm, who plays Don Drapper, showing no sympathy for anyone and doing whatever it takes to take down these ruffians. Even Blake Lively, who Ben wanted to “give the opportunity to surprise people as a talented actress,” adds a Boston accent to her skank whore role from Gossip Girl, to Ben’s lap. But other than that and some good car chases these Boston track suit wearing townies are leaving a story as dull as it’s title.

“Uh oh B. This just in; life isn’t a fairy tale, and happy endings are few and far between. Forget a grand entrance – Everyone knows that it’s the exit they’ll remember. XOXO” – Gossip Girl

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “The Town’s Biggest Butthead

  1. mplo

    This film is a hyped-up overrated, feature-length soap opera that’s more suitable for TV than as a regular movie.

    The Town not only glorifies the worst aspects of Boston’s history, but it sends a message that it’s okay to break the law any old time one wants, provided that they can get away with it, and to be an accessory to the crimes of someone who acted deceitful to them in the first place, and to put all law enforcement people in a bad light; like the criminals are the good guys and the FBI are the bad guys.

    There are four types of people who like The Town:

    A) Naive or willfully ignorant people, whether they’re from the Boston area or not, and who’re unaware of the more sordid aspects of Boston’s history.

    B) People, whoever they may be, who enjoy just plain hyped-up junk.

    C) People who whether they’re from the Boston area or not, long for the days when Boston was at its meanspirited and most vicious.

    D) People, who for whatever reason(s), have run afoul of law enforcement people and are therefore more likely to sympathize with the criminals and the people who love/abet them.

  2. Huge Affleck fan as well. Dude just picks terrible prjcoets to be in. Still does too. I can’t figure it out. He’s doing this Company Men movie now about people who got laid off from their jobs during the recession, and it looks like the most schmaltzy crap I’ve ever seen in my life. Great cast though. Tommy Lee Jones and Affleck are the leads. He’s too smart to be an actor though. It makes sense his first flick was Gone Baby Gone, which was a near crime masterpiece. He’s got a filmmaker’s head. He’s a very good analytical thinker, which is obvious from the several times he’s been a guest on Real Time with Bill Maher, one of the best talk shows on TV I can’t stand. I’m super excited to see what he does with The Town because the trailer is frickin’ fantastic.

    • mplo

      I guess it’s to each their own, but Affleck, imho, just simply doesn’t cut it as an actor, really. I liked him in “Good Will Hunting”, and he did a wonderful job directing “Gone Baby Gone”, but “The Town” fell way short of its potential for being a good, or possibly a great movie. Doug was too much of a pretty-boy to be believable as Doug, and Rebecca Hall didn’t really make that great a Claire, plus the immature Doug-Claire romance took up much too much of the story. I also might add that the ending in both the theatrical and the Extended versions of The Town fell way flat.

      I dislike the message that this movie sends to me personally; that arrogance, stupidity, lack of accountability, mayhem, murder and destruction and the endangerment of innocent people are perfectly okay as long as people get what they want.

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