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Town, The


Stars: Ben Affleck, Rebecca Hall, Jon Hamm, Jeremy Renner, Blake Lively, Pete Postlethwaite, Chris Cooper

Director: Ben Affleck

A decent, gritty little thriller, with Affleck who also directed) as the leader of a gang of armed robbers in Boston who have led a charmed life while holding up a series of banks and security vans. But the seeds of their destruction are sown when Affleck's right-hand man and best buddy, the short-fused Jem (Renner) briefly takes the bank manager (Hall) hostage on their latest raid.

Affleck assigns himself to find out how much she knows and, of course, falls in love with her, dreaming for the first time of a future that doesn't include crime.

All the while, the local FBI rep (Mad Men's Hamm) has identified the four robbers, but needs proof to arrest them. Meanwhile, inevitably, Affleck is sucked back into one last job by his boss, The Flower Seller (Postlethwaite) and you fear the worst.

It's a predictable number in everything but the closing stages, which it wouldn't be fair to reveal. Lots of gun-blasting action (in a style that recalls crime films from an earlier era) punctuates the romance between Affleck and Hall, and performances - Hall's especially - are all up to scratch, although Cooper has little to do as Affleck's jailbird father.

David Quinlan

USA 2010. UK Distributor: Warner Brothers. Technicolor.
125 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 1, Drugs 0, Swearing 2.

Review date: 19 Sep 2010