Uncut Gems - Review (London Film Festival 2019)
When the Fun Stops, Stop. 4.5 / 5
Directed by Josh Safdie & Benny Safdie. A charismatic New York City jeweler always on the lookout for the next big score makes a series of high-stakes bets that could lead to the windfall of a lifetime. Howard must perform a precarious high-wire act, balancing business, family, and encroaching adversaries on all sides in his relentless pursuit of the ultimate win.
Attending my first ever Surprise Film at the London Film Festival did not let me down as I was presented with the intense and darkly funny Uncut Gems.
I didn't think it was possible, but I was proven wrong: Adam Sandler cares again. And he is back with one of the sleaziest and transformative performances of recent years.
Fuelled by greed, money, and power this is one of the most stressful films I have ever seen. It's loud and in your face, everyone is constantly talking over one another getting louder and louder in an attempt for dominance. The camera work is tight and energetic, it’s fast-paced rarely giving you a second to breathe. The score is unlike anything I have ever heard, it's an amalgamation of so many different styles stacked on top of each other and it really adds to the impending atmosphere.
I think this may win the award for most f-bombs in a film with one in almost every line. Sandler's vocal cords must be shredded, you can see him give his all for you to believe him as this scumbag character.
Getting involved with the wrong people and playing dangerous games, it keeps escalating and when you think it stops, it hits you with another dose of adrenaline and keeps going.
This is the Safdie Brothers' passion project, it's what they wanted to make and now they finally have the chance to go all out and that's exactly what they do.
With clear inspirations from 70's and 80's crime films and with New York's aggressive spirit at its core, Good Time may have put the Safdie's on the map, but Uncut Gems is their masterpiece.