Compiled by: Jack Foley
CLINT Eastwoods latest directorial outing may have been
going up against the likes of Kill
Bill: Volume One and the Coens Intolerable
Cruelty when it opened in America on the weekend commencing
October 10, 2003, but the reviews let cinema-goers positively
spoilt for choice.
Mystic River, for instance, is being hailed as Eastwoods
finest work since Unforgiven,
while Kill Bill, of course, marks the return of Quentin Tarantino,
and Intolerable Cruelty marks the latest outing for everyones
favourites, the Coen Brothers.
As for Mystic River, Eastwoods tale of three childhood
friends whose traumatic past comes back to haunt them in later
life, following the murder of one of their daughters, the notices
have been glowing, prompting early talk of a possible Oscar nod.
Box Office Magazine sums it up well, when it states that
the film is a whodunit with a deeply emotional core, thanks
to LA Confidential scripter, Brian Helgeland's richly crafted,
textured screenplay and the superb ensemble cast's outstanding
individual performances and collective chemistry.
Entertainment Weekly referred to it, simply, as a
classic whodunit, while the New York Times declared,
joyfully, that Mystic River is the rare American movie that
aspires to - and achieves - the full weight and darkness of tragedy.
Rolling Stone stated that it is a movie of startling
power and intimacy, while the Los Angeles Times felt
that it is Eastwood's best direction since Unforgiven and
arguably the best, most mature work of his career.
The San Francisco Examiner, meanwhile, stated that it
would be wrong to single out any one of these performances. Eastwood
has assembled a bonanza cast here and each comes out shining.
Even the negatives werent too negative, with the New
York Post stating that it is a haunting, ambitious but
ultimately flawed film, that treads some of the same sombre moral
territory director Clint Eastwood explored in Unforgiven.
But, by and large, the negatives were few and far between, with
the Chicago Sun-Times furthering the accolades by declaring
that Mystic River leads moviegoers on a suspense-filled,
sometimes painful adventure marked by great performances.
Hollywood Reporter, meanwhile, felt that it is a crisp,
well-made, visually astute film, that will provoke and divide
[Eastwood's] admirers, while Village Voice opined
that it Eastwood's 24th directorial feature is his most
ambitious in a decade.
Rounding off this overview, however, are the San Francisco
Chronicle, which concluded that at nearly two and a
half hours, Mystic River proves that a mystery need not be taut
to be riveting, and the Toronto Star, which hits
the nail on the head by stating that it is a movie to closely
watch and to savour; the confident direction and the flawless
ensemble performances are, quite simply, worthy of Oscars.
The film opens in UK cinemas on October 17.