Live By Night (2016) Friday, 03 April 2020

Live By Night (2016)

Additional Info

  • Rating:

    MA15+: Strong coarse language.

  • The pitch:

    Repent, repent.

  • Starring:

    Ben Affleck, Chris Messina, Elle Fanning, Sienna Miller, Zoe Saldana, Brendan Gleeson, Robert Glenister, Chris Cooper

  • Directed by:

    Ben Affleck

  • Running time:

    129 minutes

  • Rated:

    MA15+ (Australia), 15 (UK), R (USA)


    People are shot, punched, beaten, thrown from high ledges, stabbed, throat-slit, threatened, grabbed, thrown up against walls/to the ground, stomped on, kicked, slapped, hit with objects, robbed, pistol-whipped. Members of the Ku Klux Klan, burning crucifix seen. A man canes his daughter. Businesses are shot up, exploded, robbed. Shootouts (high body count). Images of WWI action (soldiers, trenches, explosions, corpses, injuries, bandages, etc). Footage of Nazi Germany (soldiers, swastikas, etc). Car chase, vehicles/street stalls rammed, car in lake, burning vehicles, car crash, car rollover. Houses burned/shot. Bottle thrown/smashed. A man says "I will cut your tits off and throw you in the dump" to a woman. People are threatened with being shot, thrown under a train, throat-slit, tarred and feathered. Death penalty, cop killer, woman cut her own throat mentioned. Blood/gore: Bloody heads, faces, mouth, teeth, chin, cuts, grazes, bullet wounds (open flesh seen), bandages, clothing. Blood spatter, pooling/gushing/dripping blood. Burning/bloodied corpses. Bruising, bandages, scar. Images of dead man in barbed wire, man with shot/bloodied face, corpses. Cemeteries. People on crutches, in wheelchair. Broken nose, broken ribs, man in coma mentioned.


    Couples have sex in bedrooms, on couch. Flirting, kissing, caressing, undressing, suggestive dancing. Pictures of semi-nude girl in evocative positions (breasts exposed). Cleavage. A woman says her father was a pimp. A man blackmails another man with information about the former's homosexuality. Libidinous behaviour, fornication, bestiality mentioned.


    Junkie daughter (needle tracks on arms seen). Alcohol (beer, spirits, champagne). Smoking (cigarettes, cigars). Poker game. Bar settings. Narcotics, hooch, heroin, gambling, casino, booze, drug addicts mentioned.


    F-words, s-words, a-words, n-word. Name-calling (dumb, stupid, wops, rough, trash, mole, putana, whore, gangster, dirty spics, diego, daygo, inbreds, bootlegger, fornicator, sh*tpickers, Communist, crook, darkies, mick, nance, n*gger, smart guy, dunce, etc). Religious references and exclamations (Jesus, devil, Catholics, hellfire, Christian, God, heaven, hell, Jesus Christ, etc).


    1920s USA, Prohibition, gangsters, mob families, corruption, speakeasies, racism, bootlegging, drug addiction, sin, penitence, betrayal, gambling.


    Dead father, dead girlfriend, dead wife. Dead mother mentioned. Cemetery, bar, prison/asylum, church settings. Marriage proposal. Animal fur rug, sides of hanging meat, fur coats. Vomiting. Horses, dolphins, alligators. Fireworks. Brief Spanish (subtitles).


    Watchable, stylish, bloody, ambitious, well-intentioned. Fabulous costumes, sleek/resplendent production design, elegant framing, gorgeous cinematography, richly detailed period pieces, unexpectedly timely white supremacy plot thread, engrossing/compelling at times.


    Messy, sprawling, over-plotted, unexceptional, cramped, rote, sappy, over-engineered, bewildering, overstuffed, disappointing, baggy, mediocre, unfocused, slow, serious, peculiar, dim, dull, sleepy, humourless. Muddled/halting storytelling, too many sub-plots, some flavourless/underdeveloped/perfunctory characters, lifeless/bland performance by Ben Affleck, anticlimatic finale.

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