Reviews - Specialty Releases


Film Review: Cold Comes the Night

He's playing a bad guy again, but Bryan Cranston's Slavic-accented criminal is no Walter White and this is no "Breaking Bad."

Jan 10, 2014

-By Frank Scheck


filmjournal/photos/stylus/1392408-Cold_Comes_The_Night_Md.jpg

For movie details, please click here.

Serving as another reminder of the gap in quality between dramatic episodic television and most of what shows up on theatre screens, Cold Comes the Night marks Bryan Cranston’s first big-screen appearance since wrapping up his award-winning run on “Breaking Bad.” While the actor lends his formidable presence to the proceedings, this rote thriller mainly succeeds in squandering his talents. Being given a limited theatrical release, the film will likely generate some interest on home-video formats thanks to the cast that also includes British actress Alice Eve ( Star Trek Into Darkness) and Logan Marshall-Green ( Prometheus).

Cranston, looking much like he did in his last season as Walter White, plays Topo, a visually impaired career criminal running drug money through upstate New York en route to Canada. When his hapless nephew/driver gets killed in a violent encounter with a prostitute at a seedy motel, their car containing the loot gets impounded by the police. 

The half-blind Topo is thus forced to resort to kidnapping the motel’s proprietress, Chloe (Eve), and her young daughter (Ursula Parker) to retrieve the money with the help of her former boyfriend (Marshall-Green), a crooked cop who has access to the impounded car. Double-crosses and violent confrontations ensue, with Chloe attempting to score some of the cash herself to stave off the state authorities who threaten to take her daughter away.

Director Tze Chun manages to provide some taut atmospherics to the proceedings but is ultimately hampered by the contrived situations and cliché-ridden dialogue of the screenplay he’s co-written with Nick Simon and Osgood Perkins (Anthony’s son). Not helping matters is the thick Slavic accent Cranston employs, making him sound like he’s auditioning for a regional theatre production of Dracula.

Still, the actor is undeniably compelling, delivering a physically minimalist performance that generates much tension with mere stillness. And, in a marked departure from her usual eye-candy roles, Eve, sporting a credible American accent, is also very effective, providing unexpected layers of toughness to her sympathetic character.

-The Hollywood Reporter


Film Review: Cold Comes the Night

He's playing a bad guy again, but Bryan Cranston's Slavic-accented criminal is no Walter White and this is no "Breaking Bad."

Jan 10, 2014

-By Frank Scheck


filmjournal/photos/stylus/1392408-Cold_Comes_The_Night_Md.jpg

For movie details, please click here.

Serving as another reminder of the gap in quality between dramatic episodic television and most of what shows up on theatre screens, Cold Comes the Night marks Bryan Cranston’s first big-screen appearance since wrapping up his award-winning run on “Breaking Bad.” While the actor lends his formidable presence to the proceedings, this rote thriller mainly succeeds in squandering his talents. Being given a limited theatrical release, the film will likely generate some interest on home-video formats thanks to the cast that also includes British actress Alice Eve (Star Trek Into Darkness) and Logan Marshall-Green (Prometheus).

Cranston, looking much like he did in his last season as Walter White, plays Topo, a visually impaired career criminal running drug money through upstate New York en route to Canada. When his hapless nephew/driver gets killed in a violent encounter with a prostitute at a seedy motel, their car containing the loot gets impounded by the police. 

The half-blind Topo is thus forced to resort to kidnapping the motel’s proprietress, Chloe (Eve), and her young daughter (Ursula Parker) to retrieve the money with the help of her former boyfriend (Marshall-Green), a crooked cop who has access to the impounded car. Double-crosses and violent confrontations ensue, with Chloe attempting to score some of the cash herself to stave off the state authorities who threaten to take her daughter away.

Director Tze Chun manages to provide some taut atmospherics to the proceedings but is ultimately hampered by the contrived situations and cliché-ridden dialogue of the screenplay he’s co-written with Nick Simon and Osgood Perkins (Anthony’s son). Not helping matters is the thick Slavic accent Cranston employs, making him sound like he’s auditioning for a regional theatre production of Dracula.

Still, the actor is undeniably compelling, delivering a physically minimalist performance that generates much tension with mere stillness. And, in a marked departure from her usual eye-candy roles, Eve, sporting a credible American accent, is also very effective, providing unexpected layers of toughness to her sympathetic character.

-The Hollywood Reporter
Post a Comment
Asterisk (*) is a required field.
* Author: 
Rate This Article: (1=Bad, 5=Perfect)

*Comment:
 

More Specialty Releases

Drive Hard
Film Review: Drive Hard

A car-chase-heavy clunker whose vehicular set-pieces are almost as lame as the recurring sight of star John Cusack attempting to look cool while firing pistols. More »

Harmontown
Film Review: Harmontown

Open-nerve documentary about “Community” creator Dan Harmon’s chaotic live podcast tour after being fired from his own TV show is sometimes raggedly funny, but truly a fans-only artifact. More »

The Liberator
Film Review: The Liberator

Impressively mounted but overly truncated take on a great historical figure about whom much more needs to be known. More »

The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin
Film Review: The Rise and Rise of Bitcoin

Wide-ranging primer is involving but leaves some details hazy. More »

ADVERTISEMENT



REVIEWS

The Equalizer Review
Film Review: The Equalizer

Former agent is drawn out of hiding to fight a Russian gang in a reboot of the 1980s television series. More »

The Boxtrolls
Film Review: The Boxtrolls

Another amazingly meticulous and stylish stop-motion tale from the Laika studio, this time focusing on a boy adopted by a population of maligned underground trolls. More »

Player for the Film Journal International website.


ADVERTISEMENT



INDUSTRY GUIDES

» Blue Sheets
FJI's guide to upcoming movie releases, including films in production and development. Check back weekly for the latest additions.

» Distribution Guide
» Equipment Guide
» Exhibition Guide

ORDER A PRINT SUBSCRIPTION

Film Journal International

Subscribe to the monthly print edition of Film Journal International and get the full visual impact of this valuable resource for the cinema business.

» Click Here

SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

Learn how to promote your company at the Film Expo Group events: ShowEast, CineEurope, and CineAsia.

» Click Here