"Bleak Family Dysfunction"
What You Need To Know:
The acting in this crime thriller is excellent, despite the lower budget. The tragedy, however, is very bleak. The brothers are estranged from their father. This sets up the inevitable tragic ending. To be truly effective, however, tragedy requires a main character with traits that are worth saving, despite his flaw. For instance, Hamlet is a likeable fellow, despite his problems. Thus, BEFORE THE DEVIL KNOWS YOU’RE DEAD offers no solid redemptive elements for viewers. It also contains excessive foul language, some very strong violence, and explicit sex and nudity.
(HH, C, Ho, AP, LLL, VVV, SS, NN, A, DD, MM) Bleak humanist worldview about two flawed brothers who commit a crime leading to other crimes, their sister makes a positive reference to Jesus Christ being the answer in the wake of their mother’s tragic death and their father tries to make amends, but one brother overtly rejects her advice and tells his father that he’s too late with the apologies, plus a Christian funeral with a reference to redemption from Jesus Christ, but none of the main characters turns to God or Christianity to resolve their problems, a drug dealer appears to be a homosexual, and American police are apathetic about a deadly robbery in the suburbs, which doesn’t seem a likely portrayal of what it’s like to live in America; 105 obscenities, 18 strong profanities and eight light profanities; some very strong violence such as point blank shootings, gunfight during jewelry robbery, man crashes through plate glass, murder; depicted sex between married couple and adulterous couple; shots of upper female nudity and some rear nudity; alcohol use; smoking, man snorts cocaine and man shoots heroin; and, robbery, stealing, lying, blackmail, man argues with ex-wife about alimony and child support but he doesn’t have much money or prospects anyway, and sons estranged from father.
BEFORE THE DEVIL KNOWS YOU’RE DEAD is a crime thriller about a jewelry heist that goes bad.
Two brothers, Hank and Andy, need lots of money quickly. Hank can’t pay his alimony and child support, and Andy is an embezzler who has a heroin addiction. Andy comes to Hank with a proposal to rob a place, but won’t reveal the place until Hank agrees to do it. Hank agrees, but learns that Andy proposes that they rob their own parents’ jewelry store in the suburbs. Andy makes Hank pull the robbery, because Andy was seen casing the place. Hank is too chicken, however, to pull the robbery by himself, so he hires his stupid friend Bobby.
Hank makes Bobby pull the robbery. Unknown to Hank and Andy, however, their mother has opened the store that morning. A shootout between Bobby and their mother results in Bobby dead and their mother fatally wounded.
Hank and Andy desperately search for a solution, but Bobby’s brother-in-law blackmails Hank. And, Andy learns that his own wife has been cheating on him with his brother, Hank. Meanwhile, their father investigates the robbery himself, because the police are uninterested.
The acting in this crime thriller is excellent, despite the lower budget. The tragedy, however, is very bleak. The brothers are clearly estranged from their father, especially Andy. This sets up the movie’s inevitable tragic ending.
To be truly effective, however, tragedy requires a main character with traits that are worth saving, despite his flaw. For instance, Hamlet is a likeable fellow, despite his problems. Thus, BEFORE THE DEVIL KNOWS YOU’RE DEAD offers no solid redemptive elements for viewers, despite a positive reference to Jesus Christ. It also contains excessive foul language, some very strong violence, and explicit sex and nudity.
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