Mini Reviews: Limitless and The Lincoln Lawyer

Limitless

3.5/5
Limitless is an interesting and thought provoking film, once it was under way all I could think about was wanting to take what Eddie Morra (Bradley Cooper) was taking. He is our central character and we first meet him at a low point in his life. He is a struggling out of work writer, he has a publishing deal but has a severe case of writers block (I feel ya buddy) and his girlfriend Lindy (Abbie Cornish) has just dumped him. By chance he runs into his former brother-in-law/dealer Vernon (Johnny Whitworth), and they catch up. Before long Vernon gives Eddie a mysterious pill and being desperate he takes it. Upon taking the unknown pill, Eddie finds out it isn’t what he thinks. It basically allows him to use 100% of his higher functions, he can see things clearly and everything appears limitless. He becomes the man he has always wanted to be, and this of course comes with dire consequences.
It is difficult to know what to expect with a film like Limitless, the trailer was decent as were the cast (including Robert De Niro in a small role), turns out I really liked the film. It was a thriller with a hint of action and drama, the premise really hooked me in and as it all unraveled itself I became even more intrigued. I kept asking myself the ‘what ifs’ of this situation and how I might have handled things if I were in Eddie’s situation. Bradley Cooper is a solid actor, I haven’t ever really seen him deliver a bad performance (even in something as low as The Hangover II) and he seemed to be the perfect fit. He is in most of the scene’s in the film, if another actor who didn’t have his charms had the role it certainly would not have worked. Supporting cast were also rather solid, and it was nice to see De Niro up there for his limited screen time. The film suffered from some plot holes and not enough exposition with a few things, but I almost didn’t notice them as I was so interested in what was taking place. Neil Burger certainly has a way about him with his direction, and I liked it.
| Purchase on DVD | Purchase on Bluray |

The Lincoln Lawyer

3.5/5
Our story begins with the introduction of Mick Haller (Matthew McConaughey), a defense attorney who seems to conduct a lot of his business from his Lincoln. He’s a savvy and charismatic man, and getting him to defend you does not come cheap. He wants interesting cases, and when something catches his eye, he’s going for it. This brings him to Louis Roulet (Ryan Phillippe), a man accused of murder and wouldn’t you know it he claims he didn’t do it and was set up. The basic story is nothing new, but it gives us some interesting characters and a deeper story than what I have revealed. I wont say much more because it is better to experience the film on as little plot information as possible. If anything I would compare this to something like Primal Fear, where all is not what it seems and plot twists continue throughout the film. It intrigued me, I was hooked right from the get go. It left me guessing and unlike other courtroom based films I didn’t actually see where this was going (at least not with everything). I was on the edge of my seat and engrossed with the film, most of all with Haller himself.
I have always been a fan of McConaughey, he usually fares much better when he isn’t in a rom/com. I really liked him in this, he was likable and charismatic and he gave a lot to Haller. I actually cared what happened to him, and I found him to be an interesting character. I can’t recall the last time I had seen Ryan Phillippe in a recent film, and I had almost forgotten that he was a solid actor. He was great as Roulet and the back and forth at play between himself and McConaughey worked quite well. The film is littered with all sorts of actors in smaller roles including William H. Macy, Marisa Tomei, Josh Lucas, John Leguizamo, Michael Peña, Bob Gunton, Frances Fisher, Bryan Cranston, Trace Adkins and Michael Paré. They are all really solid and deliver the goods in the capacity that they are in. Brad Furman directed an entertaining drama/thriller and I can only hope it did the book some justice (I have not read it but I am interested now). Recommended Saturday afternoon viewing.
| Purchase on DVD | Purchase on Bluray |

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