Runner Runner (d. Brad Furman USA 2013)

Runner Runner (d. Brad Furman USA 2013)

Please read ‘On Reviews‘ for a guide to how I write film reviews.


This film appears to be a story inspired by the recent craze with online poker. However, its relationship with online poker is debatable. It has to be said, this was a flawed film. However, it’s hard to say why. The film was just missing something. An argument could be made for the little expansion it made to the trailer – have we seen the film if we’ve seen the trailer? There was definitely something missing. But it’s far from satisfactory to say that the film was merely missing something. What? What was it missing? So what was it? Where should we look?


Cinematography? Was the film shot badly? The film certainly included some interesting shots of the location and the skies. There wasn’t necessarily, anything especially bad with the cinematography. The special effects, though not hugely an important part of this film, wasn’t problematic at all. All in all, the film looked quite nice, nothing special but quite nice. So no faults here.


Well what about the performances? Justin Timberblake as Richie Furst and Ben Affleck as Ivan Block in the two leads. Well, if we disregard the common dislike for both of these faces, the performances was fitting of the roles. Again, nothing especially special, but nothing bad enough to ruin the film. The supporting cast had moments of boredom and moments of being more interesting. But generally speaking, the performances suited the parts. Each actor fulfilled his duty. We might be able to fault the leads for being nothing especially good, but they’re not entirely to blame.


Lastly, narrative and concept? The narrative seems to elaborate only slightly on things laid out in the trailer. So the film is definitely formulaic. The scenes themselves offer a poor script not allowing much empathy with the central characters. Their performances already standing as discussed earlier. Nothing especially important is taking you from one thing to the next. A cliché to the next. Despite this, the film wasn’t without entertainment, it’s just forgettable. By the end of the film one wonders if they even saw it. Each scene is readily ignored as they pay attention to them.


This film, like so many, doesn’t seem to advance anything. It lazily goes from one scene to the next creating minimal interest enough to get one from beginning to end before wondering – ‘why did I bother?’ I wouldn’t recommend this film, I wouldn’t be surprised if some may enjoy it but it certainly wont be memorable. It’s a frightful shame…


Further Reading

Official Site

Justin Timberlake’s Official Site

Interview with Justin Timberlake

Interview with Ben Affleck

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