Mark Wahlberg makes for a compelling everyman running the gauntlet in Peter Perg’s surprisingly restrained, rigorous, and tasteful document of the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history, the catastrophic BP oil spill of 2010.
A pleasant surprise emerging at the foot of a woefully disappointing summer, Antoine Fuqua’s (Olympus Has Fallen, The Equalizer) spirited re-do of the 1960 classic western (itself of course an Old West remake of Akira Kurosawa’s seminal Seven Samurai) benefits from superlative direction and a highly engaging cast of charming rogues.
A movie with a premise this outside-the-box is always sure to invite one recurring question from potential audiences – exactly how far do they take it? Well, director Nicolette Krebitz essentially gets to have her cake and eat it too by building up her lurid inter-species log-line with a deliberate first half before letting loose with an outrageous firecracker of a second. Likely to be one of the London Film Festival’s most divisive movies, Wild is a winner both darkly funny and psychologically pointed for those with the stomach to follow it to the end.
Writer-director John Michael McDonagh (The Guard, Calvary) returns with a distinctly lesser third film, albeit one that still wrings a solid number of laughs out of its familiar setup. Were it not for the sizzling Alexander Skarsgård-Michael Peña double act, though, this would be a far more fidgety sit.