STEVE MCQUEEN | USA | ENGLISH | 2018 | 128 MIN
Steve McQueen follows up his Academy Award-winning 12 YEARS A SLAVE with a gripping thriller about four women left with no options other than to pull off a daring multi-million dollar heist.
Viola Davis soars as Veronica, a Chicago union leader who has always turned a blind eye to her husband Rawlins’ less legitimate business arrangements. Among other things, Rawlins, played with a gravel-tinged lilt by Liam Neeson, runs a three-man crew of thieves, and they are about to pull off a major job. When that job goes fatally wrong, however, Veronica is forced to reckon with the legacy of crime closing in around her. Her only way out: recruit her fellow widows — Michelle Rodriguez, Cynthia Erivo and Elizabeth Debicki — to finish what the men started and pull off an audacious heist on their own terms. Though based on a 30-year-old British crime drama, WIDOWS is marvelous, meaningful entertainment for our current #MeToo moment. McQueen and co-screenwriter Gillian Flynn, author of GONE GIRL and SHARP OBJECTS, endow the classic planning-a-heist-film set-up with real world stakes and emotional resonance. As the women put all the elements of the robbery into place, McQueen takes the time to explore their heartache, determination and sisterhood. While the men of the film — Neeson, along with Robert Duvall, Colin Farrell, Brian Tyree Henry and Daniel Kaluuya — jockey for position through political posturing and braggadocio, the women solemnly take stock of the dire situation (that the men have left them in, needless to say) and quietly set about taking care of business. A powerful statement on the strength of women that also happens to be an explosive, livewire thriller directed with wit and style, WIDOWS is one of the year’s must-sees.
CAST: Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki, Cynthia Erivo
All sales are final. Admission is not guaranteed after scheduled start time.
CLICK HERE to return to the 27th Philadelphia Film Festival schedule.