Have you ever seen or heard of the movie Good Time?
Chances are this is the first you’ve heard of Good Time which is really a shame, because Good Time is one of the best films of 2017.
Directed by brothers Benny Safdie and Josh Safdie, Good Time follows Connie Nikas (Robert Pattinson) who, after a bank robbery goes south, tries to break his mentally-handicapped brother, Nick Nikas (Benny Safdie), out of prison. The entire film takes place over one night and shows Connie’s struggle to fix the situation he got himself and everyone around him into.
Robert Pattinson carries this movie as the character Connie Nikas, showing a wide range of emotions and thoughts through his performance. If you were worried that Pattinson’s gloomy and boring performance of Edward from the Twilight series would carry over to his future performances in any way you’ll be happy to know that Pattinson completely metamorphosed for this role. In fact he is completely unrecognizable from his previous roles with him now sporting a beard and a crazed head of hair. It’s difficult to write about Pattinson’s performance purely because of how deep and complex it is. In a single scene he will show emotions of rage, joy, sorrow, confusion, and understanding through very nuanced subtleties in his character. It truly is one of the best performances of 2017 and would have easily seen an Oscar nomination, and maybe a win, if this movie were more well known.
Speaking at length about Pattinson’s character and not mentioning any others would be doing a disservice to the film. Every performance in this movie is flawless. Every actor brings their character a realistic feeling that helps to make every single character memorable. No performance best describes this than Nick Nikas, played by the the director of the movie Benny Safdie. Although he is not featured in much of the movie, Benny gives a hard-hitting and sympathetic performance that steals the show and has you rooting for him to escape his situation the whole runtime.
Beyond characters and performances, the thing that makes Good Time a masterpiece in some people eyes is how perfectly the movie portrays New York City. In many movies, the setting can be a character in itself and this definitely proves true in Good Time. The film’s portrayal of New York City is brutal and realistic which translates to and enhances every character within it.
Although this movie does a lot of things near flawlessly, it does have some glaring problems that stops it from being a masterpiece for me. Firstly, around the middle point of the movie there is a plot twist that left me feeling more confused than surprised. Second, throughout the movie there are a few plot holes I noticed that may not bother other movie goers, but did take me out of the movie a little. None of the negatives I listed diminish the positives for me and Good Time definitely ends up being a net positive.
Good Time is more than a good time, it is one of the best cinematic experiences of 2017 and you’re doing yourself a disservice not taking two hours out to watch it. If you do want to check out Good Time it is available for free on Amazon with Prime membership and can be purchased on either DVD or Bluray.
+ Gripping plot, + Great, memorable characters, + Flawless performances, + New York City feels alive, - Slightly confusing twist, - Minor plot holes