With Any Luck, You’ll Skip ‘Logan Lucky’

Logan_LuckyYou know those movies you’re sure are fine but you just don’t care for them regardless? That’s this.

“Logan Lucky” is director Steven Soderbergh’s return to cinema following a four-year “retirement.” It follows three West Virginia siblings (Channing Tatum, Adam Driver and Riley Keough) who partner with a career criminal (Daniel Craig) in order to steal money from the Charlotte Motor Speedway.

This is one of those films that despite the many A-list names on the poster (including Seth MacFarlane, Katie Holmes, Hilary Swank, Katherine Waterston and Sebastian Stan), most of them are just glorified cameos (like “Hail, Caesar!”). So if you were coming to this hoping for an “Ocean’s 11”-type romp full of big name stars, temper your expectations, because all this really is Soderbergh and buddy Channing Tatum hanging out with their friends and making a movie that never really flows or gives us any reason to justify its existence.

To the film’s credit, it wastes almost no time before Tatum and Driver begin planning their heist of the racecar track, however not only do we not know much about their characters besides Tatum was recently fired and Driver lost his arm in the war, but we aren’t given any reason for why they would want to commit this crime. Yes, Tatum is now unemployed but they go out of their way to establish him as a man of simple needs (he doesn’t pay his cellphone bill because he only uses the phone to take pictures of his daughter). And as for Driver (whom I normally adore), he says he already went to jail once and his life of crime is over, but in the next scene seems content joining along.

Almost all the other names in billing are here for just a scene or two and more often than not their appearances are off-putting. Seth MacFarlane–in a very distracting wig and porn stache–is a millionaire founder of an energy drink (or something) and his three scenes seem like maybe they’d be funny if I wasn’t so distracted by the Stewie Griffin voice. Hillary Swank is the government agent who investigates the robbery and she shows up so late in the film my friend leaned over to me and said “I guess this is what two Oscars gets you.” And Katherine Waterston pops up as a traveling nurse for one scene and then isn’t seen again until randomly at the very end of the film.

And speaking of the end of the film (on top of it refusing to end and the final 20 minutes being criminally long), it feels the need to recap everything we had just watched the previous 90 minutes. It attempts to show the heist from a different perspective but it doesn’t really work since the endgame is the same for all parties involved and some things remain unanswered regardless.

There are a few moments of comedy and interesting heist tricks sprinkled in here, but they’re so far, few and in between that it is in no way worth buying a ticket to this film.

“Logan Lucky” was made by talented people who clearly had a good time filming it, but is just never really comes to fruition. I was bored for a large chunk of the runtime and the payoff is nowhere near sweet enough to justify the preceding hour and a half. There are better heist films, ensemble comedies and Steven Soderbergh joints out there, so while I’m sure this was a labor of love by the cast and crew, it is just labor for the rest of us.

Critics Rating: 4/10

Fingerprint Releasing/Bleeker Street

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