DVD Review: The Lookout

thelookout posterbig DVD Review: The Lookout

The Lookout is a nifty indie film with great performances from its cast and some cool visuals and entertaining storytelling.  It manages to evoke both Memento and Fargo, but it feels fresh and different enough to stand out on its own thanks to some great acting, a very good script, and excellent direction.  The standout is Joseph Gordon Levitt, who is turning out to be the best young actor in Hollywood.

Levitt plays a hockey player/town golden boy named Chris Pratt who is left brain-damaged late one night after a horrific car accident.  He has only one real friend, a blind man named Lewis (played with great empathy and intelligence by Jeff Daniels).  Lewis watches over Chris but can’t protect him from a dangerous smoothie named Gary Spargo (a terrific British actor named Matthew Goode) and his gang of thugs, who use a woman and Chris’s poor self-esteem to rope him into a dangerous situation where there may be no escape.  Chris has a shaky relationship with his emotionally distant and wealthy father and Gary uses all the tools in his arsenal to make Chris feel a part of his dangerous family.

The Lookout was written and directed with great style by Scott Frank and only a few plot-holes and untidy resolutions that prevent the film from being truly great.  As it is, it’s pretty damn good, and Levitt continues his hot streak after doing excellent work in Brick and particularly in Gregg Araki’s excellent Mysterious Skin.  He never overplays Chris’s brain damage like many “established” actors would but instead digs deep to make Chris a lost and likable soul.  The Lookout features good supporting turns (Daniels and Goode stand out) and terrific atmosphere, it’s more a character study of damaged people than it is a crime thriller, and I mean that as a compliment.

Film Grade:  B+

pixel DVD Review: The Lookout

More fun articles: