CinemaCl🎃wn’s review published on Letterboxd:
Making excellent use of available resources and well aware of its limitations, Good Time makes every single minute of its runtime count and is intense from the very beginning. Featuring a no-nonsense plot and jam-packed with textured visuals, slick editing & synth score on top of Robert Pattinson’s smashing performance, it is a thrilling ride from start to finish.
Set in New York, the story follows a day in the life of a petty criminal who tries to rob a bank with his mentally challenged brother and although they appear to be successful at first, things soon take a turn for the worse when his brother is apprehended by the police. The rest of the plot finds him desperately looking for ways to free his brother out of the prison, all in one night.
Directed by the Safdie brothers, Good Time jumps to the good stuff straightaway and doesn’t concern itself with setting the premise or properly introducing its characters. Instead, it switches to top gear right off the bat, without worrying about the consequences, and then rides on that momentum for the remainder of its runtime. And the directors do a terrific job to keep things tight & gripping until the very end.
Dialogues or characterisation may not be its biggest strength but the narrative is engaging throughout and keeps the interest alive at all times. The shooting locations are smartly chosen and add their own features to the story. The smooth operation of camera & neon lighting give its images a distinct aesthetic. Pacing is swift, and Editing makes sure the tense aura is retained at all times while the synthesised score is definitely one of its finest aspects.
Coming to the acting department, Robert Pattinson brings a wholly different side to light here and chips in with a magnetic performance. Commanding the screen like never before, he carries the entire film by himself and articulates the desperation of his character with finesse. Ben Safdie also does really well as the mentally ill brother while Jennifer Jason Leigh, Buddy Duress & Barkhad Abdi provide good support in their given roles and play their part sensibly.
On an overall scale, Good Time is a stylishly directed, finely scripted, vividly photographed, aptly edited, stupendously scored & brilliantly performed caper that achieves what it set out to do, and is one of the coolest films to surface this year. Its visual design is just as impressive as Pattinson’s stellar rendition, and although the ending could’ve been cut short by a few minutes, the film as a whole delivers much more than what its title promises and is absolutely worth a shot. Do not miss it.