Wednesday, January 22 2014, 10:14 AM MST
Sundance 2014: God's Pocket
3 out of 5 Stars
Director: John Slattery
Starring: Philip Seymour Hoffman, Richard Jenkins, Christina Hendricks, John Turturro
Category: U.S. Dramatic
Recommended to: Those looking for a film with a great cast that is let down by its unfocused script and uneven direction.
Synopsis: When Mickey Scarpato’s (Philip Seymour Hoffman) stepson is killed in a construction accident his wife, believing there’s a cover up, demands that he uncover the truth.
Review: God’s Pocket, a little nowhere town, feels like the Wild West where laws
are made by the town's sense of morality rather than a traditional
model of what is right or wrong. On that level the film works quite well as it establishes an atmosphere where anything could and probably has happened. The problem is God’s Pocket is undermined by its incredibly uneven tone. It might want to be a dark comedy, but it has a hard time not becoming a straight drama with odd moments of bleak humor. The performances are good; particularly from Philip Seymour Hoffman who's character offers him the most to work with. Had the script and direction been stronger God's Pocket would have been more satisfying.
-Ryan Michael Painter