A Most Violent Year★★★★ Premiere 10.00pm-12 midnight BBC2
Jeffrey McDonald Chandor – who trades as JC – can do no wrong. As writer/director, he’s made three films since 2011, all different, all exceptional: Wall Street chamber piece Margin Call, one-man maritime survival drama All Is Lost and, in 2014, this. A Most Violent Year, set in 1981 when New York reported more robberies and murders than in any other year, is an old-fashioned crime family saga, in which Oscar Isaac’s principled heating-oil company is threatened by hijackers but he refuses to fight back, despite wife Jessica Chastain’s entreaties. Intimidation, threats, the unwanted attention of David Oyelowo’s Assistant DA, all conspire to place Isaac in the orbit of the Mafia. Industry, corruption and slush, it’s like a grown-up, moody drama made in the glory days of the 1970s, with Isaac in the Al Pacino role and Chastain as Mia Farrow.
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