The 11 Must-See Movies of December

11 of 12

Image courtesy of Warner Bros.

Live By Night (December 25th)

During the Prohibition era, Joe Coughlin (Ben Affleck) finds himself enmeshed in the world of shady individuals that leads to corruption and murder.

I’m a fan of author Dennis Lehane. I read Gone, Baby Gone and I’ve been hooked every since. (Clint Eastwood’s adaptation of Mystic River is the best Lehane translation out there.) However, his latest works are lending themselves a bit too easily to film. Live By Night is part of a new series Lehane’s been working on and as a novel it’s perfectly fine. What looks to save the book from obscurity is Ben Affleck, who made his directorial debut adapting the aforementioned Gone, Baby Gone in 2007. So it’s understandable why he’d want to go back to the author who started him on his career.

Since then Affleck’s risen to the top as a director, even nabbing an Oscar for Best Picture for Argo. Live By Night also allows the director to go back to the world of gangsters and gun molls, which has a mixed rate of returns – for every Road to Perdition there’s a Gangster Squad. The cast includes Zoe Saldana, Elle Fanning and Sienna Miller, solid actresses all, but critical consensus on this has been muted. In a similar move to Silence, there were assumptions that this wouldn’t be released till next year. Either way Affleck wants another shot at Oscar gold, and a period piece could do it. As a Lehane fangirl I’m morally obligated to give this a view.

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