Runner Runner (2013) Review

Richie is trying to pay himself through college and it all goes wrong when he is cheated out of all his money on an online poker game by Ivan Block.

We get a little bit on Richie’s background that he failed on Wall Street and went back to college to do his masters but was making money by getting students (and teachers) to sign up online to a gambling website. Something which was banned on campus. When he gets a warning about this he decides he must go all in to try to win more money. He thinks he has the game cracked but notices something strange about the “players” he is up against. These leads him to not only losing all is money but heading to Costa Rica to confront Ivan Block.

The trailers make this film look very stilish and slick, which I guess for very brief moments it is just that. But we don’t get the cool film we expect, instead its rather sloppy and tries to be way to clever for itself. It tries to keep you guessing what is going to happen next and how it is all going to unravel. I doubt you will really be that bothered by the end as I certainly didn’t really care about how it was going to end and what happened to Richie he was not a likeable character at all.

I have to mention John Heard and how badly he has aged! I’ve thought that about a few films he’s been in over the past few years, like at first you don’t totally recognise him. Then realise who he is! I guess his role as Harry, Richie’s father was to show that he actually wasn’t too far away from the gambler he never wanted to be. Ben Affleck took Block to a quite creepy level but maybe not extreme enough to have a bigger impact in this film.

It was all about the gamble and who was willing to put the most in, even with the FBI around who was actually helping Agent Shavers and who’s side would he be on at the end? I guess that’s the main focus of the film. The “love” interest scenes weren’t exactly the best either and that whole part could have really been missed out. So overall the film is a bit of a mess really, you won’t miss much if you decide against seeing this one.

3 thoughts on “Runner Runner (2013) Review

  1. As mentioned in a previous review, this film is a bit too familiar to be an exciting watch. Having said that, the performances, particularly Affleck, were of good quality and each leading actor portrayed their characters well. This is not an intelligent nor original film, but the location and storyline do add a sense of refreshment to the formulaic ‘good guy trumps’ action/thriller plot. I enjoyed the film. I wasn’t on the edge of my seat, nor was I glued to the screen, but the fact that we had the whole screening room to ourselves meant that we could quip freely about what was going on, and this naturally added to my enjoyment. There were a few unintentionally funny moments, mostly near the end, but that may be more of a personal observation and many viewers may have a different view on that. Affleck was convincing and strong as the shady, ruthless business tycoon and delivered his lines with appealing finesse. Timberlake was a good choice for the role as an initially thin-skinned Prinston student, and his development as a character was well-timed throughout. Overall, I enjoyed the film, but it’s not one I would rave about to friends. ‘Prisoners’ was showing at the same time and while I haven’t seen it yet, I can say with a relative degree of certainty that it would be a more compelling and rewarding watch.

    More about the movie you can also find it here
    http://movieinfodb.com/en/movie/146238/Runner+Runner-2013

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