Before the Devil Knows You're Dead

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead

Veteran, master filmmaker Sidney Lumet directs this melodrama-thriller, from a script by playwright-turned-screenwriter Kelly Masterson. The title comes from an Irish saying, "may you be in heaven half an hour before the Devil knows you're dead"… point being that few of our souls would come up spotless if Satan got the chance to check it out. This is the story of a divided New York family, and two brothers who attempt to pull off a perfect, victimless crime in order to save their monetary woes.

Features a spine tingling cast; Philip Seymour Hoffman is Andy, a frustrated, drug-abusing stockbroker who is unable to please his wife Gina – played by Marisa Tomei. Gina’s lover is Andy’s brother; the broke Hank – played by Ethan Hawk. Albert Finney and Rosemary Harris, the brother’s parents, run a jewelry store.

The crime, a heist from their parents own store, is Andy’s idea and he convinces the timid Hank it’s the only way out of their problems.

Best Ensemble Cast; Boston Society of Film Critics Awards 2007, Gotham Awards 2007
2008Rating: MA15+, Violence, Offensive Language, Drug Use & Sex Scenes117 minsUSA, UK
CrimeDramaThriller
Director:
Sidney Lumet ('12 Angry Men', 'Long Day's Journey Into Night', 'Serpico', 'Murder on the Orient Express', 'Dog Day Afternoon', 'Network', 'Q&A')
Writer:
Kelly Masterson
Cast:
Philip Seymour HoffmanEthan HawkeAlbert FinneyMarisa TomeiAmy RyanRosemary Harris

Streaming (4 Providers)

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead / Reviews

Flicks, Andrew Hedley

Flicks, Andrew Hedley

Despite its plain face, the modest Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead still manages to be tense, brutal and shocking. The pervasive depressing tone combines with the slow pace to create a fairly sombre night at the cinema, but it’s a quality night at the cinema nonetheless.

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Variety

Variety

The wrenching tale has something for anyone who likes their melodrama spiked with palpable tension and genuine suspense.

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Rolling Stone

Rolling Stone

A dynamite film that ranks with the year's best.

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New Zealand Herald

New Zealand Herald

Cleverly conceived thriller overplays its tricksy narrative but the acting is great.

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Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

Pungently atmospheric, brilliantly textured and featuring superb performances from every performer in parts big and small.

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Empire Magazine

Empire Magazine

Bleak, brutal and quite possibly brilliant, this is a triumphant return to form for Lumet and further proof that Hoffman is on an incredible winning streak.

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Christchurch Press

Christchurch Press

Lumet's slick, non-linear yet efficient storytelling draws you into the family drama masquerading as a crime thriller before you even realise you care what happens to these awful people. The stellar cast lifts this intense drama to fever pitch even as you take in the oddly incongruent tragicomic edge.

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BBC

BBC

Judged against Lumet's masterpieces this is middling and he engages in some tricksy editing and a overly complicated and finally irritating flashback/forward structure. But the great strength of Before The Devil... is in its finely calibrated pair of central performances.

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