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Drama - Crime

Runner Runner (2013)

Photo by Scott Garfield for Twentieth Century Fox.

Duration1h 28m
RatingsUK: 15, USA: R, Spain: 16,
Source of storyAn original screenplay
DirectorBrad Furman
Writers/ScriptBrian Koppelman, David Levien
StarringJustin Timberlake, Ben Affleck, Gemma Arterton, Anthony Mackie, John Heard, 
RatingsIMDb: 5.6 by 60,295 people, Rotten Tomatoes: 8% by 120 reviewers.

Elevator Pitch: In the world of on line gambling a major player is Ivan Block, who also runs a sort of mini Las Vegas in Costa Rica. Meanwhile Richie Furstan extremely clever client of the on line site finds that his money has been hijacked in a scam. He goes to Costa Rica and with some difficulty gets to Block, who immediately employs him as his assistant. Richie forms a relationship with Rebecca, Block’s current or possibly former girlfriend and is approached by an FBI man, who has no jurisdiction in the country. Richie is also beaten up by employees of the state licencing minister, effectively on behalf of Block, and realises that if he is to survive he has to find a means of protecting himself.

Content: There is no nudity or sex apart from a bit of flickering video, but at  times girls desport themselves in bikinis. Richie is thrown out of university and travels to Block’s city, where they meet on a very large luxurious sailing yacht. He gets to work in the casino, where card games and dice are played and he looks after things, but can be seen to be hiding large quantities of cash away for later use. Richie’s father is also a gambler and Block buys his debts and moves him to the country as a hostage to ensure Richie’s good behaviour. People are beaten up and crocodiles feature.

A View: So let’s be realistic. People say that Ben Affleck is usually out acted by the furniture, and despite the fact that Justin Timberlake is a very successful singer he seems to have only one expression “meh”. Gemma Arterton said in a later interview that she had considered giving up acting in movies after appearing in this film. Also central to the plot is Richie’s ability to steal vast sums of money from Block’s casino, something we movie watchers would think is impossible. So this is not a successful heist movie, it is not a romantic movie and it is certainly not a comedy. It is not a watch even for nothing.

Additional Info: Puerto Rico stood in for Costa Rica. 

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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