Logan Lucky Movie Review
That was short-lived. Steven Soderbergh’s “retirement” from making movies ended with Logan Lucky, a redneck version of Ocean’s Eleven that has Channing Tatum, Adam Driver and Daniel Craig—as a bleached-blond convict with a nasally southern drawl—hatching a plan to rob a NASCAR race. Too bad Soderbergh didn’t return for something more exceptional.
Logan Lucky is a perfectly fine little crime caper, with well-defined characters and an elaborate plot that more or less mirrors the structure of Ocean’s. But given that the movie is about a band of seemingly redneck idiots trying to pull off a heist, it’s fair to expect something funnier and fun than the end product actually is.
Craig, in a supporting role, gives his most entertaining performance since becoming James Bond over a decade ago, but even with his completely out-of-character turn it’s hard not to see that Soderbergh and first-time screenwriter Rebecca Blunt left potential on the table. He’s funny, but not that funny, and that’s because the screenplay really fails to take advantage of any of the quirky characters put to screen. Tatum and Driver, as brothers, are both good, but neither are given much to do. Riley Keough seems to be in the movie just to show off sexy outfits.
With disappointing utilization of its characters, Logan Lucky’s saving grace is the heist, which is relatively complex and entertaining to watch. Though the big reveal is sort of shrugworthy—not enough goes wrong during the heist for it to even be necessary—Soderbergh deals out little twists and turns like the talented director he is.
Logan Lucky is a well-constructed film with interesting characters and a clever heist plot, but it needed to be funnier, quirkier and more entertaining to be anything more than a footnote in Soderbergh’s career.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.