‘St. Vincent’ Review

By Aidan Hall

We students here at The Reel Deal love Bill Murray. He can do no wrong in our eyes, and I dare say he is the patron saint of our fine organization. So when I was given the heavy burden of critiquing of St. Vincent, I was scared. I was afraid that this film might be the one that broke the streak of excellent films and that this would be my cross to bear as I delivered the verdict that this movie was terrible.  Thank the patron saint, my fears never became a reality.

          St.Vincent is an excellent movie. That’s it. We can all go home. What? Is that not good enough for you; the opinion of one guy, you’ve probably never met? Well okay dear reader, I’ll give you the why. Bill Murray brings one of his best performances to this film, and he’s not alone. Melissa McCarthy, Chris O’Dowd, Naomi Watts, and newcomer Jaeden Lieberher all bring great performances and give us a funny, yet powerful, film. While Naomi Watts’ Russian accent is very strained, her character is believable. Jaeden plays the young Oliver who Vincent takes under his wing and looks after. O’Dowd is never on screen long enough to overstay his welcome, and when he is on camera he is incredibly funny. You can tell that they had fun making this film. The chemistry between the actors is visible and while the story is overused, this film never feels dry.

St.Vincent tells the story of a grumpy old man that takes in his new neighbor’s son and a pregnant stripper for extra money. But while this alcoholic gambler is an all around cranky man, the audience feels for Vince as the movie progresses. the audience sees why he does what he does and what he’s gone through. It usually takes a lot for me to cry, but this festival has given me two films that have made me ball like a baby, one being Uzumasa Limelight, and the other being St.Vincent. You can sit through the film and see exactly where it’s going, and the ending still hits you. The only performance that was lackluster was Terrance Howard’s. His was the only element that subtracted from the film. The other actors work so well together onscreen that audience genuinely believes in what this film is. The story is predictible, but set that aside and you actually begin to expect a big change in the plot; something different, something you didn’t see coming. And while the film does have unique elements to the plot, when it gives you that same old ending you’ve seen a hundred times before, it feels right. This film is satisfying from start to finish and not once do you feel like it’s too much. If this doesn’t win Bill Murray an award, then there’s no justice in this world.

Verdict: Incredible
Positives: Great acting and performances even by newcomer, Jaeden Lieberher, very well played.
Negatives: Naomi Watts’ Russian prostitute, predictable story elements.