I think literally everyone was hyped for what Steve McQueen was going to do next. I don’t love 12 Years a Slave like everyone does but I think his previous effort Shame is such a fine film about a man plagued with a sex addiction. Widows looked to enlist a really terrific ensemble cast and bring the action and grit to a heist film. After watching it, I can say that it is a well cast and well acted slow burn. It skims on the action at times and isn’t perfect but McQueen and the writing of Gilian Flynn were able to bring a perfectly enjoyable film.
The film focuses on Veronica Rawlings, the wife of a renowned thief, who recently passes on a heist gone wrong. She and other widows of members of the same heist are forced to band together to retrieve money from a big job. The reason they need to do this is because they are being forced by a politician who is also a crime lord, as the original money that burned up in the aforementioned heist belonged to him. Having no experience herself, Rawlings and her crew must find ways to pull off the steal against all odds. The film is stacked with names such as Viola Davis, Elizabeth Debicki, Michelle Rodriguez, Liam Neeson, Collin Farrell and Robert DuVall to name a few.
The film isn’t as action packed as I thought it would be but its more of a slow burn build to the job the leading ladies must act out. The film is filled with character development, and intersecting plot lines that show how the lives of these wives intersect with the corruption of the city and a connected race in local politics. It really felt like a longer episode of The Wire. The film is well acted on all fronts. Davis is typically great but Daniel Kaluuya stepping into a despicable villainous role was also great to see. Elizabeth Debicki was a stand out as well, as she should be.
McQueen is a master behind the camera as can be seen through the editing, cinematography, and relatively solid story. I say that because the film doesn’t adequately wrap up the intersecting plot lines as I would have hoped. Just had a feeling that some resolutions were not adequately touched upon, which brings down the rating slightly for me. Otherwise, the film is still a great showing and a welcome addition to McQueen’s catalog of work.