Good Time (film)
|Directed by||Josh Safdie|
|Cinematography||Sean Price Williams|
|Music by||Oneohtrix Point Never|
|Box office||$3.2 million|
Good Time is a 2017 American crime thriller film directed by Josh and Benny Safdie and written by Josh Safdie and Ronald Bronstein. It stars Robert Pattinson as a robber who tries to free his mentally disabled brother, played by Benny Safdie, all while eluding his own capture. Barkhad Abdi, Jennifer Jason Leigh, and Buddy Duress co-star. The original soundtrack was by electronic musician Oneohtrix Point Never. The film was selected to compete for the Palme d'Or in the 2017 Cannes Film Festival's main competition section. The film received critical acclaim for Pattinson's performance, the direction, story, and soundtrack.
Nick Nikas sits uncomfortably in a court-ordered therapy session where he talks about the time he had a violent incident with his grandmother. He is mentally handicapped enough to not fully grasp anger management or the social repercussions of his actions. Nick's brother Connie bursts in and, to the displeasure of the therapist, forces Nick out of the room.
The brothers rob a New York City bank for $65,000. While fleeing in a taxi, a dye pack explodes in a money bag, causing the driver to crash. Connie and Nick flee on foot, washing the dye from their clothes in a fast-food restaurant restroom. Stopped by police, Nick panics and runs but is arrested and sent to Rikers Island while Connie escapes.
Connie attempts to secure a bail bond, but needs $10,000 more to get Nick out of jail. Too much of the robbery money is ruined by the dye to make his bail, so Connie needs another $10,000 as quickly as possible to get his brother out. He convinces his girlfriend, Corey, to pay with her mother's credit cards, but her mother cancels them. Connie learns that Nick has been hospitalized after a fight with an inmate. Connie breaks him out of the hospital, unconscious and bandaged, and convinces a woman to let them stay in her house with her 16-year-old granddaughter Crystal. While they watch TV, the news shows photos of Connie's face; to distract Crystal, he kisses her. Hearing screams from the other room, Connie realizes the man he broke out of the hospital is not Nick but a man released on parole, Ray.
The three drive to the Adventureland amusement park, where Ray stowed a bottle of LSD solution worth several thousand dollars and a bag of stolen money before he ran from police and injured himself. Searching for the money, Connie and Ray uncover the bottle of LSD and are discovered by a security guard; Connie beats him unconscious. As police arrive, Connie steals the man's uniform and Ray pours LSD down the man's throat to make him incoherent. Connie convinces the police that the guard was the intruder and destroys a hard drive containing security footage. Connie denies knowing Crystal as she is arrested while waiting outside.
Ray and Connie break into the guard's high-rise apartment. The guard has a pitbull that Connie lets smell the guard's jacket to get in. Ray begins drinking and Connie tells him he is a leech on society, leading to a heated argument. At Connie's insistence, Ray calls his criminal friend Caliph to buy back the LSD so they can get the bail money. When Caliph arrives, Connie demands $15,000; Caliph agrees, but tells Ray that he is really going to retrieve a firearm and come back to kill Connie. After Caliph leaves, Connie senses danger and leaves with the acid. As he made it to the hallway, Ray attacks him in order to prevent him from leaving, but the dog attacks Ray, giving Connie the opportunity to flee with the drugs. Ray goes back in the room and calls Caliph, but when he looks over the balcony, he sees Connie get caught by police. Ray attempts to escape from a window, but falls to his death. Meanwhile, Connie is put in the back of a police car and thinks about everything that has transpired. The film ends with Nick in a therapy class, beginning to participate in a group activity, with his therapist implying that Connie has confessed and taken responsibility for his role in the bank robbery, promising that he will have a "good time".
- Robert Pattinson as Constantine "Connie" Nikas, a criminal, Nick's older brother and Corey's boyfriend.
- Benny Safdie as Nikolas "Nick" Nikas, Connie's younger, developmentally disabled brother.
- Buddy Duress as Ray, a criminal recently released on parole.
- Taliah Lennice Webster as Crystal, a teenage girl who helps Connie.
- Jennifer Jason Leigh as Corey Ellman, Connie's girlfriend.
- Barkhad Abdi as Dash, a security guard.
- Necro as Caliph, a criminal friend of Ray.
- Peter Verby as Peter, Nick's psychiatrist.
- Saida Mansoor as Agapia Nikas.
- Gladys Mathon as Annie.
- Rose Gregorio as Loren Ellman.
- Eric Paykert as Eric the Bail Bondsman.
- Craig muMs Grant as Denny
On July 9, 2015, it was announced that Ben and Josh Safdie would direct a caper film called Good Time, and that Pattinson was attached to star. Elara Pictures' Sebastian Bear-McClard and Oscar Boyson produced the film, which Pattinson described as a "really hardcore kind of Queens, New York, mentally damaged psychopath, bank robbery movie."
Oneohtrix Point Never provided the film's score, which won the Soundtrack Award at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. His work for the film included a collaboration with singer Iggy Pop, "The Pure and the Damned". The score was released as Oneohtrix Point Never's eighth studio album in August 2017. The Safdie brothers also directed a music video for "The Pure and the Damned", featuring Robert Pattinson and Benny Safdie reprising their roles as Connie and Nick respectively, as well as a CGI stand-in for Iggy Pop.
In October 2016, A24 acquired distribution rights to the film. It was selected to compete for the Palme d'Or in the main competition section at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. It began a limited U.S. release on August 11, 2017, and expanded widely two weeks later.
On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has an approval rating of 92%, based on 238 reviews, with an average rating of 7.6/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "A visual treat filled out by consistently stellar work from Robert Pattinson, Good Time is a singularly distinctive crime drama offering far more than the usual genre thrills." On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 80 out of 100, based on 41 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".
Richard Brody of The New Yorker gave the film a glowing review, calling it "an instant crime classic in the age of Trump", and awarding specific praise to Pattinson's performance as well as the Safdies' direction and Sean Price Williams' cinematography. David Rooney of The Hollywood Reporter gave the film a positive review, praising Pattinson's performance, and wrote: "Led by Robert Pattinson giving arguably his most commanding performance to date as a desperate bank robber cut from the same cloth as Al Pacino's Sonny Wortzik in Dog Day Afternoon, this is a richly textured genre piece that packs a visceral charge in its restless widescreen visuals and adrenalizing music, which recalls the great mood-shaping movie scores of Tangerine Dream."
Guy Lodge of Variety also gave the film a positive review, and said that "Robert Pattinson hits a career high in Benny and Josh Safdie's nervy, vivid heist thriller, which merges messy humanity with tight genre mechanics." The Economist praised Pattinson's performance, saying it "establishes him as a capable character actor". Emily Yoshida of Vulture said "For all its throttling thrills, Good Time is a film about a destructive love—and loving someone despite not having the right kind of love to give them. Ignore the deceptively convivial title: This is the kind of thrill that sticks."
Conversely, Rex Reed of Observer criticized the film, calling it "just under two hours of pointless toxicity," populated by brainless characters, filled with ludicrous writing, and laced with mostly over the top acting, "with characters so contrived that the movie defies even the most basic logic. ... At best," Reed wrote, "it's a frenetic, disjointed and totally surreal look at people in crisis, seen through the eyes of other people in crisis. It all takes place in one night, but it seems to last days." Likewise, A. O. Scott of The New York Times said: "Sometimes it flaunts its clichés—Nick's disability, and Benny Safdie's slack-jawed portrayal of it, is a big one—and other times it cloaks them in rough visual textures and jumpy, bumpy camera movements, so that a rickety genre thrill ride feels like something daring and new. It isn't. It's stale, empty and cold."
|Award||Date of ceremony||Category||Recipient(s) and nominee(s)||Result||Ref.|
|Cannes Film Festival||May 17–28, 2017||Palme d'Or||Safdie brothers||Nominated|||
|Cannes Soundtrack Award||Oneohtrix Point Never||Won|||
|Hollywood Music in Media Awards||November 16, 2017||Original Score — Feature Film||Won|||
|Soundtrack Album||Good Time||Nominated|
|Gotham Independent Film Awards||November 27, 2017||Best Feature||Good Time||Nominated|||
|Best Actor||Robert Pattinson||Nominated|
|Detroit Film Critics Society||December 8, 2017||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Best Use of Music||Oneohtrix Point Never||Nominated|
|Boston Online Film Critics Association||December 9, 2017||Ten Best Films of the year||Good Time||10th Place|||
|Online Film Critics Society||December 12, 2017||Best Editing||Ronald Bronstein and Benny Safdie||Nominated|||
|Best Actor||Robert Pattinson||Nominated|
|San Diego Film Critics Society||December 12, 2017||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Dublin Film Critics' Circle||December 13, 2017||Best Actor||3rd Place|||
|Seattle Film Critics Society||December 18, 2017||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Indiewire Critics' Poll||December 19, 2017||Best Actor||3rd Place|||
|Florida Film Critics Circle||December 23, 2017||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|North Texas Film Critics Association||December 20, 2017||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Houston Film Critics Society||January 6, 2018||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Austin Film Critics Association||January 8, 2018||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Evening Standard British Film Awards||February 8, 2018||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Satellite Awards||February 10, 2018||Best Actor||Nominated|||
|Independent Spirit Awards||March 3, 2018||Best Male Lead||Nominated|||
|Best Director||Safdie Brothers||Nominated|
|Best Supporting Male||Benny Safdie||Nominated|
|Best Supporting Female||Taliah Lennice Webster||Nominated|
|Best Editing||Ronald Bronstein and Benny Safdie||Nominated|
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- "Contrived and Disjointed, 'Good Time' Drags". The New York Observer. August 11, 2017.
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