So what if the name sucks, Ben Affleck directorial, ‘The Town’, is a stand-out piece of film making complimented by solid performances all round.

While the story will not blow your mind, and at points seems predictable, the characters feel real and wrapped up in a reality that is brought to life through thorough character building and cinematography. The narrative does put a nice spin of the classic heist plotline with the hostage, Claire (played by Rebecca Hall), being the love interest, although you can’t help but think the victim/criminal relationship could have been an unexpected reveal had the narrative been written differently. This dramatic irony of knowing anti-hero, Doug MacRay (one of Ben Affleck’s best performances in a long while)isn’t all he says is well sculpted to create copious amounts of tension that keep the viewer glued to the screen over the 2 hour+ running time.¬†Jeremy Renner’s performance turns speculation into concrete fact that he is, in fact, a serious badass and it heavily contributes to the gritty atmosphere and level of despair and criminality that seems to follow those residing in setting, Charlestown.

With a harsh, well crafted script and great direction ‘The Town’ shines above many of the recent films to encompass the crime/heist genre. Affleck should be proud of his efforts, both on screen and off, as the result is a film that surpasses previous directorial outing, the heavily underrated ‘Gone Baby Gone’.

8 1/2 out of 10¬†