When a botched heist kills Chicago gang boss Rawlins (Liam Neeson) and his crew, his devastated wife Veronica (Viola Davis) is left to pick up the pieces in Steve McQueen’s taut, gripping crime thriller. Blackmailed by a rival criminal into paying off her late husband’s debts, Veronica recruits the widows of the slain crew in a bid to pull off a dangerous robbery.
Based on Lynda La Plante’s 1983 TV miniseries, and co-written by Gone Girl author Gillian Flynn, the teasingly complex plot expands to involve corrupt politician Tom Mulligan (Colin Farrell) as he campaigns to win the vote of disadvantaged south side Chicago districts.
Working within genre parameters, McQueen layers the film with topical issues of racism and police brutality.
(Notes by David O’Mahony.)
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