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home : columnists and contributors : columnists and contributors April 30, 2016

10/9/2013 12:01:00 AM
Movie Review: Runner Runner
Cynthia Morse Zumbaugh

I caught a trailer for this movie a few weeks ago and I was genuinely looking forward to seeing it; it looked like an intelligent drama/thriller. The idea was there, but the execution failed.

Richie Furst (Justin Timberlake) didn't quite cut it in the real financial world, so he goes back to school at Princeton. He pays his way by promoting an on-line gambling site and, of course, by gambling. When he loses everything he has, he travels to Costa Rica to take on the man who runs the site because he knows that he must have been cheated. (Lost everything, but still money for a last minute flight, this is where they started to lose me.) He gets there and confronts the big guy (Ben Affleck) who is so impressed by this that he offers him a job and they become best buds. And of course, Ivan Block (Affleck) has an ex/current girlfriend that falls for Furst. Enter an FBI agent who proceeds to try to force Furst into turning on his new friend/mentor.

I read some comments somewhere likening this movie to Wall Street and that really nailed it. Substitute Block for Gecko, Furst for Bud and Gemma Arterton's Rebecca for Daryl Hannah's Darien and you pretty much have the same movie, with much prettier scenery this time around. Runner Runner was filmed in Puerto Rico and there are some amazing visuals.

There really were no surprises, the movie moved slowly and the performances were not great. This movie is rated "R" for some language, sexual situations and a couple scary moments, but children would probably get bored faster than I did (although that is up for debate.) All in all, quite a disappointment.

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