Out of the Furnace is a power packed crime/drama with a cast that delivers on all aspects. Russell (Christian Bale) and his younger brother Rodney (Casey Affleck) reside in a deprived region called The Rust Belt. Both have had dreams of escaping to a new area to improve their lives and start over. This dream is shattered when Russell lands in prison because of some insane alteration in his life. This causes his brother Rodney to become affiliated with one of the most ruthless crime rings in the northeast region. Being part of this ring basically causes Rodney everything, with no good outcomes. After Russell is released he is faced with a predicament; to either value his freedom and avenge his brother seeking justice through all means necessary.
Russell is a straight edge guy. One would not think he would be in prison. He basically just has a string of bad luck. He is in a great place in his life with his girlfriend (Zoey Saldana), so at least he has that going for him! His brother Rodney on the other hand suffers from PTSD following his many tours to Afghanistan. He gets in thick with a man named John Petty, whom has Rod in staged fights in order to cover his (Rob’s) gambling problem. While questioning his brother Rob’s source of income, the three come in contact with a man by the name of Harlan (Woody Harelson), who is a dangerous man.
Whilst in prison everything falls apart in Russell’s world. His father passes away, after being terminally ill and his girlfriend, Lena, ends up marrying a police officer (Forest Whitaker). The only thing keeping him straight and in a somewhat lesser depressed state is keeping in touch with his brother. This culmination of stuff takes Russell on a brutal and bloody thrill ride for the viewer.
The video that’s presented is a gorgeous 1080p. Being that this is a dark and ominous film, a lot of the scenes are shot in areas that fail to produce light. These scenes, as I read, were not artificially brightened, giving it that pure darkness. Other scenes with light present stand out with bright and clear colors. Overall the video presentation is very well done to set the tone of the entire movie. The audio as well as the video is also very stunning. The DTS-HD 5.1 used makes very good use of the surrounding channels giving you a feeling of reality. The dialogue is clear and never overpowering as well as the sound effects.
The special features give you a little background about the story as well as some commentaries. Its nothing different than the ordinary special features. As you can tell I am not a huge special features fan, but one might enjoy a few interviews and such.
Inspiration: The movies stars talking about films that have influenced them
Scott Cooper: Gives you a look at the co-writer/director
Crafting the Fight Scenes: Shows you how these scenes were shot and choreographed
The Music of Out of the Furnace: has Scott talking about how he writes whilst listening to music, and how the song “Release” by Pearl Jam related to the film.
Theatrical Trailer: The trailer
I enjoyed watching this flick to an extent. The premise is very dark and brutal, and brought to life by an amazing ensemble. It may not have done too well in the box office, but that should not sway you away from viewing it. If you have a weak stomach, you may want to avoid, but if you are looking for a decent crime/thriller, definitely give it a whirl!