Mob Land 2023 720p WEB-DL x264

movieRAugust 26, 2023
A sheriff tries to keep the peace when a desperate family man violently robs a pill mill with his brother-in-law, alerting an enforcer for the New Orleans mafia.
IMDb Rating
1h 51min
Top Review

I really wanted to like this movie, but it suffers from faults on multiple levels to include how it was marketed and the way it's being reviewed. First, the reviews. Even negative ones don't seem to understand what noir, neo noir or "rural noir" mean. This is not a "noir" film in any capacity. This might seem like a somewhat trivial complaint, but in fact I sought this flick out because noir is one of my favorite genres. While Mob Land is gritty and bleak, it possesses absolutely none of the elements of (neo, rural, or just regular) noir. Second, also to the marketing: This movie was marketed well. A nice professional trailer, and even a theatrical opening if what I'm reading is true. On top of that it's currently streaming VOD on Amazon and other sites for more than $15, so clearly some money was spent on the front end of this production. Throw in the pretty decent cast and we aren't likely talking about a super low budget film. So why, then, if it's set in the present day with new smart phones and pill mills (where unscrupulous doctors prescribe opioids), did they get so cheap in the vehicle budget? We're supposed to believe a sheriff and police chief are driving around in 1980 model Blazers and 1987 Mercury Crown Vics? Even the most rural law enforcement agencies in 2023 have relatively new police vehicles. And what's with the ancient cars our protagonists drive? Like literally a 1984 Buick Grand National, and a late 90s model Honda Civic is the newest car shown more than once in the movie. Only the New Orleans mob boss gets chauffeured around in a late model GMC Denali or Chevy Tahoe. I'm not buying that this was a budget issue given all of the other stuff I've mentioned. No this was laziness and treating the audience like fools expecting those of us who have actually lived in remote-ish rural settings to not know that nobody drives those kinds of cars except as collectors anymore. If the producers, writers and directors really did not have the money to obtain a fleet of contemporary vehicles, they could have adjusted the story back about two decades in time - except then they couldn't use the pill mill plot device. Boy, sorry I spent so much time on that stuff. Let me move on to the movie itself. The script (dialogue) is awful. Plain dreadful cliché and stereotypes and a total insult to Southern small town rural Americans. Some of the turns of phrase are so ridiculous that I laughed out loud. "I'll slap ya so hard ya go to sleep and then slap ya for sleepin'..." "Well, taaaaarnation, I'll be a monkey's uncle...." Throwaway BS lines like that, which would be more at home in a Yosemite Sam cartoon or 4th grade level adventure book. It wouldn't surprise me if Travolta and Dorff were improvising if not for the fact that this wasn't an experienced writing/directing team behind them. But it wasn't just the more overt abuse of dialogue that ruined it for me; 90% of ALL dialogue in Mob Land is just as contrived, cliché and hyper sappy. IOW, just NOT believable AT ALL. Not even in a tongue in cheek joking manner if that was what the writers had intended. Just dumb. And Dorff took it to a whole other level with his one dimensional, unbelievable, ultra-nihilist hit man character who I found myself wondering what this type of man would even live for? He didn't even get sadistic pleasure from hurting (actually almost always killing) people and he goes on at length multiple times about how meaningless life is; this when he's not condescendingly and completely unbelievably berating towns folk like the waitress or gas station clerk about how pathetic they are for even existing, which he always starts by asking them "Is THIS what you wanted to be when you grew up?" in a super annoying tone of voice. LOL, whoever wrote this needs to look into a different career, but I'm quite shocked that Travolta and Dorff (whose characters are by far the worst offenders, although the other sheriff comes close) didn't question the director and push back against some of this cringeworthy completely unbelievable dialogue. I seriously doubt most A-listers would look at this script and not either laugh or mark it up with brand new dialogue. LOL Then we have the plot, which has so many holes that the movie could have been called Southern Swiss Cheese. I won't even get into them because I don't want to provide any spoilers; just know going in that you're going to be expected to suspend disbelief and accept some really illogical, contradictory and contrived story elements. Flat out - once you get past the relatively good cinematography (other than the shaky chimpanzee cam - I term I saw in another review and agree with totally) - there's absolutely nothing here that hasn't been done before, but better, more believably, and without condescending to its subject matter with tired, often bigoted tropes. Ironically this one was clearly made for the types of critics that give arthouse films high marks, but looking at the reviews it's getting, that backfired. So they better hope there's a bunch of people out there willing to shell out $19.99 to watch it on VOD, because if you've followed this review along this far, I urge you NOT TO DO.

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Cast Overview
  • Shiloh Fernandez
  • Stephen Dorff
  • Kevin Dillon
File Size
795.0 MB
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