'The Last Days of American Crime' Review

'The Last Days of American Crime' Review
An Abysmal Waste of An Intriguing Premise

Rating: ★

For aspiring filmmakers, watching bad movies is a great way to learn from other's mistakes and grow as a creator, and well, 'The Last Days of American Crime' is an excellent learning tool for what not to do. Based on the Rick Memender graphic novel of the same name, the movie follows the set-up and execution of a multi-billion dollar heist before a mind-altering signal goes live across the United States that makes it impossible for anyone to willingly break the law.

On both technical and filmmaking levels, the movie stumbles on every step; practically nothing works. The cinematography feels ripped straight out of a sit-com; constantly moving, and zooming in and out as if it is supposed to catch Jim Halpert's reaction. The writing is terrible; not only is the dialogue cheesy and convoluted, but the way the story unfolds is bizarre and often confusing. The performances from the cast range from laughable to dull. At times you can chuckle at the over-the-top acting from the cast but for the most part, it is depressing to watch talented actors phone it in. The social commentary on modern-day America is on-the-nose and as subtle as a brick wrapped in barbed-wire to the face. Despite running at 148-minutes long, this movie oddly feels rushed and incomplete. Almost as if it is missing slices of its story. If it does work on a story and thematic level, does it at least deliver on its action sequences? Nope! The action in this "action-thriller" is both ruined by the gross violence and choppy editing that makes it impossible to follow what is happening. When all these poorly executed elements are combined, it makes for a movie so unremarkable and boring that you would have a far more enjoyable and interesting time washing the dishes.

In an attempt to make 'The Last Days of American Crime' a quote-unquote "cool" and relevant action-thriller, director Olivier Megaton sacrifices good filmmaking, such as great writing, a coherent story, visually engaging cinematography, good performances and an intriguing concept, for style. A trade-off that ultimately does not work, resulting in an abysmal near two and a half hours of wasted potential.