With such credible titles as "The Social Network" and the Coens' recent Cannes sensation "Inside Llewyn Davis" on his CV, Justin Timberlake's acting career has hit a certain plane of respectability, without any one performance making either critics or audiences stand to attention. Now comes "Runner, Runner" -- the first film since Andrew Niccol's botched 2011 sci-fi "In Time" to pitch Timberlake to us as a bona fide leading man.
Director Brad Furman last brought us the diverting, attractive but none-too-remarkable thriller "The Lincoln Lawyer," and his latest appears to be, surprisingly enough, a diverting, attractive but none-too-remarkable thriller. Timberlake stars as a gifted Princeton student who loses his tuition money to a fishy online gambling site; confronting the site's venal owner (Ben Affleck) soon leads to collusion, with the FBI snapping at their heels. Cue lots of running, presumably.
Will this be the film that makes Timberlake a movie star, as opposed to a charismatic pop phenomenon who acts a bit? I wouldn't count on it: he looks as amiably serviceable as usual, though at 32, perhaps a little long in the tooth to be playing a wide-eyed college boy. On the evidence of this trailer, it's Affleck who's having all the fun in a rare villainous role -- though I think it's safe to say he won't be returning to the Oscars next year as anything but a presenter. Gemma Arterton does further eye-candy duty, and it's always nice to see Anthony Mackie, even in a stock government-official role.
The film opens Sateside on September 27, and though the opening shot of the trailer rather oddly references "A Beautiful Mind," this looks to be strictly post-summer popcorn fare. Nothing wrong with that. Will you be seeing it? How invested are you in Timberlake's film career? Watch the trailer and tell us in the comments.
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Cast: Tom Kane, Dee Bradley Baker, Matt Lanter
1995 | Mystery | NRSummary: Denzel Washington plays an out of work WWII vet who takes the wrong job and is soon neck-deep in a mess of politics, murder, and jazz in '40s Los Angeles.Director: Carl Franklin
Cast: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals
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Cast: Amy Schumer, Kevin Kane, Mike Houston
1997 | Crime | RSummary: Quentin Tarantino adaptats an Elmore Leonard novel into this story of a few increasingly desperate people scraping to get by.Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster
2013 | Drama | RSummary: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill have boundless energy in the story of a real-life commodities crook who earned millions through scummy small-time stock trades.Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
1993 | Sports | PGSummary: Emotionally powerful sports classic featuring Sean Astin as a skinny high school kid with big football dreams and the determination to make his way towards his dream team at Notre Dame.Director: David Anspaugh
Cast: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
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