Summary: Two West Virginian brothers plan to pull off the heist of the century with the help of a notorious explosives expert.
If I were to ask you to picture images that symbolize Middle America, I bet certain images would already jump out into your brain. Daisy dukes, working men in trucker hats, state fairs, mullets, pickup trucks, beauty pageants, and of course NASCAR. Most of our media exemplify this to the point of parody. When I first saw trailers for Logan Lucky, I was pretty sure I was going to get such a parody. Instead, I received a clever and human story with all the said elements.
To start, the main cast is exemplary and memorable. Channing Tatum excellently plays Jimmy Logan, a struggling blue-collar father who deals with the inadequacies of being let go from his job, living with a supposed family curse, and ultimately proving to be an incredibly capable criminal genius. Co-starring is Adam Driver as Jimmy’s Iraq War veteran brother Clyde, an amputee who gets a lot of character depth that is unfortunately ruined by another character blurting out his whole deal through very bad exposition. Even still, Driver does a hell of a job. The most fun and theatrical character is Daniel Craig’s turn as Joe Bang, an imprisoned weapons explosives expert the Logan’s bust out of jail to pull off the heist. I don’t think I have seen Daniel Craig in a comedic role but his character is a ton of fun to watch. The rest of the cast is good and there are even a couple of familiar faces who spring up from time to time.
As for the plot itself, the film plays out as an incredibly fulfilling and entertaining heist flick. From the initial setup to the heist, every step of the plan is incredibly fascinating and tense to watch unfold. In between all the heist stuff are elements like incredibly fun character interactions, hilarious comedy, and heartwarming family moments. This is an incredibly well-written flick that is full of tense moments and comedic goodness.
The aspect of the film I find most engaging is just how human all the characters feel. This film could have easily gone down as “Oceans 11 but with rednecks” but aims for something more grounded and mature. Of course, you’re not going to find an introspective and deeper dissection of that particular part of Middle America or the culture in this particular film. This is just a fun heist movie. I don’t expect it to try to get any deeper than that. Basically, it’s all the stuff that’s likable about Middle America, minus all the not so great stuff. Personally, I found it all quaint. Sure I would have loved to see a deeper dissection of middle America but I’m just happy with a surprisingly fun movie.
If I had to surmise my feelings about Logan Lucky in one word, I would use entertaining. It’s an incredibly engaging story with well written and likable characters. I would definitely recommend it if you’re looking for a movie night pick!
Side note: this movie has one of the best bits about Game of Thrones EVER. No spoilers but it is fantastic.