GUN PLAY

Di­rec­tor David Low­ery changes tack with The Old Man And The Gun

Empire (UK) - - THE ULTIMATE AUTUMN PREVIEW - JOHN NU­GENT

MUCH NOISE HAS been made about the fact The Old Man And The Gun,a be­guil­ing crime com­edy about the ‘Over-the-hill Gang’, pen­sion­ers who rob banks po­litely, will be Robert Red­ford’s fi­nal film. Quite right, too. But one el­e­ment shouldn’t be ig­nored: it is also di­rec­tor David Low­ery’s lat­est ef­fort. A film­maker who has strad­dled both crowd­pleas­ing Dis­ney flicks (Pete’s Dragon) and weird art­house ex­per­i­ments (A Ghost Story), Low­ery has seized the op­por­tu­nity to cut loose.

“The rule on this movie was to just have fun,” he says with a smile. “I’ve made lots of movies where ev­ery­one’s com­ing to work ready to do some se­ri­ous drama and get the wa­ter­works go­ing, but on this movie we just wanted to smile ev­ery day. It was one of the most ef­fort­less pro­duc­tions I’ve had.”

This at­ti­tude, Low­ery hopes, shines through on screen, in a film that bub­bles with charm and warmth. It doesn’t do you any harm when you have screen le­gends such as Red­ford, Sissy Spacek, Danny Glover and blues icon Tom Waits sell­ing that charm. Low­ery still mar­vels that he as­sem­bled the cast he did, and at the tall tales they shared in be­tween takes. (Low­ery pin­points Waits shar­ing “his recipe for pan­cakes” as a par­tic­u­lar high­light.) Ev­ery day on set, Low­ery re­calls, in­volved “hang­ing out with a bunch of friends, watch­ing le­gends do amaz­ing things, and then go­ing home look­ing at dailies that felt like a lit­tle piece of film his­tory. It was just a joy.”

THE OLD MAN AND THE GUN

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