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Oscar Isaac
The stakes are high in J.C. Chandor's gripping 'A Most Violent Year'
The stakes are high in J.C. Chandor's gripping 'A Most Violent Year'

"A Most Violent Year" is the most welcome kind of throwback. It brings to mind the fierce New York-based productions of Sidney Lumet in particular but also the whole notion of character-driven, the-clock-is-ticking melodramas in general. A vibrant crime story filled to overflowing with crackling situations, taut dialogue and a heightened, even operatic sense of reality, "A Most Violent Year" captures us and doesn't let go. Writer-director J.C. Chandor has now made a trio of gripping films (including "Margin Call" and "All Is Lost") each dealing in its own way with people trying to hold their own as a world they thought they knew closes in...

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