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Film Review

Uncut Gems (A24) [Movie Review]

From the mind of The Safdie Brothers and starring Adam Sandler, Uncut Gems is a powerful, adrenaline pumping crime-thriller that is not for the faint of heart.



Imagine being ripped out of your seat and plunged into the dark heart of an Ethiopian diamond mine. Workers toil away and you take a second to realize you’re watching a MOVIE while these people fight for their lives. Uncut Gems plunges audiences into the heart of the story, but buckle up, because you haven’t seen shit yet.

Ladies and gentlemen, prepare to witness the rebirth of Adam Sandler. The crime genre has been so thirsty for a thriller of this calibre; audiences know it, critics are starving for it, and studios have been missing it.

Here’s the deal: Howard Ratner (Sandler) is a jewelry dealer in the Diamond District of the coveted and secret scene in New York. While he’s up to his hips in debt, Howard is determined to get his one huge score. He’s got money, he’s got real estate; his rush is gambling and he NEEDS the JUICE. Adrenaline is his drug and he LIVES on it.

Enjoy a hit of adrenaline with the film’s official trailer.

The film’s manic and kinetic energy is electrifying to the point that it has you dancing on the edge of a heart attack the entire time. It’s like mainlining adrenaline laced with insanity. Sandler completely reinvents himself in this one, far beyond any of his other dramatic roles. Yes, even Punch Drunk Love. He should get an Oscar nod at the very least.

The fact that real-life NBA superstar Kevin Garnett plays himself, as the filmmakers matched the footage from 2012 and had him perform alongside it, is absolutely unparalleled. The Weeknd also appears as himself, which cements the fact that this film turns itself towards reality more than it does towards star-service.

Films test audience limits of believability every day, and this one slices how much reality can bleed on screen. Try to test how much neon this noir has in its veins.

Directors: The Safdie Brothers
Starring: Adam Sandler, Kevin Garnett, Lakeith Stanfield, Julia Fox
Distributor: A24
Release Date: December 25, 2019 (United States)
Run Time: 135 minutes

Examine an opal with Kevin Garnett in this clip from Uncut Gems.

After graduating with a degree in Media Studies and Journalism from the University of Guelph-Humber in Toronto, ON, Alex has been covering pop culture events since 2009. He has covered major festivals like Osheaga, North by North East, Edgefest, and Heavy T.O and interviewed members of the Foo Fighters and Carlos Santana (who featured the interview in his memoir) and more. Alex has also spoken with filmmakers like writer/director Shane Black (Iron Man 3), writer George Pelecanos (The Wire, The Deuce), feature film directors, actors, stunt coordinators and more. His passion for film lead him to write original screenplays and even made the Second Round of the Austin Film Festival in 2019. He loves movies, music, reading, writing, and festivals of all kinds while he works on his next feature film spec script.