The Outfit is a 2022 American crime drama film directed by Graham Moore in his directorial debut from a screenplay by Moore and Johnathan McClain. The movie stars Mark Rylance, Zoey Deutch, Johnny Flynn, Dylan O’Brien, Nikki Amuka-Bird, and Simon Russell Beale.
The premise of The Outfit is an intriguing one –
In 1956, Burling (Rylance), a master English tailor who relocated to Chicago from London, operates a corner tailor shop with his assistant (Deutch) where he makes expensive clothing for the only people around who can afford them: a family of vicious gangsters. One night, two killers (O’Brien and Flynn) knock on his door in need of a favour – And Leonard is thrust into a deadly game of deception and murder. (IMDb)
The entire movie essentially takes place in one location, Burling’s tailor shop, and operates more or less like a stage play. That in itself, might impact the suspension of disbelief for a contemporary movie, but is generally manageable. In the circumstances, the screenplay is dialogue-heavy littered with numerous expository monologues, especially from Burling, the main character.
The plot is cleverly crafted with many twists and turns along the way. The sequences are handled in a realistic manner, with the character backgrounds revealed in timely morsels, enough to keep the audience engaged and anticipating the direction of the narrative. There is nothing inherently illogical about the storyline, apart from certain historical details, which may be comfortably put aside.
The key asset of The Outfit is Rylance’s performance as the lead character. Burling is an intriguing role, with multiple layers granting Rylance the opportunity to shine. There is enough heaviness in Burling’s measured character that suggests that he is more than meets the eye. The rest of the ensemble cast never quite rise up to the same heights but are competent all the same.
The Outfit is an enjoyable retro-styled gangster movie that most genre fans will savour. Recommended!
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