Uncut Gems landed on Netlfix on Friday and people have spent the weekend catching up with Adam Sandler’s latest, and arguably greatest, work.
The film, Josh and Benny Safdie’s follow-up to Good Time starring Robert Pattinson, stars Sandler as Howard Ratner, a jeweller and compulsive gambler attempting to pay off his debts while navigating the streets of New York’s diamond district and the loan sharks therein.
Set around Passover in 2012, Uncut Gems is an exhilarating masterpiece that grips viewers from the opening frame and refuses to let up until the credits roll. The film is almost uncategorisable, simultaneously functioning as a psychological thriller, black comedy and addiction drama. Rarely has a movie so completely taken viewers inside the mind of an addict and we too start to believe everything will be OK for our “hero” if only his big bet comes through.
Lakeith Stanfield, Eric Bogosian, basketball icon Kevin Garnett and an array of inexperienced first-timers round out the cast and lend a sense of verisimilitude to a part of New York rarely captured on screen. The film was conceived in 2009 and the script has gone through several iterations (including a version with Kobe Bryant in the Garnett role) and it’s clear that an extraordinary amount of attention has been paid to ensuring the world feels entirely real.
The Safdie brothers’ latest effort, potentially their magnum opus, is as anxiety-inducing as it is audacious. The film was inexplicably not nominated for a single Oscar but the people have spoken on Twitter and it seems almost certain the picture will be remembered long after some of the awards frontrunners have faded from the memory.
Many were excited to see the movie for the first time.
Oddly enough the film is not yet available on Netflix in its country of origin, though.