Blu-ray Tuesday: ‘A MOST VIOLENT YEAR’

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Preston Barta // Features Editor


A MOST VIOLENT YEAR | 125 min. | Rated R
Directed by J.C. Chandor
Starring Oscar Isaac, Jessica Chastain, David Oyelowo, Elyes Gabel, Alessandro Nivola, Glenn Fleshler and Albert Brooks

A MOST VIOLENT YEAR is only the third film from writer-director J.C. Chandor (MARGIN CALL, ALL IS LOST), yet it shows the maturity and control of a great auteur. Comparisons to a young Martin Scorsese are not unwarranted.

This gritty thriller tells the story of the Morales family as they struggle to maintain their business empire during 1981 New York, which, cue the title, is the city’s most crime ridden year. While Abel, played earnestly by Oscar Isaac (INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS) is constantly pressured by the elements of his surroundings, he’s not going to let the events threaten the life he worked so hard to build.

Isaac and Jessica Chastain (ZERO DARK THIRTY) both give unblemished performances as a couple whose lives are twisted in love and business. While the film is a slow simmer, it is later ferociously brought to a boil, before unleashing its fury in a third act that is absolutely riveting.

The Blu-ray Features Include:

  • Audio Commentary with Writer/Director J.C. Chandor and Producers Neal Dodson and Anna Gerb
  • Behind the Violence
  • A Conversation with Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac
  • The Contagious Nature of Violence: The Origins of A MOST VIOLENT YEAR
  • Deleted Scenes
  • Inner City Crew Outtakes
  • We Can Cure Violence Public Service Announcement

Other Titles Releasing Today:

AFTER THE SUNSET, DETROIT ROCK CITY, EMPIRE RECORDS, FOO FIGHTERS: SONIC HIGHWAYS, FOR THE BOYS, HOME SWEET HELL, THE IMMIGRANT, KILLERS, SINGLES, and THE VOICES

Next Week:

THE BABADOOK, BIG EYES, ENTER THE DANGEROUS MIND, KIDNAPPING MR. HEINEKEN, and THE MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS 2

About author

Preston Barta

I have been working as a film journalist since 2010, dividing the first four years between radio broadcasting and entertainment writing in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. In 2014, I entered Fresh Fiction (FreshFiction.tv) as the features editor. The following year, I stepped into the film critic position at the Denton Record-Chronicle, a daily North Texas print publication. My time is dedicated to writing theatrical film reviews, at-home entertainment columns, and conducting interviews with on-screen talent and filmmakers, as well as hosting a podcast devoted to genre filmmaking (called My Bloody Podcast). I've been married for seven happy years, and I have one son who is all about dinosaurs just like his dad.