22 November 2018

Widows review

Widows, the latest film from writer/director Steve McQueen, is something of a strange film to try to talk about, and not just because this fairly prestigious production from the director of 12 Years a Slave and starring a number of big name actors turns out to be based on an early 1980's ITV series of the same name. The premise is simple enough - after their husbands die during a job gone wrong, a group of widows must pull off a heist their husbands had planned before their deaths in order to placate a dangerous criminal - but it's the way that Widows tackles that premise that makes it complicated to discuss.

You see, while Widows is inarguably a heist film, it's quite unlike any heist film I've seen before, certainly a far cry away from the glitz and glamour of the Ocean's movies. It terms of tone it's far more similar to something like Michael Mann's Heat, but even then there are fundamental differences in how each film approaches its story, characters and themes that keep them arms length apart. Widows isn't a film about absurdly complex plans or criminal codes of honour - it's just the story of a group of determined women forced to do something they'd all much rather not be doing, and doing it to the best of their abilities.