Critic Reviews



Based on 49 critic reviews provided by
People don’t forget a performer like Redford, whose movie-star charisma idles low and sexy like a Harley Davidson motor even when he’s not doing anything, and that means a movie like David Lowery’s The Old Man & the Gun — a dapper, low-key riff on the bank-robber genre — can play things soft, counting on Redford’s charm to fuel the show.
The film makes plenty of mileage from trading on the charm of a good bad boy, and Redford’s long experience in playing such roles serves him beautifully here; he knows by now he doesn’t have to push his attractiveness to be ingratiating. His work here is natural, subtle, ingratiating and doesn’t miss a trick.
However suave the movie itself may be, it's another accomplished piece of work from a filmmaker who is now four for four, and continues to surprise with the range of his interests and output. And it’s a love letter to a cinematic legend, serving as a perfect final film for someone who long ago surpassed mere actor status to become an icon.
Mostly, the cat-and-mouse of Lowery’s film is just reason enough to contemplate the shuffling everydayness of life, of how we are ever aware of its finality while also tending to, seeking out, and appreciating the little joys, mercies, and adventures of it.
The Old Man & the Gun eschews pastiche for a sweet, affable character study that resurrects Redford’s original star power with a wet kiss. The entire picture amounts to a low-key cinematic resurrection.
The various marvels of the movie aren’t just the sparks between Redford and Spacek or Waits’ dry humor but often, Lowery’s inspired direction.
The film is fizzy, lightweight fun with some real moments of genuine heart.
The Old Man & The Gun is so reliant on the echoes of past films, on the career it’s constantly evoking and riffing on, that it sometimes feels as ephemeral as dust floating in a projector beam. But there’s something truthful and even moving in the way Lowery conflates the joy of one impossible occupation with that of another.
The movie feels like a Sunday drive with your own thoughts, where you get some good thinking done, even if you don’t come to any lasting conclusions.
The Film Stage
We’re treated to a series of breezy heist/cat-and-mouse montages and a lowkey, conversational charm that are combined to hammer home the idea of how great a feeling it is to love what you do.

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