Holiday movies don’t come any more Christmasy than “Black Nativity,” a heart-on-its-sleeve musical fable of family friction that radiates holiday spirit.
“Out of the Furnace” comes from director Scott Cooper, who gives this melancholy melodrama a strong sense of place and a relentless deterministic pull.
For the second weekend in a row, director Lee Daniels’ The Butler, the racial bio-drama starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey, finished first at the box office, earning an additional $17-million.
This is a soundly made film, downright old-fashioned in its narrative confidence and technical simplicity, unerring in its period detail and behavior.
The best thing about the film is the sense of humor that it sustains throughout, some of it raucous, some of it low-keyed — until the bloodbath in the third act.