So I finally got to see The Drop! One of the bad things about living in small town Montana is we don’t get every movie that comes out in the theaters, in our theaters. I am a huge Dennis Lehane fan and have read almost all of his work and seen every movie based on his novels. This story started as a novel, that didn’t get finished, that got turned into a short story, that got picked up as a movie and turned into a screenplay, movie gets made and the novel finally gets finished. The good news is Lehane is the one that wrote all the material. I read the book months ago when it first came out and thought it was a great little book. Since the book was actually written after the screenplay and movie, it doesn’t vary from the movie but may give a little more insight into the characters. Compared to Leahane’s current series, the Coughlin books, this is a short pulpy book, but no less fun.
I then was ready to see the movie, but had to wait for the DVD release and for Netflix to send it to my house. I know this film was a small film, but could have been a lot bigger at the box office in my opinion. Maybe we were spoiled in 2014 with so many great neo-noir films coming to theaters, maybe this got lost in the shuffle between Gone Girl and Nightcrawler. No, I would not put this movie in a class with those two, but it isn’t that far behind.
This film may be best known and go down in history as the last film of James Gandolfini. Gandolfini does his normal, but no less memorable New York baddy. This is also the first American film for director, Michaël R. Roskam. Roskam previous work Bullhead is a cool little country noir from Belgium and is worth searching out if you haven’t already seen it. Matthias Schoenaerts, who also worked with Roskam on Bullhead, does a great job as a street thug. Original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Noomi Rapace plays the slightly broken girl our protagonist falls for. Our protagonist is played by Tom Hardy, whom I feel is a very underrated actor. He always choices interesting roles and with the exception of “This Means War,” I’ve loved him in everything I’ve seen.
So a quick non-spoiler preview that works for both book and movie. We have a bar called Cousin Marv’s run by Bob and his Cousin Marv. The bar is a drop bar for the mob. A drop bar is where all the money owed the mafia is dropped at every night. There are many drop bars and the bars are picked at random each night. Our hero Bob is walking home one night and finds a puppy pit bull in a trash can, beaten and left for dead. The lady whose trash can the dog is found in, work together to bring the dog back to health. From this the story takes off on a wild ride of crime in a hard neighborhood.
So what wins in this book verses movie? I can’t decide, I really liked them both. Do this dynamic duo in whatever way you normally like to do them. Book then Movie, Movie then Book, I don’t think it matters, if you enjoy anything Lehane grab the one easiest for you to find and enjoy.