The Last Rites of Joe May is the kind of movie that you don’t see a lot of these days. The lead character of Joe May is played by Dennis Farina. The movie opens with him getting out of the hospital and discovering that some things have changed since he went in.
The city of Chicago is a character in its own right as the backdrop for this gritty urban. Returning to the world, Joe May tries to put his life back together but runs into a variety of roadblocks from his living arrangements to finding business partners to people thinking he was dead. The film has multiple storylines coming from his relationships with different characters. He befriends a mother and daughter and finds himself drawn to helping them even though it is against his nature. He approaches a shady long-time business associate played by Gary Cole for help in getting on his feet. It’s really nice to see Gary Cole in a uncharacteristically non-comedic role and he does a great job with the role.
But this movie belongs to Dennis Farina. From Midnight Run to Out of Sight, he has an amazing screen presence and connects with the audience to create unforgettable characters. As the lead here, he is flawless. Having to play an anti-hero like this who has good and bad qualities filled with regrets and some desperation, but still confident and optimistic about the future, he is great to watch and makes this good story into a great movie.
This movie is playing in limited release right now and is playing at:
34 West 13th Street, New York, NY
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