Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

"The Company You Keep": Robert Redford Brings Back Activism 

Wednesday, Apr 10 2013
Comments

Robert Redford's new thriller seems pleasingly to share some DNA with his old thrillers — the ones he starred in, like Three Days of the Condor, and All the President's Men, and for that matter even Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. He's in his element calling shots both in front of and behind the camera in The Company You Keep, a movie about outlaws and aging lefty crusaders coming to terms with their legacies. Here Redford stars as a former Weather Undergrounder dodging the feds and tending to some urgent unfinished business with an old flame, now a pot-runner in Big Sur, played by Julie Christie. Hot on his trail is a tenacious journalist played by Shia LaBeouf in clever-guy glasses and an old-school-muckraker pose. The huge roster of strong supporting players includes Chris Cooper, Brendan Gleeson, Richard Jenkins, Susan Sarandon, Sam Elliott, Stanley Tucci, Anna Kendrick, Stephen Root, Terrence Howard, Brit Marling, and even Nick Nolte. Lem Dobbs's script, adapted from Neil Gordon's novel, is intelligent and only just slightly speechifying. The subtext – "Listen, kids, there was a time in this country when activists acted and reporters reported!" — seems sufficiently restrained. And although the movie seems gradually to tire of chewing on all it has bitten off, one senses its maker's respect for principled people of any generation.

About The Author

Jonathan Kiefer

Bio:
SF Weekly movie critic Jonathan Kiefer is on Twitter: @kieferama and of course @sfweeklyfilm.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Slideshows

  • Phish at the Bill Graham Auditorium
    Phish is in the midst of a block of sold out shows at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium (October 27-29). The Monday night concert featured a rare first set opener of “Walfredo” with the band members switching instruments for the song. The evening’s highlights included John Fishman and his iconic vacuum cleaner solo and favorites such as Chalk Dust Torture, Slave to the Traffic Light, Axilla, Rift, 2001 Space Odyssey, and Maze. The show also featured Phish’s debut of a, seemingly impromptu, version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” to with roaring approval of the, singing along, crowd. With Game 6 being tonight, partying Phish fans will join Giants fans in Civic Center Plaza where there will be a World Series viewing party on a large screen set up by the City. Photography by Jamie Soja.
  • The 4th Annual Masquerotica 2014 - NSFW
    The theme this year was Carnaval Mystique for the 4th Annual Masquerotica at The Factory. Attendees were entertained by strip dance, trapeze, and live music. Photographs by Calibree Photography.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed