I saw the movie “99 Homes” last night and find it to be one of the most compelling movies to come out in a long time. The writers most definitely know the seedy side of real estate, giving precise attention to how much the big banks and the government have screwed up the industry and the impact it continues to have.
While set in Central Florida a couple years ago, the film clearly has the element of “this could be in your community” as it shows what happens when people are at risk of losing their homes. We see the realty agents wanting their next commission, the banks wanting to close out “bad loans” they originally chose to make, and how the government gets ripped off in the process.
“99 Homes” also raises several moral questions, addressing the angle of “They stole from you, so you need to steal it back” and the pro and con of the choice. At the same time, we see how much the real estate industry still needs to be cleaned up.
This is how movies should be made. The writing is superb, and the acting is equally as excellent and convincing, especially during the many emotional scenes. Although some of the camera work is too shaky, in this instance it adds to the impact of making this seem like “real” experiences throughout this highly believable film.
The directing is solid, and the lighting is excellent as well. More importantly, this film shows that we don’t need special effects or name actors to make a film great. The only music was in the background and for impact, and not a bunch of popular songs to keep the audience awake and tapping their feet, like too many other films find necessary. It is the writing and how it is conveyed that make all the difference.
That is also without considering my personal emotional attachment of knowing two people who have lost their houses within the past 18 months. Every home owner can clearly relate to those portrayed in the movie on some level.
My only complaint would be that, at just under two hours, there should have been more time so that the story could have been carried out. As much as I liked the ending, this did not have to be one of those films where you know what “probably” happened. There were a couple of plot related questions not answered while the film should have easily been over two hours.
However, what turned to be the end was an ideal finish to an excellent plot. This film is clearly worth leaving home for!