First Hit: Pretty good film, yet predictable and outside of Joaquin Phoenix’s acting the rest was good and definitely not great.
This is one of the better adult roles for Joaquin Phoenix.
There is more range and I infinitely liked him better in this film than the Johnny Cash film. I was disappointed in Mark Wahlberg’s role because he can bring so much depth to everything he does and it felt like something was left on the table.
Robert Duvall's role also left me wondering what happened to the depth he can bring to a character. Wahlberg and Phoenix had wanted to do this film for years and I don’t know why the story didn’t quite shine through after finally being made.
All the components of the film were strong yet very predictable.
On a positive note outside of Joaquin’s performance, many of the smaller bit roles, Joaquin’s right hand man, his father’s aids, and Eva Mendes added color and substance to this film.
Overall: The film kept me engaged and the ending was predictable early on.