Normally, a romantic angle in a story like this merely feels tacked on. But here, it's a brilliantly concocted contrast to all the violence. And with the FBI in the mix and Doug's enemies never far away, the first blush of romance doesn't last for long anyway.

In one particularly effective scene, Jem almost lets the cat out of the bag about Doug's turbulent past to Claire when he unexpectedly spots the new lovers on a date. And it's in these tense moments when Affleck's directing abilities particularly shine, revealing a promising next chapter in the once-doomed actor's career.

CAUTIONS:

  • Drugs/Alcohol:  Social drinking and recreational drug use are both depicted. Single mom Krista's chances of seeing her young daughter are diminished because of cocaine and OxyContin use.

  • Language/Profanity:  There is a steady stream of profanity throughout, including instances where the Lord's name is taken in vain and liberal use of the "f" word.

  • Sex/Nudity:  In a quick jaunt through a strip club, a woman's breast is flashed. Before meeting Claire, there's a quick sex scene between Doug and Krista (no nudity, just plenty of grunting). It's also indicated that Krista will trade sex for the money she needs to support her daughter—and drug habit. There's another scene where Claire and Doug sleep together (no nudity, just a heavy make-out session before the camera cuts away).

  • Violence:  For Doug and his pals, bank robbery is a violent business, and they'll harm (or even kill) anyone who gets in their way. Several people are shot throughout with high-powered weapons (some at close range, and there are varying degrees of bloodiness), others are bludgeoned. A young woman is also kidnapped (but isn't harmed). There is also fairly graphic discussion of the violence that goes down in prison that involves Doug's father.

Christa Banister is a full-time freelancer writer, specializing in music, movies and books-related reviews and interviews and is the author of two novels, Around the World in 80 Dates and Blessed Are the Meddlers. Based in Dallas, Texas, she also weighs in on various aspects of pop culture on her personal blog

For more information, including her upcoming book signings and sample chapters of her novels, check out her Website.