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Dustin Putman’s “Out of the Furnace” Isn’t Worth the Effort to Get Through

In response to Dustin Putman’s 1018‑word review of Out of the Furnace on

By ,

Dustin Putman’s “Out of the Furnace (2013)” is difficult to get through. Ultimately, it just isn’t worth it.

Let’s start with the most obvious problem: the presentation. The site page is certainly colorful and, at first, interesting. But the use of small, white, almost fluorescent lettering on a black background becomes a problem. Don’t be surprised if you’re rubbing your eyes, or having to reread certain parts to make sure you understood. A bigger font might have solved the problem. Right now, it makes for too much of a struggle.

Then there’s the unfortunate elephant in the room: grammar. Early on, the audience is asked to decipher, “The writer-director, Scott Cooper, previously helmed the Oscar-nominated 2009 musical drama, “Crazy Heart,” while the cast is accomplished from top to bottom…” (There’s more, but let’s stop here). Which cast? This one or the cast of “Crazy Heart?” And was the cast accomplished while the director was working on the previous film? It is possible, in context, to figure out what the critic is saying, but the audience shouldn’t have to work so hard to do it. Other errors of this nature, along with one or two typos, stand out as well.

Still, Putman gets on a roll only to stop the work in its tracks for the dreaded plot synopsis. He also has a tendency to over-analyze. More is definitely not better in this case.

Considering the work that’s needed in order to pull out what positives there are in Out of the Furnace, it’s better to find something else to do that takes less effort.  Like fixing your furnace.    

Quality of Writing Quality of Argument Spoiler Avoidance Presentation