Logan Lucky (4 stars)

Logan Lucky

Daniel Craig joins a knockout ensemble in Steven Soderbergh's hugely enjoyable hillbilly heist flick

Can Daniel Craig cut it as a platinum-blonde, redneck convict who spouts science? The answer is a resounding yes in Steven Soderbergh's latest and arguably best comedy heist movie, set in the hillbilly heartland of the American Southeast.

The Logan siblings Jimmy (Channing Tatum), Clyde (Adam Driver) and Mellie (Riley Keough) enlist the help of said jailbird – an explosives specialist appropriately named Joe Bang – and his two offbeat brothers (Brian Gleeson and Jack Quaid) to rob the Charlotte Motor Speedway during the biggest race of the year. Luckily Jimmy knows the cash delivery system, that sucks everything into one handy vat somewhere in the bowels of the track.

Soderbergh loves well-organised crime, as shown by his Ocean's trilogy. Despite saying he was giving up film forever, Logan Lucky is a humdinger: the cast is great (Seth MacFarlane, Katie Holmes, Katherine Waterston and Hilary Swank also pop up); Craig's Southern accent just about holds; the plot is satisfying; the dialogue delightfully witty; and Soderbergh's glorious cinematography captures sumptuous reds and glaring yellows and greens. So, who wrote the script? First-timer Rebecca Blunt apparently, who many suspect doesn't exist (the smart money is on it actually being Jules Asner, TV host and Soderbergh's wife, or perhaps even Soderbergh himself, who often edits and shoots his movies under pseudonyms).

Although it spins an elaborate web of time-dependent, cause-and-effect events, the film's intricacies never bog it down, while its rednecks are refreshingly intelligent. As a screen heist it has to be unlikely but it's at least logical. Logan Lucky is like those inline tube slides at a water park: you don't worry about where you're going, because getting there is so much darned fun.

General release from Fri 25 Aug.

Logan Lucky

  • 4 stars
  • 2017
  • US
  • 1h 59min
  • 12A
  • Directed by: Steven Soderbergh
  • Cast: Channing Tatum, Adam Driver, Seth MacFarlane, Riley Keough, Katie Holmes, Daniel Craig
  • UK release: 25 August 2017

Jimmy (Tatum), his brother Clyde (Driver) and sister Mellie (Keough) enlist the help of redneck jailbird and explosives expert Joe Bang (Craig) to rob the Charlotte Motor Speedway. Soderbergh’s latest comedy heist movie is perhaps his best, with a great cast, a satisfying plot and witty dialogue.