Bill Murray is a hard actor to get a hold off. He has no voicemail, email, phone or agent; and he seems to pop up whenever he sees a script worth working for and this time round it’s the unknown writer and director Theodore Melfi whose screenplay for St. Vincent was included on the Hollywood Black List which is the best un-produced scripts which was back in 2011, only for a year later for Bill Murray to sign on for. You can understand why it was put on the black list; it’s a terrific screenplay that is full of heart and laughter. Bill Murray plays Vincent whose life is at rock bottom; he owes money to people, gambles any money he has or either spends it at his local bar getting drunk. Initially we see Bill Murray’s character as a complete loser, but as we dive deeper into the story, we find out there are reasons behind his aggressive and demeaning attitude.
Introduce Melissa McCarthy and newcomer Jaeden Lieberher who play Maggie & Oliver Bronstein who move next door to Vincent. Oliver who gets bullied at the first day of school has his uniform, keys to the house and his phone stolen by the bullies at school which leaves him to knock on his ignorant neighbours door, to which he reluctantly allows Oliver to stay until his mother arrives home. As a single mum, and not allowed to leave her job until her shift is done, she allows Oliver to stay with Vincent. Oliver & Vincent immediately get along like a house on fire; Oliver’s laid back approach to life intrigues Vincent who seems to of lost all hope with society and takes a liking to Oliver. He then agrees with Maggie to look after Oliver anytime she needs him to, which ends up being quite frequently. ‘St. Vincent’ isn’t all what it seems, it is a film that is funny, which is down to Bill Murray’s charisma and charm in which he pulls of his best performance since 2003’s ‘Lost in Translation’. Not only is Bill Murray exceptional, so is newcomer Jaeden Lieberher who hits the ball out of the park in an impressive performance. Together, their charisma carries the film and makes it a very good one.
‘St. Vincent’ isn’t just funny, but it’s a lot deeper than you would initially think; it covers the struggles of a single parent, pregnancy and grief. There isn’t much wrong with this film to be honest, the vast majority of the focus in this film is on Vincent & Oliver who blow everyone else off the screen. Melissa McCarthy’s character is intelligently pushed in every now and then when she is needed, which is great for me as I’m not the biggest fan of hers; and the running time of 100 minutes is delightfully perfect for a film of this kind. I am pleasantly surprised to as how good this film is, I am giving ‘St. Vincent’ 4 out of 5 stars.