Received on 8.17 from journalist/critic Lewis Beale, who lives in North Carolina: “I know I’m late with this, but they just screened Hell and High Water here last night. Just terrific. Top-notch on every level: direction, screenplay, acting, sense of place. Great subtext about the economy and predator banks. Chris Pine [is] a real revelation — always liked him, but here he is simply sensational.

“Two great speeches: when Jeff Bridges‘ partner talks about how the white man stole the land from the Indians, and now the banks are stealing it from the white guys; and when Pine talks about how generations of his family living in poverty is like a disease. I loved how the boys’ lawyer knew what they were doing, and encouraged them to set up a trust with the bank’s own money. I loved the two diner scenes — ‘Tell me what you don’t want.’ And those capturings of West Texas and the dead towns — truly depressing.

“One small nit — how did Pine get his gunshot wound taken care of? Any hospital would have reported him immediately. No big deal, though. This is the kind of film America should make more of, instead of the fanboy shit crowding the marketplace.”