Newton Boys

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20th Century Fox Released 1998

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Movie Summary

Director:
Richard Linklater
Released:
1998
Rating:
PG-13
Newton Boys captures the true life story of the most prolific bank robbers of the 1920s in a drama directed by Richard Linklater ("The School of Rock"). The Newton family has struggled to keep the family farm going. Oldest brother Willis Newton (Matthew McConaughey) learns how to crack open bank safes and convinces his three brothers to join him in a robbery spree that would span 80 banks and last for five years. Although youngest brother Joe (Skeet Ulrich) has trouble adjusting to a life of crime, Jess (Ethan Hawke) and Dock (Vincent D'Onofrio) enjoy the life of gentlemen bandits from Texas to Canada. Meanwhile, Willis begins a romance with lovely hotel clerk, Louise Brown (Julianna Margulies). Once the banks grow wise to their technique, the Newtons ambitiously decide to try their hand at robbing trains. This charming 1998 caper stays true to the actual family story, with an easy camaraderie between the talented cast. History buffs will enjoy seeing clips of the real-life Newtons during the film credits.moreless

Metacritic Score

  • 70

    The New York Times Elvis Mitchell

    If Mr. Linklater is not entirely at ease with action sequences (or with the obligatory having-fun montage once the brothers become successful), he still makes this (after ''Before ...

  • 60

    Variety Emanuel Levy

    An extremely handsome production that meticulously evokes the 1920s, and a likable male-dominated cast, headed by Matthew McConaughey in his best screen performance to date, only p...

  • 50

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    The film chronicles their criminal career in a low-key, meandering way; we're hanging out with them more than we're being told a story.

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    Themes

    Military & War, Crime