MMT Quick Review of SHOT CALLER

A successful businessman is incarcerated for a horribly unintentional, and completely irresponsible, crime. In order to survive, he must reinvent himself completely and go beyond any moral barometer he’s ever lived, for the safety of himself and ultimately his family. This is the basis of the film SHOT CALLER, which opened in select theaters (unfortunately the Philly market was changed/cancelled last minute) and video on-demand on August 25.

Starring Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones) in the lead, and Omari Hardwick (Power, Middle of Nowhere) as a tough as nails detective trying to bring a prison related crime ring to justice – yes, the opposite of his beloved Ghost/James St. Patrick character on the Starz crime drama “Power” – “Shot Caller” is a flashback fueled, violent, and intense journey that deviates from the standard crime saga and offers some unexpected takes – but we’re spoiler free, so I’ll leave it there. 😉

What I will say is lead actor Coster-Waldau’s – although I question how believable the actions of his character (this is one prepared former businessman) would be in reality – gripping performance allows the audience to suspend disbelief and invest in witnessing his rise in a crime-ridden world and the disheartening choices he chooses for survival.

And for those who after last night’s season finale are experiencing “Power” withdrawal, like myself for approximately the next nine months, here’s an option for that “Hardwick in the crime world” fix.

Streaming now at online providers, including iTunes and Amazon, “Shot Caller” was both written and directed by Ric Roman Waugh and distributed by Saban Films.

Let me know what you think when you watch it family.

Until next thought, Thomasena


SHOT CALLER follows the harrowing, often heart-rending journey of successful businessman Jacob Harlon (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) who is transformed into Money, a stoic, ruthless prison gangster after a DUI sends him down the rabbit hole of the American prison system. As he navigates the brutality of his new home, adapting to its violent codes of ethics and rites of passage that will ensure his survival, he slowly loses his previous identity and his relationship to his former life, including his wife and son. The grip of his new family, the prison gang, extends beyond the prison walls. Upon his release, chased by the law enforcement, threatened by his incarcerated “protectors,” Money must orchestrate one last dangerous crime. All is not what it seems. The ruthless process of fulfilling his obligations also becomes his path to sacrifice, retribution and self-definition.

Written and Directed by: Ric Roman Waugh

Starring: Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Omari Hardwick, Lake Bell, Jon Bernthal, Emory Cohen, Jeffrey Donovan, Evan Jones, Benjamin Bratt, and Holt McCallany

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