, , , ,

Having met while studying together at New York University, Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck seemingly enjoy their status as multi-hyphenate indie filmmakers — from their feature run with Half Nelson to Sugar, before attracting greater attention and recognizable stars on It’s Kind of a Funny Story and now Mississippi Grind — never straying too far from their gritty roots, which always linger around the edges of the frames. Mississippi Grind finds them squarely in their filmmaking pocket, tracking a pair of gamblers (Ben Mendelsohn and Ryan Reynolds) who can’t seem to appreciate that there might be more to life than the adrenaline rush when on the verge of either winning or losing everything. While there is a loose story/plot line to the narrative, Boden and Fleck have crafted the perfect interlude to encapsulate a never-ending story with little hope or light. (R) Grade: B-