“This is how I win.”

Howard Ratner

Hinging on a revelatory dramatic performance from Adam Sandler (whose “comedic” antics I find more tedious than amusing), Uncut Gems is an intentional cacophony of a film that draws you directly into the mind of its protagonist, a New York jeweller with a gambling addiction. His powerful self-belief and perilously weak grip on the reality of his situation make it difficult for the audience to follow or relate. Uncut Gems is an exhausting experience, reminiscent of Birdman but with the incessant snare drum replaced by Howard’s constant chatter. Uncomfortable as it may be to watch, it is all constructed with clear intent by the Safdie brothers, the freewheeling nature serving to keep things unpredictable even as we know Howard is out out of his depth. The result is likely to be unwatchable for some, but it is ambitious and original.

8/10