Vincent (Bill Murray) is a curmudgeon, with no money, little prospects and a regular Tuesday visit from Daka (Naomi Watts), a pregnant prostitute. Enter Maggie (Melissa McCarthy) and her son Oliver (Jaeden Lieberher) who have just moved in next door as Vincent finds himself looking after Oliver after school, for a small fee. It leads to Vincent and Oliver becoming unusual friends as Vincent teaches him how to deal with the bullies at school whilst Oliver becomes his little buddy. But when events lead to trouble for Vincent things start to change for everyone.
I will be honest, I use to find Bill Murray funny but in recent years the comedies he has done have frequently left me under whelmed. Truth be told so much what passes for comedy these days leaves me yearning to be able to return to the 80s and stay there. That brings me to "St. Vincent" a movie which if you expect to be a Bill Murray comedy you might end up disappointed by. In truth I was to start with although it did end up growing one me.
The thing about "St. Vincent" is that whilst you have the comedy of Bill Murray being a grump who ends up going on various exploits with the innocent kid next door what you actually have is an emotional drama surrounding how things play out for Vincent and who he really is behind the grumpy facade. But here is the thing, I can't tell you any of the details because when this movie started I was less than impressed, in fact my notes were less than complimentary. But as this story comes together I found myself being drawn in to the life of Vincent, what happens to him and also those around him. In truth I was surprised by how much this movie ended up capturing my attention as it had really struggled at the start.
What is for certain is that Bill Murray is certainly trying to do different things as an actor and comedian and he certainly achieves it here with a performance which ends up taking you by surprise due to its sensitive underbelly. It isn't that the character is in anyway original but Murray really brings out the nice guy without being too nice with it.
What this all boils down to is that "St. Vincent" initially didn't work for me and maybe I was expecting the wrong sort of thing. By the time "St. Vincent" was over I was completely engaged with this tender, emotional drama with Bill Murray impressing when it comes to the characters tender underbelly.