Its time again for some MiniKickers, short reviews that let you know what’s worth watching among recent releases. If I had to come up with a theme for this edition it would be movies about men trying to do the right thing which involves hurting others. These three movies were all critically acclaimed when they were in cinemas, but how do they stack up now after this flurry of praise has calmed down? Let’s find out.
Blue Ruin (2013)
This American revenge drama came out of nowhere and was much loved for very good reasons. It tells its story about a man plotting to kill the person who murdered his parents. Obviously there are complications and events spiral out of control. Macon Blair plays the main character beautifully as the camera focuses on everything he does until we build up a picture of a tortured man. Blue Ruin is a gut-punch of a movie that treats revenge with a kind of respect resulting in something very special.
Cold In July (2014)
Coincidentally another revenge drama but this time with an all-star cast. Michael C. Hall plays a normal Texas family man who one night shoots an intruder in his home. From here things get more complicated as he’s dragged into a conspiracy that’s full of twists and surprises. The first third is quite dull until Don Johnson rocks up in a Cadillac with cow horns on it and the movie takes flight. The gear changes and it becomes an excellent black-comedy with action elements and great performances.
Finally we have one of the strangest films you’ll see all year, Locke stars Tom Hardy as Ivan Locke a construction site foreman driving to London to confront a past mistake. The entire film is just Hardy in his car in real time talking to friends and family on the phone. In different hands and with a different actor this could have been incredibly dull. Instead Hardy is mesmerizing, emoting with his face and voice beautifully (with a very cool Welsh accent). Once you know fully what’s going on it loses momentum and the journey feels longer but as an experiment in film-making and acting Locke is fully recommended.
Agree with these? If you wanted to go on a revenge fueled rampage, who would your first victim be? We’ll keep it between you and me, i promise.