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BLUE RUIN (2013)

Directed and written by Jeremy Saulnier, Blue Ruin is a well made, if not slightly overrated thriller about Dwight (Macon Blair) a man traumatized and turned into a wandering bum by the murder of his mother and father. As the man accused is being released from prison as part of his plea-bargain, Dwight sets a sloppy plan for revenge in motion that escalates into a war with the man’s family that leaves a trail of blood and bodies. The film is somber, but has some suspenseful moments and a quirky sense of humor, too. But there are some flaws, as Dwight seems too inept to get as far with his plan as he does and some plot conveniences help him along. It did always hold my interest, but it didn’t knock me out, nor did I find it even close to the film festival hype it has garnered. A quirky and entertaining little thriller, but I found it kind of forgettable after all is said and done. Reminded me a little of Blood Simple but far less gripping. Also stars ex-Brady Bunch-er Eve Plumb.

3 star rating



NOAH (2014)

Incredibly pretentious and dreary version of the beloved Bible story by director Darren Aronofsky that he co-wrote with Ari Handel. The movie takes a simple tale about faith, hope and renewal and turns it into a nihilistic fantasy flick that is not only boring, but filled with elements that just seem out of place, like a group of fallen angels that look like Transformers made of rocks and an epic battle right out of Lord Of The Rings. Sure, there are some startling visuals and some top notch SPFX, but it is a grim mess of a movie that takes a very good cast, including Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly and Anthony Hopkins (what ISN’T he in?) and leaves them afloat in a sea of pretension. Adding insult to injury, the film refers to God as ‘The Creator’ in what seems to be an effort to nullify the religious aspects of the story and turn it into a bizarre sci-fi/fantasy loosely based on the Biblical tale. A mess and a dull one at that.

2 star rating