By: John Allen
A friend of mine once said, “A good movie is never long enough, and a bad movie is always too long” I know what he means. When I saw Mad Max Fury Road, it clipped along at a rapid pace. It was beautifully done and akin to a Sci Fi opera. The acting, direction, special effects, and story were all so superb that it fully engrossed us until I was so amazed that the time had flown by that at a particular point I realized, “Oh my gosh, we are in the third act. Already?” I then looked at my watch wondering if perhaps it was a shorter length movie, perhaps an hour and a half as opposed to the standard two. Nope. It was just that darn good. So much so, you may recall, that it was nominated for Best Picture of the Year at the Oscars.
Sometimes, you can have good direction, fine acting, and an acceptable premise but still wind up with a movie that is weeeelll…….less than engrossing. That is my problem with Blood Bound. I just really didn’t care all that much about the characters or what was happening to them. I blame perfunctory writing for this. The premise is solid. A group of young adults wasting their lives on drugs, over hear of a house that has a chest full of money. No mere rumor, the movers saw it, touched it, desired it, then bragged about it, but did not steal it (bully for them). Our band of miscreants plan a daring break-in to steal the load only to find out they picked the wrong house. The domicile is the home of a coven of…….witches?……..Satanists?………..Voodoo worship?…………um……….hmm……. people who can cast spells and control you! And the plot continues disjointedly from there, Hazzah!
When writing scripts there are really only two questions that matter, whether its the protagonist or antagonists, those questions are; “Who are these people, and why should I care?” If either of those two questions is unanswered or answered unsatisfactorily you have lost your audience. This is what I found plagued Blood Bound. The only originality in the script was that our protagonist final girl was not the sugary sweet good girl of days of yore and a Stockholm Syndrome like plot twist . Speaking of which, Eden Brolin as Kerry is the stand out of this film. Her performance while subtle and understated is believable. She makes the most of her lines in a hodgepodge story and draws you into her world turned upside down. I hope to see more of her as I think she could have a pretty decent acting career ahead of her.She makes the film worth watching.
The directing by Richard LeMay is nicely done, he has created some beautiful shots, framing the movie well. He does marvelous pictures of nature and scenery, deftly dropping the actors into them. The geographical region of where a story like this might take place is well represented by his direction, much like we completely believe all the scary scenarios of Stephen Kings Maine. Le May also wrote the script so I wish he could focus his keen eye a little more in fleshing out better dialogue and story points. I think LeMay shows both promise as a director and writer. I await his magnum opus which I am sure one day will come, unfortunately Blood Bound isn’t it.
2.5 Eden Brolins out of 5.
Available on VOD January 15, 2019 from Clay Epstein’s Film Mode Entertainment.