Thursday, December 13, 2018

Movie Review - Standoff

I've decided to start reviewing movies again. Short opinion pieces to give an idea of what might or might not be worth your time.

But few of them will be big box office movies, because there are plenty of other people doing that. I think I'll start off with the lesser known flicks I find, mostly on Netflix.

 Standoff is an interesting character drama and action thriller. Thomas Jane and Laurence Fishburne play well off each other, written as almost two sides of the same coin. Two soldiers that took different paths and reacted to the trauma of war in different ways.

I have enjoyed Thomas Jane since Deep Blue Sea, and he is no slouch in this role. A girl shows up on his doorstep asking for help, and he does the right thing and protects her, no matter the cost to himself. He's broken and tragic, but has the chance for redemption through heroism.

Laurence Fishburrne nibbles on the scenery as he explores the depths of psycho hitman. Not randomly crazy, just completely detached from morality and humanity. It's good to see him be something so diametrically opposed to Morpheus, and to be such an unlikable character.

The men are fighting over the young girl played by Ella Ballentine, and she does a great job. Most child actors are not very good, deliver poor line reads, but she was the shy, scared girl she needed to be. The writer also did a good job of not giving her adult speech patterns, but let her speak like a girl coping with trauma and in a terrible situation.

Adam Alleca directs a tight movie that brings out the loneliness of the remote farmhouse, and the desperate separation from outside help. Action scenes were well done, without being edited all to hell. There is some gruesomeness, but nothing too excessive or gratuitous. Characters don't do anything pointlessly stupid simply to progress the plot, or otherwise leave you wondering why they would behave that way.

Enjoyable to watch, and I definitely recommend it.

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