Blue Ruin review by George Hooper - Cinema Paradiso
What starts as a simple vengeance story turns into so much more in Blue Ruin, a film that starts by putting its audience in a state of confusion only to slowly tease them out of it playfully through a story filled with spurts of brutal action and emotions long since squashed by its lead characters. If anything Blue Ruin is a masterclass in human psychology and the effects of loss.
Blue Ruin follows a drifter (Macon Blair) as he is informed by the police that someone from his past is being released from prison. This startling discovery sets him on a quest for vengeance against a man that did unspeakable things and received very little punishment. However what starts as one simple task quickly spirals as he is forced to protect his family that doesn’t know him from people he has enraged.
While the film feels gritty and ugly it also has a wonderfully colourful range of colours that add a beauty to a film full of horrors. Blair is a wonderful choice for the drifter as he hides a wealth of unspoken emotion behind his eyes and while the stereotypical down and out beard feels like a little much the film takes advantage of this stellar casting by throwing everything at him only to show he is more than capable of dealing it back at people.
Blue Ruin reminds me in many ways of The Raid, a film that feels like an action film but really hides a very real and very provocative story of family and the value of revenge and justice. All in all the film rides high on a stellar lead performance but it would be nothing without some excellent filmmaking and cinematography. The film shines off of the way it is displayed and everything about it is gorgeous.