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LimeGreenLegend

Blue Ruin [RSC Film Club 16]

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LimeGreenLegend
Posted (edited)

The film club is all about sweet revenge this month thanks to @omarcomin71, with the winning film nominated by @doubleg213 and @JuniorChubb, Jeremy Saulnier's Blue Ruin.

 

Blue Ruin (2013) Japanese movie poster

Written and directed by Saulnier, who also wrote and directed the fantastic Green Room, Blue Ruin stars Macon Blair (The Florida Project, Logan Lucky) as a man out for revenge, and that's about all I know about this film.  I am looking forward to this though, as it has received excellent reviews, and Saulnier won the FIPRESCI award at the Cannes film festival for this film, an award previously won by legendary names like Orson Welles, Ken Loach, Jean-Luc Godard and Woody Allen.  From watching Green Room, I'm expecting this to be a tense, stylish thrill-ride with not an ounce of fat, and can't wait to dive in.

I'd forgive you if you were crazy, but you're not

Edited by LimeGreenLegend
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Con
1 minute ago, JuniorChubb said:

Fix!

Hahahaha...sorry...but the wheel works in mysterious ways. I have yet to get one of my nominees to win and we are going on 14 months now. lol. And trust me, I would have used my Film Club God powers the month Musicals was a genre on the wheel which happened to win. lol. 

 But it is funny you said that because I want to start spinning the wheel LIVE!!! I just think it would be just as fun. 

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Con

I didn't read the summary above as I don't want to know anything about this whatsoever as I had never heard of it.  

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LimeGreenLegend
Just now, Con said:

I didn't read the summary above as I don't want to know anything about this whatsoever as I had never heard of it.  

I don't know anything about it either 😄 the original post is spoiler free.

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omarcomin71

I checked out the trailer after it was nominated twice   I’m looking forward to watching it. 

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omarcomin71

I’m 11 minutes into the movie and I had to pause to say I’m already hooked and have to see where this goes. 

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omarcomin71

As I said before I’m easily entertained and am normally a thumbs up or thumbs down kind a guy.   As of right now I’d like to hold off on commenting till most have a chance to see it. 
 Overall...👍

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LimeGreenLegend

Half an hour in and this is great, really unexpected stuff happening already.

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doubleg213
Posted (edited)

Glad to see people are enjoying it. I saw it not long after it was originally released and loved it but it's never been well known which is why I nominated. 

 

I thought it was nice to see something where it's not all Charles Bronson, guy picks up a pistol having never used one and is a lethal killing machine. It's just a regular guy going about it for a change and being slightly suspect at it.

Edited by doubleg213
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djw180

The film was not what I expected. At the start I imagined this was Dwight tracking down someone to kill just living on the road. But then we learn otherwise. It was the trauma of losing his parents that lead to him just leaving home and living rough for years. When he does get back in touch with his sister, shaves, cuts his hair and gets back into his normal clothes he looks like a fairly ordinary bloke, not at all like a typical revenge film killer, which he isn't. I like the fact he has clearly never used a gun in his life before and has no proper plan, just improvises as he goes along. Not that, I hope, storeys like this occur very often in real life, but it's very “ realistic”. The ending is good as well; there are no winners in a story like this, it's just about something Dwight feels he has to do, no matter what.

 

There were a couple of things I didn't like so much. I would have liked more back story. It might just be my curiosity, but I wanted to know more about what exactly happened to his parents and exactly why he had a breakdown. It's not as simple as 'someone killed his parent' because his sister did not react the way he did and obviously she suffered the same. I also can't quite get my head around how long the man convicted of killing them spent in prison. It gave the impression of only having been a few years. So presumably the conviction wasn't for murder, if it had have been then a double murder would have surely got a lengthy sentence if not life. That makes me want to know more about what exactly happened. Did Dwight know something that didn't come out in court?

 

The other thing was the lighting. At times it was like someone had adjusted the contrast and brightness to make some scenes very hard to see what was happening, particularly early on in the film. I think this was the films way of conveying things were not really clear in Dwight's mind. But it just didn't seem consistent enough. I'm still not 100% sure this wasn't a fault on my copy of the DVD, I can't find any mention of wierd lighting in the film from any web searches, so if others could confirm the film was like this for them that would be great thanks.

 

Anyway, overall a good film, slightly better than I was expecting.

 

7/10

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doubleg213

Not sure if I am remembering it correctly but I am sure I read something a few years ago that the average time served for someone committing murders in the US is something like 11 or 12 years.

In the movie he's served 20 and it's set in Virginia, according to Wiki (which may or may not be accurate) the law there is 5 to 40 for second degree murder and 20 to life for 1st degree, but it states if serving life they are eligibile for parole in 20 or if they turn 60 years old so it's plausible for him to have served 20?

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omarcomin71

Okay here’s my quick and short review. I have yet to read any others as not to skew my opinion. 
 

Blue Ruin Review 
I’ve seen a quite a few revenge movies but this one stands alone. Very unique script! It’s not long after the movie starts that you realize the main character is depressed and down on his luck. When it’s brought to his attention that his parents killer has been freed it becomes clear why.  
I like the fact this man seeks revenge without any reason to think he would succeed.  A regular guy with nothing to lose. 
As far as filmmaking goes I appreciate the fact they didn’t treat the audience as stupid. They didn’t point out the characters relationships with dialogue they make it obvious with what’s going on. (I hope that made since)
Acting was great and the filmmaking was great which makes me want to look up what else the actors, director and producers have done. 
My only argument as far as a revenge movie goes, is that I didn’t see what happened to create the injustice. Normally the audience witnesses the injustice and therefore are angry and seek vengeance as well.  I didn’t feel the anger or the pain that Dwight was feeling that I might have if I saw his parents killed. 

Overall thumbs up 👍 and a great selection! 

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Con
Posted (edited)

Blue Ruin (2013)

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The Awesome: The story unfolds more through images than dialogue...so the cinematography needed to be exceptional and exceptional it is...low budget be damned!! Take the opening images, man in tub hears a noise in the house, he is spooked (although we never see his face)...but not because he thinks its an intruder, we are shown the truth of the situation and it is such character reveal. Sure, Dwight (Macon Blair) is homeless and a social outcast but we can tell there was a normal past by his desire to clean himself. f*ck yeah, I wanted to know more about him. Although the second half of the film brings in more exposition through dialogue, it works because by that point I just wanted to know exactly what it was about the past that affects these characters so much. The way things are revealed make it so much fun to experience cause you know I like to guess what is gonna happen next in these revenge films. The violence is beautifully done...we get in, we get out, and we know why it feels right. The more I think about what I watched, the more I love the writing. Take the arrow removal sequence...once we are in the pharmacy and I saw what was being purchased, I rolled my eyes because as I thought, "no way this inept person will succeed" and I became a little disillusioned as the sequence progresses and then, BAM! the sequence is rescued as we get back to the realism the film style was rooted in. I would've high-fived the writers that very instance. 

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The Good: I quite enjoy revenge films and even more when they take interesting paths and twists as we close in on the conclusion. The acting was great by everyone, and while most of the acting was a bit subdued, we still get great moments from all of them.  I thought the Teddy (Kevin Kolack) scene was pretty good, "...I guess he didn't f*ck cause of the cancer---- but he watched his favorite tv shows." ....that line made me laugh because it was so unexpected and the conclusion of that scene was probably my favorite part of the film. Really enjoyed how tense the film becomes once Dwight knows he has f*cked up as every location after that becomes dangerous and what more can you ask for in a revenge film? and what made it more enthralling for me was how the main character is written, Dwight is not built for what he tries to achieve. Another thing I liked and wasn't expecting in this genre tale was the use of no flashbacks. The important exposition comes fast and brief, we really get the bare minimum but it is all by design and helps keep the tension tight. The writing also stands out in that we see how Dwight's actions cause a ripple effect through the people he knows...including Ben and I think that is why Dwight disables Ben's truck.

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The Bad: This is a nit-pick but I have to address it cause as I watched it happening I had to ask..."Where are the neighbors?", the scene is set in a quiet residential street at night and not a single light turns on to check out what the ruckus is about? I don't know, I guess I just expect people in the suburbs to be nosy. Now I didn't mind the lack of police throughout the rest of the film, especially when we learn that things are being kept "In house" but that street scene stood out because of how long it went on. I also wanted to learn why Ben (Devin Ratay) felt so indebted to Dwight that twenty years later he would just offer up his rifles and guns without wanting to "know" why Dwight needs a weapon. People that don't like a slow burn will probably feel the film drags its feet and the way Dwight begins his arc, all disheveled with the body language of a defeated man going about his mundane homeless existence goes a long way into the film starting at a crawl but don't worry, once there is no turning back for Dwight, the film picks up the pace and after that everything feels urgent. 

SQmJLcQ.jpg?1

The Ugly: The only moment I found stupid was what is done with the guns and rifles found at the McCleeland's home. I mean, I get that Dwight is not a weapons expert and I fully understand why he would dispose of them to keep them from finding themselves in the hands of their owners but we had been shown the struggle for Dwight to get a weapon and he doesn't even consider keeping at least one of them? I get that he just felt more comfortable with the A-Team rifle but I had to question that logic and was the only thing that i felt was done to make Dwight look more pathetic and inept...I think since I accepted the lack of police presence throughout the film, I would've had no problem with Dwight admiring one of the assault rifles and having it accidentally fire into the wall and making that the reason he disposes of all the weapons and just keeps the one he brought. 

4sF13nQ.jpg?1

Final Verdict....4/5.....Revenge is a dish best served cold-----after you apply serious critical thought, know your limitations, consider the ripple effects that could impact your loved ones, and become proficient with firearms of all types.   I really enjoyed this because for a simple story, I was put through such a wide range of emotions; it made me laugh, it shocked me at times, it made me feel empathy and sympathy for almost everyone I saw on screen, it surprised me with subtle twists, it angered me, it kept me guessing, it gripped me with suspense, and it used violence in a realistic way, which is far more intriguing than Chuck Norris blasting an entire militia with inaccurate twin Uzis. The ultimate message I got out of the film was that one needs to make sure they have all the correct information and have applied the most critical of thoughts before they set out on a path of vengeance and consequences. Jan Brady with a Tec-9!...never thought I'd ever type that sentence. I avoided this thread after my first visit and keeping myself in the dark about the film made it that much more enjoyable. All I knew going in was that he was a homeless guy with blood on his clothes...and I wasn't disappointed.

Edited by Con
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Con
On 4/26/2020 at 3:22 PM, djw180 said:

The film was not what I expected. At the start I imagined this was Dwight tracking down someone to kill just living on the road. But then we learn otherwise. It was the trauma of losing his parents that lead to him just leaving home and living rough for years. When he does get back in touch with his sister, shaves, cuts his hair and gets back into his normal clothes he looks like a fairly ordinary bloke, not at all like a typical revenge film killer, which he isn't. I like the fact he has clearly never used a gun in his life before and has no proper plan, just improvises as he goes along. Not that, I hope, storeys like this occur very often in real life, but it's very “ realistic”. The ending is good as well; there are no winners in a story like this, it's just about something Dwight feels he has to do, no matter what....

 

23 hours ago, omarcomin71 said:

Blue Ruin Review 
I’ve seen a quite a few revenge movies but this one stands alone. Very unique script! It’s not long after the movie starts that you realize the main character is depressed and down on his luck. When it’s brought to his attention that his parents killer has been freed it becomes clear why.  
I like the fact this man seeks revenge without any reason to think he would succeed.  A regular guy with nothing to lose. 
As far as filmmaking goes I appreciate the fact they didn’t treat the audience as stupid. They didn’t point out the characters relationships with dialogue they make it obvious with what’s going on. (I hope that made since)
Acting was great and the filmmaking was great which makes me want to look up what else the actors, director and producers have done. 
My only argument as far as a revenge movie goes, is that I didn’t see what happened to create the injustice. Normally the audience witnesses the injustice and therefore are angry and seek vengeance as well.  I didn’t feel the anger or the pain that Dwight was feeling that I might have if I saw his parents killed. 
 

Great summaries!! Will touch on some of your points later. 

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