Saturday, April 9, 2016
SCENIC ROUTE (2013)
Directed By: Kevin Goetz & Michael Goetz
Written By: Kyle Killen
Cinematography By: Sean O’Dea
Editor: Kindra Marra
Cast: Josh Duhamel, Dan Folger, Christie Burson, Miracle Laurie
Tensions rise between lifelong friends Mitchell and Carter after their truck breaks down on an isolated desert road as they start to attack each other's life decisions with unwavering brutality.
This film takes you by surprise, I can't say it is anything groundbreaking, but certainly better then one would assume. Maybe as Josh Duhamel has never come off as a bad actor, but more of a movie star always when it comes to looks and charisma, but in a sense you never feel he really gets down and dirty into a role or character. They all seem more like versions of himself. Rarely does it ever seen a stretch. At least here he equates himself to a degree. That feels believable.
The film also co-stars Dan Folger, who is an actor who can be annoying In Certain roles and maybe one note a lot of times. Here he plays that type of character again, but here he is given depth an nuisance. That totally wins the audience over to his performance.
This movie is one that is best to go Into blind. So if you haven't seen it go do it and come back as the rest of the review will involve SPOILERS. So you have been warned.
This film plays and seems like a b-movie at first. As it seems more like a studio and audience friendly version of the Gus Van Sant film GERRY. Which has a very similar plot but different outcomes as Van Sant's film is more arty and seems more of a meditation of the situation that offers no hope. Nor tries to play with the audience and make it seem like there is. This film plays more into the drama of the situation similarly but also offers some breaks. Like flashbacks in the story. It also involves towns where it looks like they are saved or will be saved, but somehow mess it up.
What I thought was creative is that the characters continually make bad decisions. Which ultimately ends up leading to them sabotaging themselves along the way with each new fixture of hope that comes along.
Also early in the film you think it is the end and they the whole film will be a flashback that leads to that ending, but it really leads to the middle and leaves us with more story to follow.
The film seeks the desperation well and while it sets itself up as a thriller a bunch of times. It ends up being more a drama about characters and two friends in mid-life crisis's who come together to catch up and bond. Then end up pushy each other away and then find themselves truly caring for one another in Desperation and realize the power of their friendship as they struggle to survive.
Which i found fascinating. As well as the third act which really makes you question. What do you want to believe and what really happened. It seems to explain itself too Much instead of leaving it more open ended. Though it is appreciated that the film went in that direction. Rather then necessarily having more of a definition. That could either be the Hollywood ending or the more realistic hard truth ending.
This is a film that could be easy to write off, but if you give it a chance. You might find yourself entranced and actually enjoying the film. As it pulls you In the deeper the desperation of the characters becomes.
The to a degree it stays soft and doesn't go too dark as it could. Though it reaches some dark moments. At heart this is also a film Of friendship and male bonding to a degree. As well as mentioned before a mid-life crisis film.
It gets violent physically (obviously) and emotionally.
I Mean the poster of the film already draws you in, in what looks like a character from A MAD MAX film on the cover with a Mohawk and blood all over his face.
The film is 't a slam dunk and has it's problems, but it's actually impressive what was done here. Plus how successful it actually works. It's not as deep as it tries for, but works itself out to being satisfying.