Saturday, 29 December 2012

Deadfall, dir. Stefan Ruzowitzky, wr. Zach Dean, st. Eric Bana, Olivia Wilde, Charlie Hunnam, Kate Mara, Treat Williams, Kris Kristofferson, Sissy Spacek

Despite the credible cast, Deadfall is uneven at best, utterly baffling at worst. Bana and Wilde play siblings Addison and Liza on the run from a heist when their car flips and leaves them stranded near the Canadian border in less than hospitable conditions. After deciding to split up and reconvene on the other side, the film lurches from scene to increasingly unbelievable scene like some feverish hyperthermic dream. Addison arbitrarily kills people on the way which is strange for a man trying to keep a low-profile, whilst Liza, who may or may not have Stockholm Syndrome after watching her brother kill their abusive father in their youth, shacks up with ex-boxer and ex-con Jay (Hunnam), freshly released from prison and himself on the run from the authorities. Elsewhere, sheriff Becker (Williams) mobilises a task force to track down the fugitives and cruelly and inexplicably excludes his deputy daughter (Mara) even though she's quite clearly able and resourceful. The disparate scenes attempt to interlock in a clever way but come off more Restoration Comedy than Greek Tragedy, and by the time the whole cast is on set for the final showdown, any semblance of rationale or motive has frozen over long ago, proving as stony and unyielding as the icy landscape.