Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Review for 'Heartless'


Release Date - Out Now
Directed by – Philip Ridely
Starring – Jim Sturgess, Clémence Poésy, Noel Clark.

“Another horror movie. Just what the world needs.” say Matt Bochenski [for LWL] in his review of Philip Ridley’s latest film Heartless without any hesitation or care for his genre bashing. I myself am obviously a very big horror fan so for someone to say that I simply answer “Yes it is actually.”

But the thing is about Heartless is that it isn’t much of a horror. I’d say it’s about as much of a horror as Donnie Darko was. Sure they both have horror elements with Heartless verging more onto complete horror appose to Donnie Darko, but over all I’d say they where supernatural fantasy with cheap horror scares. But this connection between the two films which share the same themes and the same kooky and shy protagonist (not forgetting their demented psyches).

Heartless tells the Brother’s Grim like story about Jamie played by Jim Sturgess, a photographer from the East end of London who was born with a vivid birthmark on his face and body. He feels like he is a social outcast as the yobs around his building make fun of him on his way home which has thrown him into a pit of disperse and loneliness. One night whilst taking photo’s he comes across a strange scene with hooded daemons disguised as yobs screaming and cackling around a fire then at his brothers studio Jamie begins to fall for Tia played by Clémence Poésy who’s heritage and background is left in the shadows. What follows is these two instances begins his decent into this strange world of daemons and self loathing as Jamie makes a deal with Papa B.

I had been looking forward to Heartless for a few weeks now and after watching it I had to think it over. Now this to me isn’t a bad thing. Whether a film turns out terrible in the end if it made you think about it it’s done something to resonate in you. Thankful to say I really did enjoy the flick. At one point I began to doubt it however it recovered.

The dark portal of London will haunt the local’s nights and indeed those walking alone at night. The film is lead brilliantly by Sturgess and has some great actors making an appearance such as Noel Clark as the next door neighbour and my personal favourite Eddie Marsan as the Weapons Dealer. Some strange choices where made by the director and a lot about characters and plot are left in the dark to die which makes some element suffer but over all it’s an enjoyable look into the mind of a young man battling his daemons. We’ve all been there, but hopefully not to such an extreme. I can see this being dragged away by the cult movie community to a place it probably belongs.

Anticipation - 4
Enjoyment - 3
In Retrospect – 3

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