A family's moral codes are tested when Ray Tierney investigates a case that reveals an incendiary police corruption scandal involving his own brother-in-law. For Ray, the truth is revelatory, a Pandora's Box that threatens to upend not only the Tierney legacy but the entire NYPD.
A factory worker, Douglas Quaid, begins to suspect that he is a spy after visiting Rekall - a company that provides its clients with implanted fake memories of a life they would like to have led - goes wrong and he finds himself on the run.
Victor, a rising gangland player, has infiltrated the crime empire run by ruthless kingpin Alphonse, with the single purpose of making Alphonse pay for destroying his once happy life. As he meticulously orchestrates his vengeance from his high-rise home, Victor watches and is watched by Beatrice, a mysterious young woman who lives in the apartment across from his. On the surface a fragile woman-child, Beatrice seethes with a rage of her own. When she uncovers Victor's dark secrets, she threatens to expose him unless he helps her carry out her own campaign of retribution. Each fixated on avenging the past, they devise a violent and cathartic plan that could change their worlds forever. Written by
Director Niels Arden Oplev has disowned the American advertising campaign, which he felt misrepresented the film. He also spoke of budget problems during production, which forced him to speed up the shoot, and of not being able to edit the film the way he would have preferred. See more »
When Beatrice and Victor speed away from the home of the driver of her accident, she pulls the emergency brake on his truck. Full size trucks, a Dodge Ram in this case, have the emergency brake pedals to the far left of the driver, not levers like in small cars. Victor would have had to initiate the brake, not Beatrice. See more »
[holding infant son]
It wasn't meant to be this way, you know? We make our plans, sure. But life... life is what happens to you along the way. You know, first I didn't want this. I didn't want to connect. I didn't want to get involved. But she kept on with me, you know. This is what life is. This is why we're here. To connect. To... to build. We're here to build something. And then we had Theo. And then I understood that... you know, she was right. We're not meant to be alone. You ...
See more »
In the seemingly police-less gangland, Dead Man Down takes you through a labyrinth of visually distinct fascinating characters in an existential approach to both the dilemmas of revenge an their consequences. The action is not superfluous and hollow, but done in a way where each beat is well orchestrated with both real purpose and visual panache.
Through the "doll like" character Beatrice and her adjacent complex neighbor Victor, this film manages to portray an engrossing romantic angle highlighted by its believability through the shear awkward yet genuineness of their interactions. After the tonal shift of the reveal there becomes a form dark energy of rapidness that engulfs them. The eyes of Beatrice become dark and manic, full of pain, culminating in an iconic car sequence of dizzying passion.
Alphonse is a very convincing crime lord at the edge of his mental ropes. In a certain scene you can see the instability as his character while he sits in the shadows eying Victor like a shark as he walks into the frame. An effective rendition of a classy character in command after working their way to the top having to once again become savage in order to remain atop his hill. With his main goons we have Killroy the seven foot tall muscular man with the deep booming voice, Terry the skinny tattoo covered man, and Darcy the smart friend of Vicker who becomes the scariest character in his on right.
This film has the pacing and build like an old crime film, complete with dramatic emotionally spilling performances down to its very ending note. The dialog and characters are so fascinating that when the violence begins occurring you generally care about them. The message is not one glorifying revenge as many films succumb to, but one showing the results of their outcome, which the film has many variations of each character must deal with on their own. This film is an original Neo Noir and a complex brooding character piece strung together with the dazzling imagery of humanity and laced through fragile ephemeral happiness. The kind of film that has become a rarity at the box office. Fantastic performances all around.
61 of 99 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?