Reviews written by registered user
|2 reviews in total|
Fantastic film. Really tight action thriller. Very well plotted, and very well executed. I saw another reviewer complain because it was not as action packed as the publicity misled him to believe. It just doesn't feel like an American action flick because it doesn't have famous international stars with overgrown muscles saying lapidary lines every time they shoot a bad guy. I love Die Hard too, don't get me wrong, but this is just a different kind of animal. This is reminiscent of Die Hard only in the high concept (one man against lots of bad guys in a confined environment); the tone is much more realistic and gritty. It's not a shoot them all in which they never run out of bullets either, nor a martial arts extravaganza, but action packed it is: it gets relentless. The action is just grounded. The hero here, or anti-hero, maybe, is not the best shot on earth, and is not stronger or a better fighter than anyone else, nor has any special "movie hero" skills. He's really human; he's just more desperate. But that's what makes the film so raw. The stakes feel real. The fights will have you twisting on your seat, not cheering as the hero makes mincemeat of anyone in his path a la Taken. It is not a wish-fulfillment ride, like most Hollywood action flicks, but precisely for that reason it is a very intense ride. It's really gripping. The plot devices (son in danger, etc) don't come out too cheesy and the actors make their characters very believable. The complexity of the plot is easy to follow despite the lack of expository dialog spoon-fed to the audience. We see what the hero sees, realize what he realizes. We realize indeed how bad the odds are for him and we wonder what could he possibly do, as the situation gets worse and worse. We understand the playground and are challenged to guess how is he going to use it. We get to know all the other characters and why they are desperate too, rising the stakes, and we keep peeling them off in layers, unveiling twists and double crossings in an exercise of one upmanship. They don't round it up with a beautiful bow in the end nor every little subplot is tied up with a saccharine sweet epilogue. It is abrupt enough, not complacent with us, while still delivering the required closure. In my view this just adds to the general grit. I highly recommend this film. It felt fresh. Not recognizing every actor also helped make it feel real. The modern day french setting with immigrants from everywhere also helped provide separation from the US or UK set cop dramas that we are used to watch here in the US. Sorry to rant. I just watched it on Netflix and felt compelled to come to IMDb and learn more about it (I had never heard of it before), and then to write this review.
I really enjoyed this hard to classify film. I have only seen this type of humor associated to male-led comedies, and I think it is quite bold to approach it from a female perspective -- and without apologizing for it. I'm giving it ten stars for how ballsy it is and for doing something so different from what is out there. I also enjoyed that they were able to portray the world of adult entertainment neither condoning it nor falling into preachy sanctimoniousness or prejudiced clichés. In that regard, it reminded me of Boogie Nights; it pokes fun at its subjects, but never in a mean-spirited way and indeed, in Bliss, more often than not the joke is on the outsider. Delivering hard laughs and, at the same time, portraying compelling characters that will make us care is a hard balancing act, but I think Bliss succeeds at both things. Its in-your-face humor has nothing to envy to the crassest Farrelly brothers' flicks, but at the same time it shows a true indie sensibility in the leading character's journey to grow comfortable with her own sexuality. I really hope this film gets the exposure it deserves.