Frank (Ray Winstone) is confined to a residential home, stricken with Alzheimer's - past, present and future steadily disintegrating. Then one day, James (Jim Sturgess) appears, wanting to ...
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Frank (Ray Winstone) is confined to a residential home, stricken with Alzheimer's - past, present and future steadily disintegrating. Then one day, James (Jim Sturgess) appears, wanting to re-connect with a father who no longer knows him. James springs Frank from the home and the pair go on the run. As their haphazard journey unfolds - funny, violent and tragic by turns - the present merges with imperfect memories of the past and fact with fiction and we begin to realize that nothing is quite what it seems. ASHES itself defies neat categorization; part road movie, part psychological thriller; part contemporary film noir, but all beautifully shot and with a grimly satisfying twist.Written by
Greg (from the DVD jacket)
ASHES is an unusual little thriller, shot in the Isle of Man, which I thought came across as bad taste a bit. It stars a headlining Ray Winstone as an Alzheimer's sufferer who's broken out of a nursing home by his son Jim Sturgess. The two then go on a road movie of sorts while events of the past continue to influence the present.
This is a fairly difficult film to enjoy, as it has a slow pace and the characters are resolutely unlikeable from beginning to end. And that's from somebody who likes Winstone as an actor, but I wasn't sure about his character here; I ended up laughing at a couple of his violent outbursts rather than being moved by them.
The thriller aspects of the storyline are rather murky and the dodgy camera-work in the flashbacks also spoils things a bit. The ending I found unsatisfactory too. Sturgess seems one dimensional throughout and it's left to supporting actors like Luke Evans, Jodie Whittaker, and Lesley Manville to hold the fort.
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