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Blue Ruin (2013)

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A mysterious outsider's quiet life is turned upside down when he returns to his childhood home to carry out an act of vengeance. Proving himself an amateur assassin, he winds up in a brutal fight to protect his estranged family.


Jeremy Saulnier


Jeremy Saulnier
3,660 ( 52)
8 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Macon Blair ... Dwight
Ydaiber Orozco ... Amanda (Rental Houser Mother)
Ronald Sarcos Ronald Sarcos ... Eric (Rental House Father)
Dani Santiago Dani Santiago ... Daughter #1
Adrian Santiago Adrian Santiago ... Daughter #2
George Fredericks George Fredericks ... Metal Detector Couple
Elizabeth Fredericks Elizabeth Fredericks ... Metal Detector Couple
Sidné Anderson ... Officer Eddy
Brooke Bennett Brooke Bennett ... Smoking Girl
Ellen Danaher Ellen Danaher ... Pawn Shop Clerk
Katie Kramer Katie Kramer ... Supermarket Cashier
Shelley Illmensee ... SUV Driver
Kevin Kolack ... Teddy Cleland
Stacy Rock ... Hope Cleland (Cousin)
Eve Plumb ... Kris Cleland (Sister)


A mysterious outsider's quiet life is turned upside down when he returns to his childhood home to carry out an act of vengeance. Proving himself an amateur assassin, he winds up in a brutal fight to protect his estranged family.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Revenge comes home


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody violence, and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »


Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »


USA | France



Release Date:

9 July 2014 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Untitled Revenge Project See more »

Filming Locations:

Virginia, USA See more »


Box Office


$1,066,167 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$32,608, 27 April 2014, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$258,113, 22 June 2014
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Jeremy Saulnier has a follow up to this movie - Green Room (2015). It premiered at the 2015 Cannes Film Fest in the Directors Fortnight series and got a theatrical run in 777 theaters on May 13th, 2016. See more »


When Dwight stops at the diner to inspect the parked cars, he tests the handle of the Chevrolet truck. The door is supposed to be locked, he goes on to bust the window out. However, when he tests the handle, the door opens a little bit, thus revealing that it wasn't locked in the first place. See more »


[first lines]
Officer Eddy: [wakes Dwight by knocking softly on his car door] Get ready. I'd like you to come into the station.
Dwight: I... Is it about the house. 'Cuz I could...
Officer Eddy: Dwight, sweetheart, I'll explain. Okay? Just come with me.
See more »


References The A-Team (1983) See more »


Only We Know
Written by Yancy Peterson
Performed by Bulletproof Moose feat. Fifty Grand
Instrumental by Suicide Studios Amun
Produced by Les Lentz
See more »

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User Reviews

A great suspense thriller on a shoestring budget
20 February 2015 | by rblenheimSee all my reviews

One of the strongest achievements in recent years in independent cinema is "Blue Ruin". It's brilliantly written and directed by Jeremy Saulnier who just a few years ago was making his own amateur monster movies with his friends, some of whom were involved in this inspired revenge thriller that is the antithesis of the usual commercial revenge thriller.

Shot on a less-than-shoestring budget, it stars Macon Blair (best friend of Saulnier since childhood) as Dwight, an apparent homeless drifter housing a grudge against a convict about to be released from prison whom he feels had murdered his parents. Dwight is obviously unaccustomed to violence (he's never fired a gun) and, as in the best of the Noir classics, makes one bad decision that plunges him way over his head into a harrowing murder plot that'll keep viewers on the edge of their seats.

What makes this film so unique is how its suspense comes from slow, quiet inexorable tension punctuated with a few acts of violence that seem authentic, bearing none of the sensationalism or tired clichés one gets in garbage like "Taken" and its tiresome ilk. The triumph of "Blue Ruin" is even greater when one realizes that its director used his own family house and his family car making it, and managed such a height of verisimilitude by using cinema in its purest form. Here an 'amateur' outdoes the Hollywood pros in making a superb virtually perfect thriller that won't easily be forgotten.

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