Blame

  • Year:2010
  • Rating:MA
  • Director:Michael Henry
  • Cast:Sophie Lowe, Damian De Montemas, Kestie Morassi, Ashley Zukerman
  • Release Date:June 16, 2011
  • Distributor:PackScreen
  • Running time:89 minutes
  • Film Worth:$11.00
  • FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

Aided by an excellent cast and terrific premise, this had the potential to be an engaging nail-biter but unfortunately ends up predictable and contrived.

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This tense psychodrama starring a handsome young Australian cast has spent the last few months touring film festivals around the world and, accompanied by a strong poster courtesy of hip graphics company The Penguin Empire, is finally set for release nationally.

The film opens with music teacher Bernard (Damian De Montemas) driving to his isolated home, where he is promptly ambushed by a group of five intruders wearing masks. Without a word, they blindfold him and force-feed him a large dose of sleeping pills. After he falls unconscious, they remove all traces of themselves from the home, fake a suicide note, and leave the property. Of course, not long after their initial getaway, they realise that they've forgotten one last piece of incriminating evidence, and return to find that their murder plot has already gone awry, causing the group to turn on one another. 

While Blame opens strongly - the initial sequence with the five conspirators dressed in masks and suits chasing down their victim is visually striking - the film quickly becomes predictable, which isn't helped by an increasingly slow pace following the tense beginning. The young cast is left to flounder, with Simon Stone in particular reduced to shouting the word "fuck" repeatedly. Sophie Lowe and Kestie Morassi are given the most to work with during the battle of wits that follows, but are left stranded by a script that fails to flow organically, forcing plot contrivances and a series of unlikely reversals.

The cast does its best, but their characters are reduced to functions of a predictable plot.  It's a shame, as there is real potential within both the story and the abilities of the actors to have created something far more engaging. A tighter film with fewer characters and less waiting around may have been more successful in maintaining pace and suspense for the audience.

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