Blue Ruin is a film with few words, shining in some gorgeous cinematography, illuminating an otherwise bleak drama. Macon Blair leads a cast of lesser known actors, playing a reclusive figure seeking revenge. It’s a little No Country For Old Men in its brooding, atmospheric, vengeful tone witha dash of a Jo Nesbø adaptation, as the film puts its protagonist through hell and back as he tries to accomplish a very single minded goal. It’s not always completely engaging and its quietness can make it feel rather insubstantial instead of giving it the weight and tension the drama requires. It’s a film which begins curiously but doesn’t quite open up to reward those expectations. It looks a little better than it feels, not altogether surprising considering director Jeremy Saulnier comes from a background in cinematography but it certainly hints heavily at some even more interesting work to come.
Blue Ruin is out now in the UK and US. Running time 90 mins. Certificate 15 (UK).
Review by David Rank