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Movie Reviews Dead Man Down

Dead Man Down

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A true case of bad timing, DEAD MAN DOWN (2013) starring Colin Farrell, Noomi Rapace, and Dominic Cooper was released the same weekend as OZ THE GREAT AND POWERFUL. Unfortunately positioned to fight each other for the box office take, both films suffered during opening weekend as audiences found themselves compelled to choose between the two popular new releases, ultimately splitting their entertainment dollar.

In DEAD MAN DOWN, we join our main character Victor after he's already managed to infiltrate a New York gang with the single-minded plan of avenging his wife and daughter's murder. Surprised by an unexpected mutual attraction, Victor and his neighbor Beatrice are inexplicably drawn to each other through their emotional pain and individual need for revenge.

Moving at a slow pace, this film allows audiences to continually evaluate the plot structure and character development. Unfortunately, this movie doesn't hold up well to repeated scrutiny. Many of the subplots seem meaningless and somewhat trivial as we watch Victor and eatrice struggle to keep their heads above water and not drown from their combined grief.

I found DEAD MAN DOWN quite dark—figuratively and literally. Obviously filmed in the shadows to make a point, our antihero is obviously living on the edge. Fighting to decide if his energies are best spent building a future or exacting his revenge, Victor struggles forward. As the movie drones on, we unfortunately care less and less about Victor and Beatrice's choices. We might have had a little more vested interest if we had known the characters prior to their individual tragedies.

I couldn't help but notice that actor Colin Farrell doesn't seem to ever age. Directed by Niels Arden Opely, Rated R, 118 mins, Mystery, Suspense. ** 2 stars out of 5.

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Reviewed by Lynne Martin March 23, 2013
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