Skip to main content

DARKLAND review


2017
Directed by: Fenar Ahmad
Starring: Dar Salim
Country: Denmark


A motion picture about requital that puts aside its comeuppance for as long as possible, DARKLAND highlights a deep dive into character that revenge tales rarely allow. Fenar Ahmads' disturbing follow-up to Γ†kte vare does deliver on its promise of a masked vigilante, but not before exploring all the loss, guilt and even internal prejudice driving a well-to-do doctor Zaid (Dar Salim) down a path of both self-destruction and violence against his own people.

Zaid, the child of Iraqi migrants, has had it great in Denmark. He's an all-around happy guy. A well-regarded specialist and an eager father living in the midst of the more elite classes of white European culture; he's moved far from his parents neighborhood and its nearby Arab gangsters. His more youthful sibling Yasin wasn't so fortunate, using petty theft and low-level drug dealing just to remain above water. He turns to Zaid after getting himself in trouble with his boss, a neighborhood dealer who answers to a higher power. The good doctor needs no piece of his infant sibling's way of life, regardless of the fact that it's only a temporary loan to get him out of harm's way. This is the life and the group Zaid abandoned. Turning his back on Yasin is what causes this young mans early demise.

The splendor of Ahmad's film is in his use of time. He takes into account a moderate, efficient plunge into brutality. Zaid is offered time to ponder his mind-boggling guilt and franticness as he gets to know some fairly ridiculous individuals. Endeavoring to balance the life that has been taken from him with the one he now has. DARKLAND is a story where misfortune is genuinely felt, one where preference and social self-loathing are conveyed to the surface through showdown and one where the savagery is difficult to witness; not on account of its realism, but rather in view of the toll it takes on the spirit of a man committed to sparing lives.

Anyone who thought Christopher Nolan's BATMAN was a "gritty" or "grounded" take on revenge-seeking hero's needs to see DARKLAND, it makes THE DARK KNIGHT look like BATMAN '66.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

THE True Bromance Film Podcast - Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Episode 208 - Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

We like to keep up with the latest and greatest in the film universe so for this episode we're dialing up Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. In a world where superhero films saturate the market, can an animated feature distinguish itself from the pack?

MOVIES DISCUSSED THIS WEEK:

A Fistful of Dollars, The Favourite, Skyscraper, The Meg, RBG, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Searching, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse


LAFF review A CROOKED SOMEBODY

2107
Directed By: Trevor White
Starring: Rich Sommer, Clifton Collins Jr., Joanne Froggatt, Amanda Crew, Ed Harris
Producers: Jason Potash, Paul Finkel, Tim White, Wayne L. Rogers Sales: CAA
Ambition is a powerful drug that can inspire positive change. It can force you outside of the comfortable boxes you place yourself in. It asks you to stretch and reimagine not only the person you are but the person you could be. Most great men and women have a deep relationship with what they see as their purpose. This is a personality trait never driven by or limited to the pragmatic and there in lies the problem. Logic be damned, when a sense of determination is your north star. 
Michael Vaughn (Sommer) is an ambitious psychic on the road promoting a book that no one is buying. Using parlor tricks and audience plants Vaughn helps people "connect" with loved ones who have passed on. Somewhere in between a traveling preacher and a low-rent John Edwards he sees himself as a man destined …

SONG OF SOLOMON Review

Exorcism films do not begin and end with William Friedkin's THE EXORCIST. With entries as varied as BEETLEJUICE, CONSTANTINE, and THE RITE, the exorcism sub-genre of horror films is far more diverse than many immediately recognize.  

With THE SONG OF SOLOMON director Stephen Brio has added a unique take on the possession movie. In his film, the Catholic church attempts to save the soul of Mary (Jessica Cameron) who appears to have been possessed after witnessing her father's brutal suicide.

Mary is off camera while her father takes his own life. In a scene that could play as a confessional or an accusation, the family's patriarch lists off the reasons why he is being forced to use his knife on Mary and himself. He details how they were a good, loving family and he can't understand why she is accusing him of abuse. Using demonic control as a metaphor for trauma survival is something so natural, I can't believe it's not woven into every film of this kind.

Jessic…