Blood - Blu-ray Review

'could have been something new but instead looks like Midsomer Murders At The Seaside'

The surprisingly boring Blood goes all out for British angst where American heart-rending would normally be and comes up with a pretty empty police drama, which could have been something new but instead looks like Midsomer Murders At The Seaside.

Perhaps that's not entirely fair to Nick Murphy's film, which, as shot by George Richmond, does occasionally look rather good. Taking place mainly at night, the chilly colours attempt to creep under your skin, as late traffic lights blink and blackness rolls across sandy bays. If it looks moody then that's because it is but it's also a bizarrely empty malaise, like a teenager railing against the world for no reason.

The saving graces that make Blood not a complete bust are Mark Strong and Brian Cox, who crackle in a minute amount of scenes together, albeit one in which Strong begins with a rather unconvincing attempt to critique the gardening ('is that... winter jasmine?').

A shame then that those two titans of growling aren't the star attractions. Those roles are left instead to Paul Bettany and Stephen Graham, who make for the least convincing on-screen brothers for quite some time. Even if they were physically similar, each conspires to put in an overblown performance which veers dangerously close to parody on occasion. Like making a cup of tea with stock instead of water, the result is so strong, mixed and downright odd that it blows out anything there that was good to begin with. Bettany and Graham don't so much carry the film as drag it along through wet sand; stumbling, shouting, screaming as they go.

Just when you thought we couldn't get any more emotionally angsty, a wronged Mother character (Sandra Voe) turns up, cranking us even more against the lead pair, who weren't that likeable to begin with. Meanwhile, the plot gets on with doing not much apart from repeat things that are happening or need to happen for said pair to stay safe, as Murphy's film winds down to something that inevitably cannot possibly end well for the majority of characters.

By Sam Turner. Sam is editor of Film Intel, and can usually be found behind a keyboard with a cup of tea. He likes entertaining films and dislikes the other kind. He's on , Twitter and several places even he doesn't yet know about.

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