Blood Father Review: Welcome Back Mel Gibson!
Mel Gibson is our regular B-grade pulpy movie star who kind of never fails to entertain. His last few movies as an actor have been pretty decent except The Expendables 3. I liked Edge of Darkness(2010) which was a slick thriller and more than liked Get the Gringo(2012) which was absurdly fun and entertaining. ‘Blood Father‘, directed by Jean-Francois Richet(of Mesrine fame) has the vibe of Get the Gringo with lots of machismo and action but more than that, it reiterates Mel Gibson’s solid presence in the industry.
Blood Father starts with Lydia (Erin Moriarty) hanging around with her boyfriend Jonah (Diego Luna) who ideals in drugs and has ties to the cartel. The problem starts when Lydia accidentally shoots Jonah in the neck and runs for her life, with both the cops and the cartel members chasing her. She has nowhere to go but her long estranged father. Her father turns out to be John Link (Mel Gibson), who is an ex-convict, working presently as a tattoo artist trying to maintain his sobriety and avoiding the violation of his parole. He is a loner who lives in a trailer parked in the picturesque southwestern landscape where he runs his tattoo parlor. Soon, the daughter meets her dad and they both are on the run with shit-loads of problems chasing them. Link is drowned in guilt over not looking for his missing daughter for so long and that compels him to make it right when she comes around this time, no matter what it takes. What follows is a trashy yet stylish adventure where our father-daughter duo fight off the bad guys.
Jean-Francois Richet, who has shown his flair for violent and messy tone in the Mesrine series doesn’t shy away from nastiness and brutish depiction of cartel action. He has a sense of what needs to be done with a script which is to the point and a veteran like Mr Gibson. The screenplay by Andrea Berloff and Peter Craig (from whose book the film is adapted) moves with a distinct pace and engages the viewer. The screenplay is filled with witty banters and interesting stand-offs which helps the story to not be boring. But all said, I won’t deny the fact that this film would not be what it is, if it wasn’t for Mel Gibson. He has got all the swag to carry Link’s character and does it commendably. With heavy dialogues, dark humor and energetic screen presence, Mel Gibson steals the show for the most part. Erin Moriarty is decent in the support and has a good camaraderie with Mel Gibson. A special mention for William H Macy who gives a good performance as John Link’s only friend.
Blood Father may never get a status which Mel Gibson’s directorial ventures have got or even the critical acclaim but it is a decent addition to Francois’ filmography and Mel Gibson’s potboiler genre films. Don’t sit to watch this film with any expectations; and don’t try to dwell into the artistic value of it and you just might enjoy it as I did.