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Author Topic: Heartless (Philip Ridley, 2009)  (Read 1109 times)

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Heartless (Philip Ridley, 2009)
« on: 30 Jun 2010 - 10:12 »

Got around to seeing this last night. Bearing in mind that this is only the third feature Ridley has made during his 20-year career, and given that his debut THE REFLECTING SKIN is an underrated gem of the highest order, I was really optimistic about this. I wasn’t disappointed. The film follows the plight of Jamie, a likeable young man with a huge confidence issue caused by a disfiguring, heart-shaped birthmark that covers most of the left side of his face. Although Jamie’s father passed away some time before he has a strong relationship with his kindly mother and older brother, who has a family of his own.

Jamie and his mother live in a rough part of East London: a place where “hoody culture” has hit unbearable levels. The local youths, clad in hooded tops and demon masks, have taken to attacking passers-by with Molotov cocktails. Where Jamie had been a passive presence in his community, a shattering personal tragedy forces him to investigate the street urchins further, with devastating—and altogether supernatural—consequences.

HEARTLESS isn’t as good as THE REFLECTING SKIN: Ridley’s debut had a lyrical quality and was almost flawless the director’s latest film is a little more inconsistent. Much of the imagery in REFLECTING SKIN was ambiguous and open to interpretation, whereas in HEARTLESS Ridley’s use of symbolism is a little more heavy-handed. Don’t get me wrong, HEARTLESS is still a great film that works on a number of levels and something that stands heads and shoulders above the majority of other genre films of the past five years.

The Blu-ray is 1080i. Picture quality in daylight and well-lit scenes is excellent but darker sequences are pretty horrible. The sounds is great – a nice, thumping DTS track that’s sure to wake up the neighbours. Extras include a commentary by Ridley, music videos and little else.
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