15 / 2012 / Thriller
Cast: Danny Dyer, Anna Walton
Screenplay: J.K. Amalou / Director: J.K. Amalou
February 24th, 2012 (Theatrical)
February 27th, 2012 (DVD)
Plot: While on her way home from work, Amber (Anna Walton), a young nurse, is car-jacked by Frankie Norton (Danny Dyer). Frankie is a vicious psychopath recently escaped from prison and is looking to flee the country. He takes Amber prisoner in her own car, as they drive around London over the course of one night, while Frankie tries to piece together his next move.
This reviewer seldom ever gets the opportunity to review a film before it’s general release, so when the opportunity came along, it was enthusiastically grabbed with both hands! All well and good you might think, until the realisation suddenly hits as to what has come through the letterbox. The preview DVD is accompanied by some PR gumpf that has none other than Danny Dyer’s name written all over it. That feeling of excitement was tragically all too brief…
Anyone who thinks that’s a little unfair should have a go at sitting through Deviation first: because it’s a mess. Credit where it’s due though; it’s not all Mr. Dyer’s fault. From the get-go, we are treated to some very questionable cinematography which, for the first 5 minutes or so, simply gives us a view of Amber (Walton), from the back, talking on her mobile phone, whilst walking along a London street. This might have been acceptable, had the camera decided to survey her clothing or the phone she was using just to give us some indication of what this character is about. But no. It’s just her, from a fixed angle, having three simultaneous conversations – one of which is from her work, who can’t decide if they need her to come back or not – thus making her walk back on herself twice. By the end of the sequence, you’ve lost all care for the character and she hasn’t even been abducted yet!
Once she is though, the whole film then plummets to depths of absurdity that you didn’t think were possible! Frankie is less of a raving psychopath and more of a confused and love-starved man-child. If his criminal activities are as well renowned as the highly contrived breaking-news-on-all-radio-stations would have you believe, why does he only restrain his victim with a single cable tie attached to the join of a headrest; and why doesn’t she then simply pull it off!? There also appears to be a severe lack of a police presence searching for this supposed mad man…
These and many other questions are likely to annoy and plague you as the running time creeps along like a clock working at half-speed. That and the performances, which are bland at best; although Anna Walton’s final scene does manage to breathe some much-needed genuine emotion. But by that point, your senses will have become too dulled to notice.
Extended commentary for this review can be found here.
Kyle Buxton is an independent freelance film reviewer and blogger
Be sure to check out hid blog at: Reel Lighthouse – containing movie reviews, as well as other occasional film-related insights.