FEATURE FILM REVIEW
The sudden death of an author's wife brings his three ex-best friends from high school to his aid.
THERE AIN'T NO PARTY like a senior graduation party! That's usually the truth, but for these four best friends, this party will be a game-changer, but not in the best of ways. Redville begins as if it's positioning itself to be a coming of age story, and in a sense, it is, except that it skips over the twenty years that would usually make one such tale. The flashback sequence ends with two of the friends getting in a fight over a girl, and Tony ( Paul Sacchetti ) vows to never speak to his former friends again. We're expected to believe this is normal behavior for Tony, and things will be fine, except we are wrong. Tony keeps his word and twenty years later, he is still holding a grudge.
THE THREE FRIENDS REACH OUT TO TONY, THAT DOESN'T WORK OUT SO WELL
After the fake-out intro that makes you think this film is going one way, it changes and becomes something totally different. We briefly meet Tony's wife before she dies in a car crash, and quickly find out she wasn't a perfect person. Led by Julian ( Scott Thompson ), the three friends try and reach out to Tony. That doesn't work so well, so the three, again led by Julian, attempt an intervention at Tony's home. Julian is deep in politics and seeking reelection, so we're instantly shown he is the social problem solver of the group. When Tony doesn't answer his door, Julian steps inside.
Now is when things really begin happening, and Redville is not shy to show us what kind of story is really being told. Julian finds a man dead on Tony's floor, and as Tony comes storming out of another room flapping around with a gun, we find out the dead man isn't really dead at all. After a brief exchange describing who the man is, and after all of Tony's old friends come rushing in, the man gets control of the gun and wants the police to be called. It's a desperate situation that Sean Cranston captures well as Redville inches even closer to the big dilemma of the film. As Tony's friends rally around him, they get control of the gun, and in a moment of sheer instinct, Tony's prisoner is shot dead.
I COULDN'T HELP BUT WONDER WHY JOE'S BOSS WAS SUCH A DICK
This fatal incident brings the old friends together again as they decide what to do with the body, and also offers a reason for all these guys to be pals again. We find out more backstory, and why Tony had captured the dead man. We also find out that real friends will be there when you need them, even if you don't ask. But I couldn't help but wonder what would have happened if Julian hadn't interfered? The murder just may not have happened at all. I also couldn't help but wonder why Joe's boss was such a dick?
THERE'S SOME GREAT WRITING AND A FLARE FOR THE CHAOTIC
Redville was a much better movie than I thought it would be. There's some great writing and a flare for the chaotic to go along with the story of friendship and, cough cough, murder. I really enjoyed the campaign videos and the slightly over-exaggerated expressions of youth. Or maybe they're not over-exaggerated at all; memory is a funny thing. But one thing I won't forget is that this was a great do-it-yourself movie and a reminder of an expression I use all the time. The calvary ain't coming. You want to make a film, then go out and make it, don't put it off due to money. Redville is a film that is much more than the sum of its parts, and that's all that really counts.
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