Cinematic Releases: Blood Ties

A star studded cast headlines the limited release of Blood Ties.

"I'm James Caan. Can you
please tell me what
I'm doing here and why is
your massive penis colored blue?"
A criminal tale of two brothers, each on their own side of the law, hit theaters last week with little to no effect. Unlike We Own The Night (a very similar movie), Blood Ties never hits a dramatic stride that this star studded cast could have easily delivered. Instead, it just lingers around for over two hours of sheer boredom making audiences wait for a totally played out finale while a grade A cast brings nothing to the table that we haven't seen before. 

There is a thing called slow burn and there is another called no direction. Sadly, Blood Ties is the latter, making dire use of Clive Owen, Marion Cotillard, Billy Crudup, James Caan, Mila Kunis, Lily Taylor, Noah Emmerich, and Zoe Saldana. Yes, that's right. This is a mind blowing conglomeration of reputable actors that can and have offered excellent performances in the past. At the behest of this viewer, none of them are given the time or space to make the best of a script that could have been stellar under the reigns of better, more dynamic direction. 

"Billy, I told you.
I don't go that way. Now unhand me!"
Yet, the absolute attention to period specific detail is the saving grace of Blood Ties. Everything from the cars, hair styles, costumes and set design is so spot on, you feel like you've been sucked back to a time when the radio played actual music and vehicles were still nice to look at. And the soundtrack is non-formulaic, offering up a sweet mix of verifiable seventies hits that you haven't heard time and time again in every other film about this era. Still, it can't save the near train wreck of this less than enjoyable release. 

If you have time or money to waste, pay full admission for Blood Ties. You might enjoy yourself knowing that every actor is under performing and forgetting to hide their foreign accents in a movie that could so easily have been one hundred times better had the script gotten as much love as the perfectly placed set pieces and period perfect hair cuts. 

-Chris George