Review: The Snowtown Murders

The Snowtown Murders

Note: Potential spoiler below. The ending is discussed but not in detail.

Next to nothing in this film works, that’s just the sad fact. I will discuss them with as much brevity as humanly possible and brevity would’ve helped this film. Typically when I’m discussing pace it refers to certain scenes and shots being truncated and rendered more quickly to allow the totality of the film to flow better in this film the first issue you have is that there are scenes of little to no narrative necessity or consequence that not only are allowed to occur but at times repeat themselves (see the bull sessions about stomping out pedophiles).

Characters are very poorly introduced and the population of the tale is too large. Some of the struggles of this film can be attributed to attempting to remain true to the real-life story upon which its based but not excused. A huge cadre combined with indirectly acquired information and at times implied incidents is not an easy road map to success. The protagonist in the tale is a bit too passive such that it would’ve almost been better told from a different perspective especially since it became clear who the perpetrator would be though the film took a while to formally announce it. The score designed to be grating ends up being just annoying. The film also seems to show where it ought not and have restraint where it ought not. This tact adds importance to the MacGuffin and exacerbates the delusional vigilante angle that’s really just a cover for psychosis. Granted that’s important to convey but once demonstrated that needn’t be reinforced.

The film despite all its massive flaws still keeps on a decent trajectory in terms of narrative build but then meanders irrevocably when it should be building towards some sort of concrete conclusion but instead decides it’s shown us enough horrors such that enough is enough, and rather than finding an artistic way to convey the deserved downfall of these people they’ll just give us the information in cards. This is information I could’ve acquired in a web search but I’d have preferred to have seen it now that my time’s already been wasted. Finish the job! Give me the epilogue visually. It’s not quite the slap in the face that the end of The Devil Inside is but considering the start this one had the totality may have been worse.

Furthermore, as if that wasn’t bad enough, I really needed convincing in this film and I didn’t get anything to sway me. I thought of This is England while watching this film which has perhaps an even more vile ‘charismatic antagonist’ but both in writing and performance is far more believable as someone who would be followed perhaps even against one’s will. It seems that things occur and are shown here just because they actually happened and no thought was given to narrative propriety and almost seems deliberately sensationalistic at times and never interesting.

2/10

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2014 BAM Award Considerations – October

I decided that with the plethora of BAM Awards-related post towards the end of 2013 and the start of this year it was best to wait to the end of this month before officially recommencing the process.

I will post these lists towards the end of the month to allow for minimal updates. By creating a new post monthly, and creating massive combo files offline, it should make the process easier for me and more user-friendly for you, the esteemed reader. Enjoy.

Eligible Titles

Dracula Untold
Hellaware
Summer of Blood
Mercy
Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Annabelle
Ouija
St. Vincent
The Day the Series Stopped
In the Heart
Abuse of Weakness
Moebius
1,000 Times Good Night
Fury
For a Woman
Cannibal
Finn
The Judge
Gone Girl

Best Picture

St. Vincent
Fury
Finn
The Judge
Gone Girl

Best Foreign Film

1,000 Times Good Night
Finn

Best Documentary

The Day the Series Stopped

Most Overlooked Film

As intimated in my Most Underrated announcement this year, I’ve decided to make a change here. Rather than get caught up in me vs. the world nonsense and what a film’s rating is on an aggregate site, the IMDb or anywhere else, I want to champion smaller, lesser-known films. In 2011 with the selection of Toast this move was really in the offing. The nominees from this past year echo that fact. So here, regardless of how well-received something is by those who’ve seen it, I’ll be championing indies and foreign films, and the occasional financial flop from a bigger entity.

Dracula Untold
Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
1,000 Times Good Night
Finn

Best Director
St. Vincent
Fury
Finn
The Judge
Gone Girl

Best Actress

Kim van Kooten In the Heart
Isabelle Huppert Abuse of Weakness
Juliette Binoche 1,000 Times Good Night
Mélanie Thierry For a Woman
Olimpia Melinte Cannibal
Rosamund Pike Gone Girl

Best Actor

Luke Evans Dracula Untold
Bill Murray St. Vincent
Koen de Graeve In the Heart
Jae-hyun Jo Moebius
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau 1,000 Times Good Night
Robert Downey, Jr. The Judge
Ben Affleck Gone Girl

Best Supporting Actress

Melissa McCarthy St. Vincent
Eun-woo Lee Moebius
Vera Farmiga The Judge

Best Supporting Actor

Youg-ju Seo Moebius
Logan Lerman Fury
Jan Decleir Finn
Robert Duvall The Judge

Best Performance by a Young Actress in a Leading Role

Lauren Canny 1,000 Times Good Night

Best Performance by a Young Actor in a Leading Role

Chandler Riggs Mercy
Ed Oxenbould Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Jaeden Lieberher St. Vincent
Mels van der Hoeven Finn

Best Performance by a Young Actress in a Supporting Role

Emma Tremblay The Judge
Adrianna Cramer Curtis 1,000 Times Good Night
Kerris Dorsey Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Best Performance by a Young Actor in a Supporting Role

Dario Barosso St. Vincent
Art Parkinson Dracula Untold
Joel Courtney Mercy

Best Cast

St. Vincent
Moebius
1,000 Times Good Night
Fury
Finn
The Judge
Gone Girl
Dracula Untold
Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Best Youth Ensemble

1,000 Times Good Night
Finn
Mercy
Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Best Original Screenplay

St. Vincent
Moebius
1,000 Times Good Night
Fury
Finn
The Judge

Best Adapted Screenplay

Gone Girl
Dracula Untold
Alexander and the Terrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Best Score

Fury
Finn
Gone Girl
Dracula Untold

Best Editing

St. Vincent
Moebius
Fury
Finn
The Judge

Best Sound Editing/Mixing

Fury
Finn
The Judge
Gone Girl
Dracula Untold

Best Cinematography

St. Vincent
Moebius
1,000 Times Good Night
Fury
Finn
The Judge
Gone Girl

Best Art Direction

St. Vincent
Moebius
Cannibal
Finn
Gone Girl

Best Costume Design

St. Vincent
Moebius
Fury
Cannibal
Finn
Dracula Untold

Best Makeup

St. Vincent
In the Heart
Moebius
1,000 Times Good Night
Fury
The Judge
Gone Girl

Best Visual Effects

Dracula Untold

Best (Original) Song

St. Vincent
In the Heart
1,000 Times Good Night
Finn
The Judge