Director: Stefan Ruzowitzky
Eric Bana carries Deadfall; for his character is the only interesting thing happening in this blood-stained snowy thriller.
Now depending on what you may think of Bana as an actor, then the above statement may be the lone deciding factor if you want to take-in this 95 minute excursion.
When Bana and his sister, Olivia Wilde, have to separate and hideout in the wilderness – where houses are miles apart – they both end up crossing paths with the locals. Bana, though composed, is ruthless and shows seldom remorse, as he tries to avoid drawing attention to himself after pulling off a lucrative heist (which we don’t see). He doesn’t take any chances and has a shoot first/ask questions later mentality. Wilde on the other hand, is just a beginner in the criminal world. She uses her physical attributes to hitch a ride with Charlie Hunnam – a local guy who just spent a few years in prison after getting caught up in a boxing scandal at the 2008 Olympics. Having no true direction, and not too keen about seeing his parents (Sissy Spacek and Kris Kristofferson), Hunnam hangs with Wilde as they shack up in a local hotel while the blizzard passes over.
Another subplot introduced revolves around a local deputy played by actress Kate Mara. Mara’s not taken too seriously by the Sheriff (Treat Williams sighting), and therefore, is left out in the cold (no pun) when the manhunt for the murderous Bana commences.
Despite having a decent roster of performers, this flick is only exciting when Bana is on the screen. Hunnam’s character arc is a bust (kind of a poor man’s Channing Tatum); the forming bond between Hunnam and Wilde is lame, save for Wilde showing more skin than she did in Cowboys & Aliens; you won’t care about Mara not getting any respect as law enforcement official; and it’s not until the very end where Spacek is allowed to display her talents. And Kristofferson is just there – which begs the question of why have him? That being said, when Bana does interact with others, his persona enhances a scene. But there are just too many moronic technical quirks and screenplay sequences that just fail to mesh together. And the climactic scene, though quasi-suspenseful thanks to Bana’s character, it just seems a bit foolish as the filmmakers took the easy way out to end this.
Overall, Deadfall is an average watch that has some engaging moments. Yet a good portion of it seems under-developed and poorly chopped together in the editing room.