Tonight for my film quota, I went to a screening of Red White and Blue.
The film opens up following a young lady, Erica. You can tell right away that she’s a troubled girl looking for a distraction from the real world. Erica finds that distraction with every guy she meets in a bar or other random places. She likes having a few hours of her time occupied then she moves on.
While working at a boarding house, Erica meets Nate, an Iraq war veteran, intrigued by her. She has no interest in sleeping with him or even getting to know him but that doesn’t stop him from trying to look out for her. When she loses her job at the home, he finds her a new one and the two form a special bond.
The film veers off to a third main character, Franki, who had a tryst with Erica once before. We see Franki’s day-to-day life trying to make it big with his band and to help his mother who has cancer. Franki seems like a regular guy until the point where he realizes that he got an STD from Erica.
Franki enlists the help of his friends to track her down and question her. Erica is kidnapped and left alone with Franki and his mixed emotions of empathy and rage puts Erica in a dangerous spot.
The result of this has Nate tracking down Erica and looking for revenge on Franki and his friends. Nate’s past of brutality and inhumane torture come out in the process of his search.
This slow burning film is a compelling story of how three lives can intertwine so strongly with an intense aftermath.
Noah Taylor’s violent performance as Nate was chilling and raw. He had a lot of love for Erica but the degree of torture he delivered to her kidnappers made his character turn from nice and humbling to dark and fuckin’ scary.
Amanda Fuller was convincing in her role as the bleak Erica. As much as I wanted to be disgusted with her, I was also painfully sad and wanted her to find the comfort she needed and finally found within Nate. Being with him, she was finally able to have some kind of peace in the world.
Marc Senter, who has a background with playing off-the-wall, eccentric roles (The Lost and Wicked Lake) fit perfectly in the role of Franki. He was weak, simpleminded yet on the verge on cracking. It was his encounter with Erica that took his life into a downward spiral which causes him to snap.
The violence in this film can make a normal person uneasy. Even for myself and all of the bloody gooey gore I watch for breakfast, there were some scenes that made me uncomfortable.
Red, White & Blue is a visceral film that takes love and revenge to a disturbing dark place that shouldn’t be explored by a squeamish audience.