Sunday, May 15, 2011

1565 - Defendor

A friend of mine is a reader for several of the different funding agencies here in Canada, and he mentioned having read and liked an early draft of this.  That combined with a bunch of actors, both famous and local, that I love - my only regret was I didn't get a chance to support this while it was still in the theatre. 
It's the story of a mentally challenged man (fetal-alcohol syndrome) who is convinced that a man named Captain Industry killed his prostitute mother when he was a child, and so he's become a vigilante known as the Defendor (NOT Defender!).  What surprised me most about this film was that it would have been so easy to just go with the dark comedy, but there's some goddamn heartbreaking moments here - some real harsh stuff.  It's stylized, but there feels like there's an honesty to how it all transpires throughout.  There's a lot going on but somehow the tone of this film works for it completely.  It's not cheesy, it's not shlocky.  It takes some superhero genre stuff and plays with it in an interesting way that fits emotionally and dramatically as well for a guy that's real.  Woody Harrelson is simply fantastic in this role, funny, endearing, heartbreaking.  It's a film worth seeing regardless, but if absolutely nothing else it's a film worth seeing for his performance.  For anyone who trashes Canadian cinema, give it a check out - if we made more films like this we would certainly be in a better situation with our film industry.  It's dark, yet accessible, dark and yet I think it would play well to a wide audience.  Go.  See.  It.
DefendorDefendor [Blu-ray]Defendor [Blu-ray]  Defendor [Blu-ray]

1 comment:

Screenwriting Spinster said...

I really liked this movie. Saw it in the theatres during the Top 10 Canadian films of that year. It was also on my list as one of the best. I really liked the realistic tone of it and the humor because it came off naturally. And the look of the film is first rate. I, too, wish Canada made more films like this. We have the talent to do so.