Review: THE DEMOLISHER
There’s a level of accomplishment that very few films are able to pull off: being able to be striking and effective without having to rely on continual dialogue. These days, the typical audience member tends to put their money and attention towards films that are fast-paced and have a lack of room to breathe, and to be completely honest, it’s both upsetting and unfortunate. When films come along and put a mood or tone above the typicality of what usually gets put in front of you, it’s a special moment, and one that should be celebrated. It’s with that refreshing approach that we’re given Gabriel Carrer’s THE DEMOLISHER, a film that is able to bring you in for an aggressive and brutal, yet at times quiet ride.
Following a trio of characters: Bruce (Ry Barrett, THE DROWNSMAN, KINGDOM COME) a man full of rage and on a quest for revenge over a violent act that left his wife unable to walk; Samantha (Tianna Nori, BITE, CLEAN BREAK), Bruce’s wife, a woman who was a cop but now relies on her husband to take care of her; Marie (Jessica Vano, BERKSHIRE COUNTY), a young woman who gets caught in the middle of Bruce and his quest for revenge and finds herself running for her life. It’s a great setup that is instantly able to not only bring you into the film, but make you completely on edge and enthralled throughout the entire film. We care about all three of the characters and rightfully so, the performances given by Barrett, Nori and Vano are all impressive as hell, each of them doing such an excellent job breathing life into a trio of damaged characters and the violence that brings them into each other’s paths.
Playing an equally important role in the film, is the city and landscape in which Bruce exacts his brutal revenge, using the pain and anger he feels over his wife’s unfortunate injury as a catalyst, a fuel to find thugs and beat them to a bloody pulp. Bruce is a force of nature, akin to The Shape in John Carpenter’s HALLOWEEN, a walking figure of rage, and it’s refreshing to follow him on his vengeful path, which becomes more encompassing when Marie is caught in the middle of a beating and finds a necklace that belongs to Bruce, making her be his prime target. We’re scared for Marie, because at that point, we’ve already seen what Bruce is capable of; For Bruce, it’s a quest to get the necklace back, as it holds special value to his relationship and almost holds a place in head that makes him feel close to how life was before his wife’s accident. It’s a force of nature coming at a young woman, taking out anyone in its way, anger personified in a damaged and angry man.
The characters are rich, the cinematography from Martin Buzora is wide and beautiful, and combined with the Glen Nicholls score, THE DEMOLISHER feels like a missing Carpenter film, in the best of ways. It’s a scary and intense ride, a testament to Gabriel Carrer’s abilities as a director.The tone of the film is ominous, with scenes filled with Bruce walking in full protective swat-like armor, making his way through the streets, thirsty for blood and violence, and that tone and vibe of the film is made perfect by Carrer’s great directorial style, combined with a cocktail of violence and heart, anger and devotion.