RED, WHITE AND BLUE
Directed by Simon Rumley
Written by Simon Rumley
Starring Noah Taylor, Amanda Fuller and Marc Senter
Set in Texas, the film opens as Erica (Fuller) enters a bar and catches the eye of Franki (Senter). Erica joins Franki and his friends to play pool and after some boozing, she ends up going to Franki’s place where three of the four guys have sex with her. This is followed by many more scenes of Erica having liasons with different men, all strangers. She doesn’t seem too concerned about using protection and tries to persuade one of her conquests to not use a condom, but he insists. A troubled young woman, Erica isn’t a prostitute, merely promiscuous and finds it difficult to make friends or forge relationships. When she’s sacked from her job, a strange yet friendly Iraq war veteran named Nate (Taylor), who lives in the same building, helps her to get a job at the hardware store he works at. Although initially hostile towards Nate, she slowly warms to him but makes it clear that she won’t sleep with him, despite asking to sleep next to him at night in his room. To Nate’s disappointment, Erica’s sexual appetite continues to thrive as he witnesses his co-workers sneaking off to the toilets with her. One day, a male employee turns nasty with Erica at work and Nate rescues her from the situation. Erica and Nate continue to bond as she invites him to attend a kid’s birthday party with her.
Across town, Franki’s band has been signed by a record company and the band look forward to touring. Franki however has concerns over his mother, who’s seriously ill with cancer, but is overjoyed when they found out she is in remission. However, happiness does not last for long when the lives of Franki, Eric and Nate collide meaning terrible consequences for all concerned.
Red, White and Blue is one of the first titles from Trinity X, a label of Trinity film company, that deal in controversial films and this film is no exception. The film explores the lives of these three individuals who all portray characteristics of love, kindness and evil. Not one of these characters is completely good and this is what will mess your head as the story unfolds. Usually in films and stories, there is a character who you root for, but in this film there is not one person. As soon as you think someone is truly likable, you see a different side which changes your perception immediately. People are complex and this is an aspect the film explores. I’m not saying you won’t like any of the characters, because you will. I quite liked Erica and Nate but you soon question their actions and who is the better person between them all.
The film also delves into taboo and uneasy subjects and is quite deep in it’s approach. It makes you think how you’d react to these scenarios and whether the characters reacted appropriately. I did sympathise with all the characters involved, cos each had a pureness about them, a kindness but they all made some wrong choices which determined their fate.
The stand out performance for me is the sadistic yet sweet Nate, played by English actor Noah Taylor, who I last saw in Tim Burton’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Noah completely transformed himself and was intimidating yet kind as he longed after Erica and cared for her when others treated her as a sex object. He convincingly portrayed a complex character and in the later scenes is quite intense. A brilliant performance. I must also add that the other cast members, especially Amanda Fuller and Marc Senter, who rose to the challenges this film brought and gave an honest, deep performance in this hard edged, psycho-sexual thriller.
Whilst there are a few violent scenes, this story is more focused on the individuals and their lives and how one catalyst can trigger a series of events effecting and involving more people than you could imagine. This is a very deep tale and not for the faint of heart. If you have the chance to see this film, I highly recommend it. One of the most thought provoking, raw, eye opening films I’ve seen in a long time.
[pt-filmtitle]Red White and Blue[/pt-filmtitle]