Sunday, 29 January 2012

THE DRUMMOND WILL DVD review

A dark comedy with nods towards Withnail and I, The Drummond Will is out now on DVD. Watch the trailer and read my review, next...

Reunited at the funeral of their father, estranged brothers Marcus and Danny (Phillip James and Mark Oosterveen) discover they've been left his remote house in the will. Danny is keen to make the most of the house whilst Marcus would rather make his way back to his own life, but when they find an old man in the house clutching a mysterious bag of money, they must decide what to do with the man and the cash.


Part farce and part comedy of errors, there's a touch of the Withnail's about this, except instead of going on holiday by mistake the two money hungry brothers end up killing a bunch of small town locals. It's a ridiculous plot in all the ways it should be, and a few that it shouldn't. There's elements of this film that don't work, including some uneven acting, the town policeman being a prime example. Unlike the two leads who do a good line in exasperated confusion, he doesn't act like a real person, instead someone doing a poor John Cleese impression as part of an amateur dramatics sketch tribute. Add that to the Vicar of Dibley-esque locals and the Ladykillers vibe and it's all a bit of a muddle.


The film certainly looks very nice, a rich black and white that reminded me of Christopher Nolan's debut, Following. Sadly, there's none of the invention that film displayed. It's what could be described as the very definition of a British festival film, a minor budgeted black comedy that audiences may cheer for at the time but won't remember once they're back home with their DVD collections. The story just doesn't have enough spark to keep you engaged, the brief flashes of violence offering enough macabre humour for a giggle but little more.


The DVD cover shows the character of Marcus with his face covered in blood which, although referencing a scene from the film, is mis-selling it somewhat. It's really an old school Ealing style farce trying to sell itself as a modern Severance style brit Horror, but to its detriment it fails to pull that combination off.


An intriguing but heavily flawed debut.


Verdict




Special Features: Commentary, Deleted Scenes, Trailer, Gag Reel, Movie References, VFX.

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