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TIFF Review: Free Fire

free fire

A weapons deal taking place in an abandoned factory goes horribly wrong.

 Uneasiness surrounds arms deal that involves a buyer, seller and brokers.  The first shots do not involve bullets but antagonistic one liners that only fuel the atmosphere of anxiety.  The setting itself looks like a no man’s land of industrial waste.  Oddly enough it is a personal vendetta that sets off the carnage which takes place in a single location.  Complicating matters are a series of double-crossing which only makes matter get even worse.

If there is ever another Grindhouse, Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriquez should include Ben Wheatley who has a real flare when it comes to depicting cinematic violence.  How often do you get to see a head crushed by the wheel of a van or someone being shot in the nose?  The retro attire and bright colours make for vibrant and stylish imagery.  It takes a lot of confidence to devote a gunfight in real time that leaves the wounded characters crawling around.  Not sure if Wheatley conducted research by studying previous war films but it certainly feels that way as everything is meticulously orchestrated.

There are setups and payoffs; however, one in particular involving a certain assault weapon never goes anywhere.   An obvious question does eventually get answered.  I am not sure if Sharlto Copley is just an annoying actor or is really good at being annoying but if there was anyone I did not want to get out alive he was the one.  Brie Larson does not have much to do outside of being the designated femme fatale.  The two actors that seem to fair the best are Cillian Murphy and Armie Hammer as they quarterback the mayhem.


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Trevor Hogg is a freelance video editor and writer who currently resides in Canada; he can be found at LinkedIn.

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