Conclusion: 'The Night They Raided Minsky's' is a fun film that allows itself to be as bawdy as its subject matter. And while that is entertaining for the most part, the script's surface-level attention to its characters leaves them and the story feeling one-dimensional. Terrific actors like Elliott Gould and Jason Robards are given little to go on, and their threads feel mostly interested in getting to the ending hinted at in the film's title.
Conclusion: Blood Red is, unfortunately, a dull and uninspired affair that decent camerawork and an interesting, albeit bizarre, performance from the late, great Dennis Hopper cannot save. Olive's Blu-ray looks nice enough and features good audio but it is devoid of any real extras. Unless you're a western completist or a diehard fan of any of the principals and need this to round out a collection, it's a pretty easy movie to live without. Skip it.
Conclusion: Grand sweeping frontier epics are a hard genre to work in. They require a great amount of time, care, and craft to pull off. Some rise, some fall, others hover right around the middle. ‘Blood Red’ is one of those middle movies. It isn’t a bad movie, but it isn’t a great movie either. It’s worth taking a look at, if only to appreciate the technical aspects of the film.
Conclusion: Ekland proves herself to be a rather game comedienne in this appealing if flawed film, and the rest of the cast offers wonderful moments as well. The romantic pairing between Ekland and Robards is at least a little problematic, and the film's seams tend to show despite the reportedly heroic efforts of editor Rosenblum to whip Friedkin's chaotic scenes into some kind of order. The film might have done a bit better had it gone flat out for farce.
Conclusion: Blood has good performances, it literally drips with atmosphere, and it's been capably presented on Blu-ray. But it's not a very satisfying film, and I would recommend any number of British TV detective series instead, e.g., George Gently , which is set in a different era, but also takes place in a seaside environment and explores territory just as dark. Rent if curious. Did you find this review helpful?
Excerpt: A teenager is mutilated, and the suspect – a grizzly, greasy religious convert with a penchant for perversion – will not confess. For Blood , that is cinematic fuel for expansively wide cinematography, and a story of mental desperation. Jason Buliegh (Ben Crompton) haunts a rundown England police bureau and its two lead detectives, brothers Joe and Chrissie Fairburn (Paul Bettany, Stephen Graham respectively).
Excerpt: In the drizzly, grayish-blue policier Blood , Paul Bettany plays a detective who kills a suspect in a fit of anger. When it becomes obvious that the man was innocent, Bettany finds himself caught in a double web of guilt and paranoia. Screenwriter Bill Gallagher has told this story before, as the 2004 BBC series Conviction ; for this adaptation, he excises much of the original’s knottiness in order to focus on a handful of core themes.