Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Kalamity - Review - @BrandonCSites

Kalamity (2010) *1/2
D: James M. Hausler
C: Nick Stahl, Jonathan Jackson, Beau Garrett, Christopher M. Clark, Alona Tal, Sammi Hanratty, Patricia Kalember, Robert Forster
P: Lifelong friends come to grips with one of them falling apart psychologically and the murdering spree that springs from it all.

Yet another slick, visually polished film lacking substance. Kalamity aims to be a psychological study on the deteriorating mental state of a character and how it affects his friends. The most interesting person in the film is Jonathan Jackson. Jackson's character is falling deeper and deeper and there's no way out for him. That's where the film's central focus should have been.

Instead, the film focuses on Jackson's best friend, played by Nick Stahl. Since there is only so much for the friend character to do while he waits trying to figure out what exactly Jackson is up to, the film drags out relentlessly. Stahl's characters engages in one repetitious situation after another, in an attempt to pad out the film's running time. Clearly, Stahl's character should have been a supporting one, not the lead. 

What I admire about the film is Jonathan Jackson. His role is grossly underwritten, yet somehow or another he manages to turn in an effective performance. Not only is it an effective performance, it's his breakthrough performance as an adult actor. Watching Kalamity, I felt like I was finally seeing the real Jonathan Jackson. I felt like I saw him for the first time. 

It's a shame that Jackson's best performance is wasted in a sub-par film. The script isn't focused. The director or editor couldn't wrap their head around the fact that Jackson's character should have been the central focus. The film wanders around aimlessly. Kalamity meanders from one scene to the next with no real sense of direction or aim or purpose. [R] 90 mins.


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