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Jeremy Isaiah Earl
A mother and a son escape an abusive father only to be thrown onto the streets and into the dark world of prostitution and violence. This empowering story is about a lost mother searching for the purpose of her suffering.
Frank (Ray Winstone) is confined to a residential home, stricken with Alzheimer's - past, present and future steadily disintegrating. Then one day, James (Jim Sturgess) appears, wanting to re-connect with a father who no longer knows him. James springs Frank from the home and the pair go on the run. As their haphazard journey unfolds - funny, violent and tragic by turns - the present merges with imperfect memories of the past and fact with fiction and we begin to realize that nothing is quite what it seems. ASHES itself defies neat categorization; part road movie, part psychological thriller; part contemporary film noir, but all beautifully shot and with a grimly satisfying twist.Written by
Greg (from the DVD jacket)
Ray Winstone is one of my favourite British actors, and usually brightens up even the most dour of motion pictures. Here though, his role is a very confused one... On the one hand, he's a mentally ill dementia sufferer who sees delusions, and on the other he remembers things from his past, such as stealing cars and killing people. I thought Dustin Hoffman's Rain Man was slightly unconvincing, but this goes right to the heart of Hollywood Illnesses. He's too hysterical and too knowing, so alas, you always know you're watching a performer rather that than a very sick man.
A cross between a road movie and a buddy movie, when the film doesn't focus on Winstone's odd behaviour and hallucinations it tries to build a relationship between him and his erstwhile son. There are touching moments, but a twist late on puts a new slant on things and we wonder just why Winstone's offspring makes some of the decisions he does, and it comes across as poor writing. Ashes is a mediocrity that won't stand out on anyone involved in it's CV, and will probably be yesterday's chip paper very soon after being viewed... 5/10
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