Written and directed by Josh Sternfeld and set in a small American town, As Blood Runs Deep tells the story of Noah Cordin (Nick Stahl, Terminator 3) and his new partner Leslie Spencer (Rachel Nicols, Star Trek) and their attempt to solve the death of a young boy in a burglary.
The script and movie give a vivid and insightful look into the loyalties of small town folk in America. Set in a small town that is struggling with unemployment it shows the hardships and pressures put on families through one of the burglars committing their crime to try and help his sister and her sick son.
The crime itself is committed in Noah’s neighboring town. Although it is a terrible crime the movie does not paint the killer and his accomplice as maniacal murderers but as two desperate individuals who accidentally kill a child. The story doesn’t focus so much on the killer but more on the accomplice Shane Loakin (Jonathan Tucker) and his struggles to help out his sister and her family. The audience feels a sense of sympathy for Shane and his struggle.
The movie is beautifully shot making great use of the film’s settings helping the audience gauge the isolation of these small towns. The sounds and soundtrack go so well with what is portrayed that the feeling and atmosphere of the scenes is almost real.
At the start of the movie it feels as though it will play out like an episode of CSI, with the police looking for clues, but this soon changes when we are shown who the criminals are. Although we know the crime, the criminals and the people looking for them it is hard to not keep watching. The audience wants to know how it is Noah will catch them – if he does indeed catch them.
An unexpected and violent twist involving Shane and his brother-in-law keeps the audience guessing about what will happen next and whether the crime be solved; a question that, ultimately, is not conventionally answered.
Strong acting talents from a young cast, interesting shots and locations and a compelling story make this movie a highly enjoyable one. A must see for anyone who enjoys clever, but different, crime movies.
Best performance: Jonathan Tucker
Best scene: When Noah smashes up the bar and Leslie keeps the locals at bay with a shot gun.