The Rover (2014)

imageDavid Michôd directs Guy Pearce, Robert Pattison and Susan Prior in this violent, post society road movie.

Starting elusive and palpably intense but ending on a grim, nihilistic punchline, this Mad Max inspired drama winds down a little too early. Once we have gotten used to its expert world building it seems to grind to a halt. Set “10 years after the collapse”, seemingly in that same dusty, fly ridden outback (scarred with roads and pockmarked with unfortunates ekeing out sad existences) as the 1979 classic, helps. Guy Pearce brings his usual captivating, emotionally bottled up manliness to his central turn, while Robert Pattison doesn’t shit the bed in a role you still feel a better actor could bring a lot more to. Ho-hum, his name and looks probably got this funded so it is hard to resent his presence. And even if plot and character wise it doesn’t really amount to much at all there are sequences, moments and smaller performances so expertly delivered that the film has a lasting haunting power.

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