Blood Father (2016) Poster

(2016)

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7/10
Qualities make up for the flaws – good, gritty entertainment
plpregent2 June 2017
Although Blood Father does not bring anything new to the table in terms of storytelling, it manages to provide decent entertainment by taking advantage of its filming locations, a good cast and somewhat interesting, although undeveloped, lead characters.

Link (Mel Gibson) is an ex-con turned tattoo artist and former alcoholic who lives a reasonably quiet life in a trailer park home. One day, he receives a phone call from his daughter, Lydia, who has gone missing for many years, and who's seeking help, as drug dealers and law enforcement are trying to track her down. Sounds familiar? It probably does. It's a very classic story, and make no mistake about it, this tale is quite typical of the genre. I would even go as far as to say that story-wise, this film is sub-par and plot development is almost nonexistent. Add an anticlimactic and abrupt ending, and an almost shameful use of pretty interesting supporting characters, one has to wonder what Blood Father really has to offer.

The answer is an overall pretty good time, despite its flaws, thanks to sympathetic characters, above-average dialogue for the genre, some gritty moments, very welcome touches of humor and great cinematography. Jean-François Richet, who directed the biographical films about Jacques Mesrine, does a pretty good job too.

Again, it's a shame to make such little use of Kirby (William H. Macy) and Preacher (Michael Parks), but their presence is appreciated while it lasts. The Sicario character's first appearance is blood chilling, but unfortunately, the character's mystique evaporates from lack of screen time and further significant appearances. Mel Gibson is perfect in his role and Erin Moriarty (Lydia) is pretty good as well. The chemistry between both characters is tangible, and the generational clash sub-theme is subtle, but interesting nonetheless. Moreover, there are a few sequences, such as the first scene at the store and the scene when Link and Lydia are in the back of a truck filled with illegal Mexican immigrants, where the film humorously takes aim at some absurdities, such as a minor buying boxes of ammo without being asked for her ID, but being denied a pack of cigarettes because she's underage, or Lydia countering her dad's argument that illegal Mexican immigrants are "stealing" fruit-picking jobs from white Americans.

While the film offers some nice set-pieces, as a sequence of events, Blood Father's script does not profit from the best possible dramatic continuity, and ultimately falls short on delivering any truly memorable moment whatsoever. In that regard, the writing feels very uneven, as it delivers in the dialogue department, but lacks truly interesting ideas or ingenuity story-wise.

That being said, its qualities are likely to draw you in for its hour and a half runtime, and should manage to entertain anyone who likes this type of flick.
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7/10
Is this Mel's comeback?
TruthTwentyFour11 October 2016
Pretty fitting role for this man right? A recovering alcoholic... Pretty certain Mel was as drunk as a skunk when he committed career suicide lambasting Jewish people, and everything else under the sun. Fast forward a decade later, and I ask myself has he been humbled... Seen his evil ways and has now returned to us born again? In recovery? I don't know. What I do know is Mel Gibson has always owned anti-hero roles like this. He was good at them back then, and apparently a decade later he still is.

So... This film kicks ass. It has heart. It hits all of the right notes for a Father revenge flick, and his performance hits all of these notes way way better than a movie like Taken. This film is well worth a watch, and I can't decide whether I should feel guilty or happy about this.

I guess it all depends on whether this guy is still a jerk, or has woken the hell up. Ultimately though, what does it really matter? We have this thing in our society where celebrities have to be likable acceptable public figures, like politicians, or they're kicked to the curb. When really what does it matter? They're just actors doing a job. They could be a jerk and a great actor, or a saint and an awful actor. It really just relates to the caliber of their work, and I have to say, whether he is the former or the latter, he nailed this role like he did so often back in the day with other roles like this--back when everyone liked him.

Pretty good movie...
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7/10
Gibson's best movie in years
Leofwine_draca9 July 2017
Warning: Spoilers
BLOOD FATHER is an intense little action thriller that also happens to be Mel Gibson's best film as an actor since EDGE OF DARKNESS. The plot is nothing special and sees Gibson playing the usual eccentric hard-bitten type, living in a trailer and estranged from his family. His daughter's involvement with a gang of Mexican drug dealers sees her returning to him to ask from his help, and a chase scenario unfolds from there.

This film is well-shot throughout and efficiently low key. Instead of the fun but over the top mayhem of a JOHN WICK film, in which our protagonist bumps off hundreds of foes effortlessly, Gibson and co. just have five or six tough types ranged against them. The running time is short and the pace snappy, full of hard-bitten dialogue and decent performances from a supporting cast including Michael Parks, Diego Luna, William H. Macy, and Miguel Sandoval. Another treat is that Erin Moriarty isn't your stereotypical whining, bratty adolescent but instead an intelligent-thinking adult too. Gibson is on top form, as always, and the brief but violent bouts of action are expertly staged.
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8/10
Mad Mel's back to settle the score.
Ser_Stephen_Seaworth26 August 2016
When we first meet John Link, Mel Gibson's grizzled ex-con anti-hero in his latest thriller Blood Father, he's in the midst of an impassioned soliloquy at an AA meeting. A self-proclaimed "real success story," Link is a recovering alky two years out of the slammer, whose wife left him and whose daughter is in the wind, leaving him with no one in his corner and with no one to blame but himself. It's a fitting noir-esque introduction to Link, but also—perhaps more appropriately, especially as he's talking straight at the camera when he says it—it seems to be coming from Gibson himself.

Directed by Jean-François Richet, who helmed 2008's gripping gangster diptych Mesrine, Blood Father seems at first glance to be another addition to the tried-and-true Gibson formula: a brutal guy on the wrong side of the tracks takes on those who wronged him, often in typically gruesome fashion. Certainly, John Link could be blood brothers with Porter and Driver, Gibson's violent protagonists from Payback and Get the Gringo. Living on the fringe of society while scratching out a living as a tattoo artist from his grungy desert trailer, Link is as blunt and terse as his monosyllabic name would suggest. The difference is that Blood Father feels like Gibson confronting the demons that put him and his career on the skids over the last decade. His performance feels like penance, and not in a negative way. Gibson's mainstay has always been passion—in both definitions of the word—and here he bares himself to the bone.

Link's efforts to stay on the straight and narrow are complicated by the cataclysmic arrival of his wayward daughter Lydia (Erin Moriarty). Strung-out and on the run from a bunch of bad customers, Lydia's presence puts her father on an inexorable course towards violence—which, of course, he excels at dishing out. And true to form for a Mel Gibson joint, there is no shortage of it: once the blood starts flowing and the bullets start flying, it's hard to stop.

Gibson's trademark wild-man intensity is in full froth here, and it's always a welcome sight to behold, even if it's been in otherwise subpar productions or against lesser actors. For the most part, fortunately, Blood Father isn't pigeonholed in either category. While some of the dialogue sounds more than a little ponderous (Lydia spends much of the film spitting out sheaves of insight with such precision that you'd think she were a Sorkinian heroine instead of, well, someone who snorts heroin), the rest of it is balanced in taut, punchy lines that would make Hemingway proud. And unlike Get the Gringo, which featured Gibson at the top of his game making his co-stars look downright amateurish, he's bolstered by some reliable names this go-around: among them, William H. Macy as Link's good-natured AA sponsor and Michael Parks as a seedy old contact from his past. In fact, the only real weak link of the cast is Moriarty, whose erratic performance is far too self-conscious and unconvincing for us to really care about her plight. It's only through Gibson that we care (and to his credit, he does and we do).

Much of Blood Father is a foregone conclusion, all the way up to its bullet-riddled finale. And while the film rarely evinces an inspired note, it's still a good potboiler, and there's nothing wrong with a well-worn story if it's well-told. But with an actor like Gibson at the fore, it becomes something more personal. Blood Father's about a man facing old sins and the grim reckoning that comes with them. And every single one of Mad Mel's is on full display here.
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8/10
This'll Exceed Most People's Expectations
seymourblack-19 September 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Most people will expect "Blood Father" to be a modest, run-of-the-mill, action thriller with an uninspiring story but it's actually much better than that. Whilst its plot wouldn't win any prizes for originality, its fast pace, brilliant dialogue and well-choreographed action sequences make it compelling to watch and a storming performance by Mel Gibson (who does anger and frustration so well), adds plenty of intensity and edginess. The well-drawn characters at the centre of the story are a father and daughter who have to go on the run together and their unorthodox relationship and entertaining banter provide a great deal of interest and enjoyment as they both gradually discover that they're actually much closer to their own redemptions than either of them realise.

Lydia Link (Erin Moriarty), a teenager who ran away from home a few years earlier, is living with her 30-year-old boyfriend, Jonah (Diego Luna). He's a drug dealer with family connections to a Mexican drug cartel and as part of his operation, uses a number of "stash houses" in which he stores some of his merchandise. When it appears that the drugs in one of the houses have gone missing, Jonah and his gang, accompanied by Lydia, go there and terrorise the tenants. When this doesn't produce any useful information, Jonah kills the man of the house and having given Lydia a gun, orders her to shoot the woman. After a few moments of hesitation and panic, Lydia accidentally shoots Jonah in the neck and thinking that she's killed him, immediately goes on the run. Terrified and with no-one else to turn to, she phones her estranged father, John (Mel Gibson), and asks him for money and whatever help he can give her.

John Link is an ex-con and recovering alcoholic who lives in a trailer park and earns money as a tattoo artist. His only remaining friend is Kirby Curtis (William H Macy) who is his AA sponsor and lives in one of the neighbouring trailers. After his long career as a criminal, John is desperately trying to go straight and live a peaceful life but when his long-lost daughter contacts him for help, he can't refuse.

After meeting up with Lydia, John takes her back to his trailer where he thinks she can lay low for a while but this soon proves to be impossible when some members of Jonah's gang turn up and demand that she be handed over to them. When John refuses, they ram and topple over his trailer with their SUV and it's only when some of his armed neighbours appear on the scene that the gang eventually decides to retreat. Realising that there's no way that they can safely remain at his home; John decides to go on the run with Lydia to escape the danger that she's in from Jonah's gang. It soon becomes clear however, that her predicament is worse than they realised as she's also being pursued by a Mexican drug cartel hit-man and the police who are following up their investigations into what happened at the stash house. A number of very tense and dangerous situations then follow as John and Lydia repeatedly come close to being killed before events lead them to the story's final, violent confrontation.

One of the surprises of this movie is how well the relationship between John and Lydia is depicted as, after years apart, they rapidly build up a rapport which often involves sarcasm on John's part whenever he realises that his daughter has made so many of the same mistakes that he's made in his life. Despite the hard-boiled nature of some of their exchanges, the underlying affection that they feel for each other is constantly apparent and the subtlety with which this is conveyed is one of the most impressive features of Gibson and Moriarty's performances.

"Blood Father" is full of humour and witty one-liners (e.g. "she's every loser's lucky day" and "Kid, you've got the mindset of a battered housewife") and is also well-directed with great use being made of its locations and a neat symmetry being achieved by the similarity of Gibson's first appearance on-screen and Moriarty's last. This is definitely a movie that impresses with its well-disciplined and no-nonsense approach and will certainly exceed the expectations of most people who see it.
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8/10
Gritty Father
SteveMierzejewski7 September 2016
Well, this was much better than I expected it to be. What did I expect? An action movie with numerous unbelievable action scenes strung together with a weak plot and supported by poor acting. I thought it would be a movie that Mel chose to act in because he needed money to pay his alimony.

Yes, it was an action movie, more or less, and maybe a few scenes stretched credulity. However, there was much more depth to the plot as Mel, the gritty, ex-con father of a troubled teen, tries to do what he can to get some redemption. I have to say one thing about Mel, the guy can act. I had my doubts after watching a few of his more recent flicks, but this character seemed perfectly written for him. The supporting cast was also good and gave the movie more depth than most action films. And, what we all want in such films, the bad guys were bad.

It's a compelling watch and a good way to spend an evening.
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7/10
The good old Mel !
timbercrew-223-32022830 September 2016
I expected it to be a Mel Gibson driven movie with a simple story.

I also knew the director Richet is known for the qualities of his Mesrine Biopic, but still didn't await the same genre.

Blood Father is not a very serious movie trying to reflect reality to the bone, but an old school action movie with a fresh tight rhythm. Funny dialogues/moments and good performances from quite every actor. No waste of time here (maybe a bit too fast, especially the ending)

I loved it because it was entertaining from start to finish. Some would say it's an overly simplistic rehash of a story we've seen a hundred times. They wouldn't be far from the truth, but the film still is engaging if you let go of your High Concept expectations.

It respects its viewer in a way that makes me feel bad for liking these soulless blockbusters we're being fed these days.

The funny thing is that the movie deliberately reflects Mel's filmography and personal story in different ways without pushing it too far.

I went to see Mel Gibson again, and boy I did!

I need more Mel, g*ddammit!
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9/10
Mel Gibson unleashes hell
Ramascreen8 August 2016
I love it when Mel Gibson is in his Mad Max Lethal Weapon Braveheart Patriot mode. The character and the performance you see in BLOOD FATHER is something that Gibson often returns to from time to time. The tortured soul, protective of his loved one, willing to unleash hell when necessary. BLOOD FATHER is hardcore. A merciless story of retribution.

Directed by Peter Craig, Mel Gibson plays an ex-convict and former alcoholic named John Link who's trying his best to keep it together . Until one day when his estranged daughter comes back into his life but with a big secret, turns out, the drug cartel is hunting her down, a situation that forces Link to use his past connections and his skills to keep his daughter alive.

Much of the film is set in the desert, so one can't help but make a stretched comparison to Mel Gibson's old days as Mad Max. The best way to describe BLOOD FATHER in a way that today's audiences would understand is that Gibson's character, John Link, is more or less kinda like Liam Neeson's character in "Taken" franchise, but with less resources and Link is more rough around the edges. But both characters would go above and beyond for their respective daughters.

BLOOD FATHER is a very straightforward film, it has that father-daughter drama, though not as strong or as powerful as such films as "The Wrestler," for example, but some of the lines do hit home, and the action is more about firepower and gunfights, very brute, very basic, but it gets the job done. Some might say BLOOD FATHER is predictable and I don't blame them, it is after all just one of those movies for us Charles Bronson fans who just want to see the bad guys ultimately get what they deserve, a satisfying punishment.

-- Rama's Screen --
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8/10
He's still got it.
BA_Harrison28 August 2016
When runaway teenager Lydia (Erin Moriarity) accidentally shoots her drugs cartel boyfriend, she makes a desperate run for it, asking for help from her estranged father Link (Mel Gibson), a tough ex-con still on parole. Together, father and daughter go into hiding, pursued by vicious killers.

I know that Mad Mel doesn't think very highly of the English (or anyone who is not an Australian/American Catholic, for that matter), but I'm still a fan, and Blood Father proves that he still has what it takes, the star putting in a moving performance as a caring father who will do anything to protect his daughter.

This isn't an all-out action-fest, which might disappoint some viewers (although there are some great action scenes to be had)—it's a tale of redemption, with a flawed character doing his best to make up for past mistakes, which seems very apt: perhaps Hollywood should learn something from this film and give its troubled star one more chance.

Best moments: the opening bit of satire—16 year-old Lydia buys countless packs of bullets at a store without a problem, but is carded when it comes to cigarettes; the motorbike chase scene (nice to see Mel toting a shotgun once again); and what's that? Mel making fun of himself in a scene in which he spews hatred of minorities? I had to laugh.

7.5 out of 10, rounded up to 8 for IMDb.
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10/10
Mel Gibson Is Back And Better Than Ever!
wileycmm316 August 2016
I went into this movie completely blind. I did not see a single advertisement for the film, in fact I didn't even know of its existence up until the day before seeing it. I haven't seen Mel Gibson do anything for awhile so the movie definitely caught my interest. I expected it to be a fun B- movie turn your brain off type of thing.

But actually I think that this is one of the better films of the year. It was fast paced, fun, and brutal. The acting was well done all the way around. It was emotional, dramatic, and thrilling. Mel Gibson put on one of his greatest performances, and caught me completely off guard. His character was very fun to watch, reminiscent of Joel from "The Last Of Us". William H. Macy was fantastic as well. I would recommend this movie to anybody who loves any genre. It has a little something for everybody. Really great film and I hope it ends up receiving a lot more recognition than its getting right now. I highly recommend you go see this film, you won't regret it! 10/10
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8/10
Fans of the gritty, rougher Gibson should love this.
SpoilerAlertReviews9 October 2016
Jean-François Richet, French director of the highly acclaimed Mesrine bring to life the titular novel by Peter Craig, who also wrote the screenplays for both Mockingjays and Affleck's The Town. A story about an estranged daughter who's being hunted by the worse kinds has no choice but seek out her father, John Link who happens to be an ex-worse kind himself.

She's a runaway, mixes with the wrong crowd, the dangerous kind and ends up on the run. Link, her father, is an ex-con, recovering alcoholic and is her only hope and possibly she's his only chance of having any paternal responsibility. It's similar to Run All Night where a father will do whatever is absolutely necessary to keep their children alive.

I hope I look as good as Mel Gibson when I'm his age, looking awesome and comfortable with that worn, rugged, tough look still emanating to be a force to be reckoned with. John Link is like an amalgamation of many of Gibson's past characters bearing unintentional similarities to Lethal Weapon's Riggs, Payback's Porter, the gringo and even a little of Mad Max. One thing all these characters share is that Gibson psychotic rage and the controlled calmness he does when the sh*t is hitting not just the fan but everything else.

Kudos to newcomer Erin Moriarty who superbly acts up against Gibson as his endangered, rebellious troubled teen. Having briefly seen her only last month in Captain Fantastic, it's impressive to see her take on a role opposite Gibson. The volatile relationship between the two is captivating enforced by their quick-fire and sometimes amusing dialogue.

There's quite a supporting cast too with legendary Michael Parks, William H. Macy and the usual gang banger Richard Cabral. Parks is brilliant, having a presence of sinister grandeur and Raoul Max Trujillo stars as a Sicario which is a little ironic being that he also starred in last year's Sicario.

The violence is abrasive and abrupt but it's more dramatic with John Link battling and reconnecting with his old demons to secure the safety of his wanted daughter. There's nothing fancy, no spectacular sequences, but that gives the film a better sense of realism. There's a little of annoying shaky cam to begin with but that soon fades.

It's a riveting movie from start to finish and well paced. It's good to see Mel Gibson back on the big screen, and be on such good form too. Fans of the tougher, rougher Gibson shouldn't be disappointed.

Running Time: 9 The Cast: 8 Performance: 9 Direction: 8 Story: 8 Script: 8 Creativity: 8 Soundtrack: 7 Job Description: 8 The Extra Bonus Points: 5 for good ol' Gibson Would I buy the Bluray?: Yes.

78% 8/10
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7/10
"You Think That the Garden of Eden was in Norway?" (dialog, daughter to dad)
A_Different_Drummer27 August 2016
Two things to know going in.

The is a Hollywood "resurrection" role -- when an A-list big-name star disappears for a while and then comes back in a role you might not expect.

(They can be fun. Costner did a few and they were all interesting. In Fargo Season 2 Jean Smart came back playing a grandmother in a crime family -- and aced it. Gibson, formerly the "sexiest man on the planet" according to polls, nails his cranky, old, character is this one.)

Second it is not a A-film. The running time (about 90 mins) is the tip-off. So going into it, you expect something different.

Which is what you get.

It is not really an actioner, even though it stars one of the biggest action stars in the biz. And does have a lot of action in it. It is more of a road movie. And it is just quirky enough to keep interest.

If Gibson is good, Erin Moriarty is a revelation. This is her breakout role. You will be seeing her again soon. The script, which is razor sharp, requires her to have play both young/stupid and smart/strong at the same time. A contradictory role that would be be a challenge for an A-list pro. She takes command of the role and becomes unforgettable by her third scene.

Great fun.
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9/10
Nice Return for Mel.....
daffystruck26 August 2016
I really enjoyed this movie. The story was a little convenient (that's all I can say without spoiling), but I was pleasantly surprised. Mel seemed at the top of his game or very close to it. William H Macy was perfect and would have liked to see more of him. He is always a plus to the cast no matter what the movie. He really is a pleasure to watch. Erin Moriarty showed a good emotional range. The Villains were menacing enough and posed a valid threat. I appreciated the fact that this movie wasn't using nudity and a lot of sleazy humor. (one naked mannequin, or blowup doll in the background) Its nice to see a classic action/drama movie reminiscent of the 80s/90s. If you were ever a fan of Mel Gibson's, Definitely Check this one out. :-)
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Creepy Characters, Good Action Flic
lavatch11 October 2016
Warning: Spoilers
In the behind-the-scenes bonus segment to the DVD of "Blood Father," the director, screenwriter, and actors all agreed that this was a character-driven film. The focus is on the father-daughter bonding in a wild "road trip," as they seek to flee from some of the most unsavory characters of recent memory.

Mel Gibson is a standout as the recovering alcoholic and criminal with a heart. Devoted to his daughter, whom he neglected when she was a child, Gibson's character reunites with her now in her early twenties and deep in trouble. With some excellent scenic background in the American southwest, the film unfolds as the father and daughter renew their acquaintance in a series of action scenes. After auditioning 200 performers for the role of the daughter, the casting team selected Erin Moriarty, who was extremely effective in the role.

One of the strengths of the film is the dialogue with witty banter between Gibson and Moriarty. The excellent supporting cast rounds off an excellent acting ensemble.

Jean-François Richet was the director who, perhaps surprisingly, avoided a European, arty style to the film in favor of straightforward bright lighting and plenty of action. As apparent in the behind-the-scenes interviews, there was an intelligent and efficient approach to filming this above-average action film.
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9/10
Great Crazy,Violent Mad Performance From Mel Gibson Movie
nikola173 September 2016
Mel Gibson really needs a last chance to do movies since he is dismissed Warner Bros movie company, it's sad but this movie is made buy different company. this is still great movie,fun, crazy Performance from Mel Gibson Performance Little mix Country for old man Little bit of Mad Max and Run All Night western type Action Drama movie. you could say it's more Action, Crazy, Gore lots of violence in movie. Plot follows

Lydia(Erin Moriarty)she is with gang and her boyfriend Jonah (Diego Luna)was going into some random family house gang is just breaking in looking for what they want, rather then Jonah told Lydia to shot mother but she shot her Jonah her boyfriend she run to call John Link (Mel Gibson)who was EX American Solider who use to be on Drugs and drinking is now lives on trailer Park he's living is tattooing people makes money out of it. he pick up phone it was his lost daughter he

runs pick's her up. he release's that his daughter habituated to drugs and Alcohol, Lydia has text threats messages gang comes in they want Lydia Mel Gibson say's go away but they don't obey they chose to kill him and take his daughter but they don't know who they are messing with so John and Lydia on run he ends up shooting going crazy, still likable character but he has a lot of problems on past but he is not bad guy similar to Liam nession character from run all night who has a lot problems on past, so Jonah and his man and hit-man is called Sicario went out there to kill Lydia and John but john keeps killing hit-man they keep on running and running until he will kill them all to product his daughter. very worth watching movie to watch badass bike 1997

Harley-Davidson Softail with Badass Scene firing double barrel shotgun it's like watching Mad Max sequel with same scene in mad max with bike chasing and one of action scenes fun to watch it's very fast pace of movie normal pace, you have crazy scene of Mel Gibson with Michael Parks very great crazy mad performance but i don't want to ruin movie away. a lot of scenes are bloody and gore not because its called blood father that's how action movies are made. The Action is very good noting like mad max just Similar movie to this with Picture of camera film Mel Gibson has gone crazy, great performance but still i want Hollywood to hire Mel Gibson give him a last chance for movies like this and mad max franchise 9.10 i would recommend it for action fans if you love Mel Gibson and his movies or movies like run all night Similar more of no country for old man and mad max to run all night.
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10/10
There Will Be Blood
BoomStick1115 August 2016
Taken meets Sicario meets Sons of Anarchy in the new action thriller; Blood Father, which reminds us once again why you don't mess with Mel Gibson's family.

Oh Mel Gibson, you amazing, charismatic, volatile, genius, we freaking missed you. It's been 6 years since we had a good reason to be excited about a Mel Gibson movie and he's back with a bang and more than a few growls in Blood Father. Watching this film I found myself with a big smile on my face and saying things like "Hell yeah", "that's right", and "let's go" throughout the duration of this incredibly enjoyable action thrill ride. Mel plays a formerly violent ex convict trying to live a quiet life as a tattoo artist when he is dragged into a war with a violent gang in order to protect his estranged daughter (played by Erin Moriarity) who suddenly comes back into his life. All hell breaks loose as Mel and his daughter go on the run through the California desert dodging (and spraying) bullets, gang bangers, Sicarios, and vengeful bikers left and right all while both trying to stay sober.

"Don't worry I'm not dying, I'm just in El Centro" is just one of the many quotable lines from this tense, gritty, violent, and surprisingly funny action thriller from director Jean-Francois Richet. The best part about Blood Father is that it's exactly the film you think it's going to be. If you've seen the trailer you know this movie, and in this case that's not a bad thing. The film never once deviates from its plot and tone over the course of its perfectly taut 88-minute run time. There's no fluff, no unnecessary dialogue or characters, just hard-hitting action and thrills. It's unapologetic in its simple reasoning to have Mel Gibson doing what he does best; playing a father and busting heads. Blood Father is essentially a modern day western with motorcycles instead of horses and Mel absolutely killing it as the not-to-be-messed-with man with a troubled past. His character John Link has done far more bad in his life than good and sees protecting his daughter as the last chance he may ever have to atone for his sins, even if it means doing those bad things again. The world of Blood Father is a world filled with gangs, killers, drugs and criminals, a world that John Link is all to familiar with and not that far removed from. Gibson is at this best in years playing the hardened ex con Link with that same simmering intensity and wild-eyed look that he's been perfecting since Mad Max.

The film contains some gorgeous cinematography reminiscent of old Sergio Leone westerns and more recent desert thrillers like No Country for Old Men. The supporting cast around Gibson and Moriarity is fantastic as well. William H. Macy steals his few scenes as Gibson's sponsor/best friend, Diego Luna is great as the main villain, and Michael Parks is extremely entertaining as a sociopathic ex Nazi and former colleague of Link's. The biggest problem with Blood Father is the extremely limited release the studio slapped it with (no doubt a lingering middle finger to Mel I'm sure). If you can catch it on the big screen you absolutely have to see it but if not definitely watch it on VOD. Blood Father is the kind of lurid, pulpy, vengeance flick that was so popular in the 80's and 90's, which in a summer filled with bloated CGI filled blockbusters is a welcome sight. It's a simple action thriller about a guy with a damaged past just looking for a little redemption. Is it art-imitating life? Possibly, either way it's an awesome time that's not to be missed.
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8/10
Autistic Reviewers Opinion Of This Movie.
autisticreviewers26 August 2016
"An ex-con reunites with his estranged wayward 16-year old daughter to protect her from drug dealers who are trying to kill her." Honestly, Mel Gibson steals the show in playing Link, a man who's had a huge history of making mistakes and became an alcoholic. Mel Gibson just keeps on proving more and more that he's not only a great actor, but a total badass! Erin Moriarty who plays Lydia (the daughter) is also really good She comes across as annoying, but I think that's kind of the point. We see a huge change in her character as the film progresses. William H. Macy was also really good in this role, and to be honest there needed to be more done with him. Same with Diego Luna. He plays a great villain, but with very little screen time.

While the movie focuses more on the drama side of things, the movie does have its great moments of suspense and action. The whole movie felt like it had a 90's feel to it, and not a bad thing! All in all, is worth your money and worth seeing Gibson in action..yet again. Let's forgive Mel for what he did in the past and let him be the greatest actor that ever lived! 4/5 stars, 8/10. The Autistic Reviewers.
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10/10
One of the best films of 2016!
TheTopDawgCritic4 August 2017
WOW! Mel's still got it!

WHY has this film never been promoted or advertised? I have never heard of it and just randomly came upon it.

I have to say, it's one of the best movies of 2016 and one of Mel's best films - right up there with Mad Max!

Great work guys!

Loved it - it's a 10/10 from me!
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8/10
Simple, straightforward, good enough. Mel is back!
Tehmeh22 October 2016
I was hoping for "Blood Father" to be the gritty action movie of the year. My love for Mel Gibson may have something to do with those hopes, and I've always liked old-fashioned and simple violent movies. Not always like those of the '80s, but more like those of the '70s where everything isn't just a one-liner.

Turns out "Blood Father" isn't the action movie of the year, at times it's barely an action movie at all. It's not very intelligent and it can be a little inconsistent. It has flaws, but luckily it's so straightforward and aware of what it wants to be that I can forgive plenty. It doesn't bother with deep messages, and the exposition comes more or less naturally with good performances without forcing itself too much on you. It has dumb bluntness to it, but it's still subtle enough to not dwell in everything it brings up. That is a good thing. In most movies like this, people dance around certain events or themes. Movies tend to make big deals of them, and often they don't know when to stop, making everything feel forced and manipulative. In "Blood Father" you don't get that. Many people might find it boring or even pointless, but I find it charming and natural. It's not interested in forcing you to care. Either you do or you don't.

"Blood Father" is almost like a road trip movie, and there isn't as much action as you'd probably hope. But when there is, it's quite good. It's gritty, it's bloody and there is no over-stylized choreography involved. Not to say that some of it isn't impressive, because I surely felt the "punch" in it. When something brutal happens, the movie doesn't shove your face in it. It happened, it was there, but now it's time to move on. I like when movies don't exploit their strengths. The action, as well as everything else, is very well shot. The intensity is there, shots are well framed and the camera-work is effective. To top it all, just the sight of Mel Gibson elevates the movie every time he's on screen.

Mel Gibson is an ex-con with a shitty tattoo parlor. He certainly looks the part. He's got the beard, the crazy eyes, the tats and the body mass. Whatever you think about him, he has the capability to make any movie better, and this is no exception. He seems to do it with ease, because he's a natural talent. Usually the best "Mel moments" are those where nothing is seemingly even happening. It can be just a way how he delivers one word of dialogue or how he looks at a person. His body language and facial expression is always engaging. Little things like that make a huge difference. So yes, Mel Gibson is the best thing about this movie.

But then there's also Erin Moriarty, who plays Gibson's long-lost daughter. I can't say that I became a fan, but she certainly delivers. She plays the part of a young woman who's very lost and carries the impression of a floozy. They never go overboard with it, and you get kind of attached to her. Not very attached, because that's one problem I'll get to, but enough. She also doesn't complain and whine about daddy issues and feelings all the time, which is something I've come to expect with these characters in these movies. In the end, she plays well off of Gibson and avoids being a stereotype. Well done.

All the other actors are good too. Perhaps the highlight is Michael Parks as an almost-senile old biker who makes his money selling nazi memorabilia to certain people. Michael Parks is always great, and he isn't afraid to take all kinds of roles - in fact, his roles tend to be about repulsive assholes nowadays! We get William H. Macy and Dale Dickey too, and they're good with what they get.

So everyone is good in it. Where does the movie go wrong? It doesn't quite get you invested. While it is very straightforward and much time isn't wasted on all sorts of crap, you get the feeling that you wanted to care about these characters a bit more, maybe have a few more intense scenes with them and make the movie a big tighter. Also, sometimes it seems like the character writing isn't very consistent. For example: at one moment, Gibson may be a guilt-ridden man, trying to stay out of trouble and give his daughter some advice on life. The very next moment he could not care less about anything and is borderline reckless. The contrast isn't quite that obvious, and I did exaggerate, but it's there. It doesn't ruin the movie though, and much of it can be explained by his character itself.

In the end "Blood Father" is very simple. You get from A to B, and even if some emotional attachment and tight consistency may be lost in the way, you will surely get to B. Even if it seems like you're not getting the amount of action you hoped for, just wait when you get to B. About B, "Blood Father" is almost like a B-movie, but not quite. It's a very non-pretentious film; it isn't concerned with moral messages, plot twists, political correctness or PG-13 ratings. It dares to be its simple self, and Mel Gibson alone is a good reason to see it. Just don't expect a cult classic, adjust your expectations, and you will enjoy it for what it is. Recommended for fans of old-fashioned, small-scaled action movies that are rough around the edges.
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9/10
Reminiscent of the Old 80's Gritty Action Films
themovieparadise27 August 2016
This film is essentially Gibson's Taken. It has a very similar plot, but I think this is a superior film. While Taken probably has better action, it's a pretty shallow film in terms of an emotional core or character development. Blood Father works first as a drama rather than an action movie. At the center of the film is a broken man trying to fix his life, and trying to reconnect with his daughter whom he has hurt through his own poor decisions. And that maintains as the film's core throughout the action beats. Director Jean-Francois Richet does a great job pacing the movie, allowing for enough character development in the beginning of the movie so that you can become attached to these characters...
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7/10
Blood Father
phubbs25 October 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Apparently this movie is based on a novel of the same name and a French action thriller. I did not know this and I'm surprised. Surprised that's its a French made movie because I certainly didn't get that vibe in the trailers. And I'm surprised at yet another novel adaptation, like almost every other flick!

Again the plot is nothing really original (a rarity these days), its main hook is the fact we see old Mel Gibson back in action again. The plot starts with Lydia (Erin Moriarty) who is in a relationship with a gang leader called Jonah (Diego Luna). During a hit on some tenants Jonah claims stole money from them, Lydia accidentally shoots Jonah. Thinking she's killed him she runs off and gets in contact with her ex-convict father John (Gibson). Lydia explains the situation and John decides to look after Lydia at his trailer house in the middle of nowhere (hoping no one will find them). Alas Jonah's gang members come after Lydia and drag John into the fray. What follows is a somewhat slow moving chase thriller as John must protect Lydia from the gang out for revenge.

I think the problem with this movie is the fact it doesn't really offer anything new (plus it literally feels like it could be another movie about old man Wolverine/Logan). Gibson's character is your standard gruff, hardassed, tattooed, ex-con who's turned his life around and deep down has a good heart. His slutty looking daughter Lydia is your typical slutty looking mouthy teen, who has gotten herself into sh*t and needs her daddy to bail her out. All the while being somewhat ungrateful about it along the way. The bad guys are your stereotypical tattooed Latino gangsters. And most of the folk we meet along the way are all scruffy looking redneck biker types, complete with some Nazi and Confederate imagery for good measure.

As the story unfolds its not hard to guess what's gonna happen really. Obviously at first John and Lydia are a tad distant, Lydia doesn't completely trust John, and John wants to ween Lydia off the drugs and alcohol she's hooked on. It really is the all the usual beats. John must ask favours from various friends, some good like Kirby (William H. Macy) and some not so good like Preacher (Michael Parks). Speaking of stereotypical characters, Preacher has his own biker garage/club set up where he sells all his (Nazi and Confederate) war memorabilia. You know straight away not to trust this bloke. Anyway as time passes John and Lydia grow closer together until at the end Lydia realises how much she loves and needs John (naturally when its too late).

I guess the million Dollar question was, was the films main selling point of Mel Gibson being the anti-hero protagonist enough? Could Gibson still deliver a knockout? In my opinion the answer to that would yes and no. Lets not beat around the bush here, Gibson has clearly changed his image in recent years. He's clearly been hitting the gym and getting roided up (health issues at his age?). Anyway performance-enhancing drugs aside, Gibson does look good despite the ravages of time on his looks. Strangely enough he actually looks even more badass in his old age and possibly even more of a better fit for an aged Wolverine.

Gibson definitely dishes out a solid weighty performance bursting with raw scary beardy-faced energy. In fact his beard is almost its own character, its an awesome beard, the white patch on his chin being the clear highlight. So much so that when he shaves it off his character noticeably becomes less interesting. All of a sudden we lose the unhinged, wide-eyed, muscular, Wolverine-esque, bearded one. And we're left with a boring looking Mel Gibson from 'Payback' (1999). The thing is I believe you could swap out Gibson with any number of decent action thriller actors such as...Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe or Liam Neeson, and probably get the same result. So even though I liked Gibson in this movie, I'd say his presence wasn't a make or break factor.

Overall I'd have to say I was actually somewhat disappointed with this movie. The trailer was pretty epic and kinda gave me the wrong impression really. I was expecting a more rock 'em, sock 'em action flick top heavy with kickassery. But what you get is a more heartfelt, slow paced drama with the odd burst of action that isn't really that good. Yes its authentic, its not over the top and stupid, but I just got the impression we'd be seeing more of Gibson kicking ass. We actually see very little of Gibson kicking ass which seems a waste considering all that muscle he's packed on.

In the end the movie finishes as you knew it would do, in fact I'm sure we've all seen the same ending before in other movies. I can't help but think this could have been a really stonking gritty action flick, but Gibson wanted to show his acting chops (which aren't quite there I'm afraid). Its by no means a bad film or a mediocre film, its a very solid film, just not as good as the posters and trailers make out.

7/10
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6/10
Blood Father
tr9110 October 2016
Warning: Spoilers
Blood Father has received a lot of good reviews & it was good to see Mel Gibson back in action but overall the film was a bit of a let down.

First of all, the story is very basic, almost non existent. The chemistry between Link (Gibson) & his daughter was somewhat lacking considering he supposedly hasn't seen her for years. They acted like she had gone missing for a few hours and all the trouble with the drug dealers didn't seem to be taken too seriously.

My main problem with the film was the dialogue which had me cringing on quite a few occasions. It was like they was trying to add some comedy to the film and it was all a bit unnecessary. The action scenes were decent and the bit at the end with the explosion and car fight was pretty memorable. Some of the scenery shots were done extremely well also.

But overall the characters were just unbelievable and I didn't connect with either of them. Mel had a few scenes where he kicks ass but the film overall is just lacking in terms of story.

Despite it's flaws, at 85-90 minutes its worth a watch and I'm sure fans of Gibson and action films in general will enjoy it. 6/10.
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10/10
Classic Mel Gibson
WallFlower6313 September 2016
I walked away from this movie wondering how I had forgotten about the 37 years of Oscar worthy performances, directing, and producing by Mel Gibson. He truly is one of the top 10 actors of his generation and only seems to improve on that in Blood Father.

I found myself going deep into my DVD collection and getting reacquainted with the Mad Max of 1979, Martin Riggs of Lethal Weapon, Braveheart, The Patriot, The Bounty, Air America, Maverick, What women want, etc... Every movie a classic on its own.

Erin Moriarty, should expect a best supporting actress Oscar for her brilliant performance.

Lets hope we haven't seen the end of Mel Gibson, he truly is still among the best. Not casting him in Mad Max 4 was criminal.

Blood Father is the unexpected summer breakout film in a season of flopping remakes.
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10/10
Mel Gibson's is as ever exceptionally good
rubysellers27 August 2016
Two thumbs up! Mel Gibson (Link) a reforming alcoholic and parolee who loved his daughter Lydia more than his life, gives up everything he worked for to reform just to save Lydia ( Erin Moriarty) from crazy drug leader Jonah's (Diego Luna) wrath. Performance is exceptional as always when we talk about Mel Gibson. He does not need over the top cars exploding and gun fighting to make the movie exciting. Newcomers Erin Moriarty and Diego Luna also did justice to the role performed. William H Macy's short appearance still leaves a good impression just the same. He could have done more. We need movies like this - action pact, fast paced, emotion and drama driven. You will get your money's worth and 10X over seeing the movie.
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3/10
Bad, bad, bad!
gard_8629 August 2016
I don't often write reviews, but I am gonna make an exception for "Blood Father":

Wow, this movie was AWFUL! Terrible acting, mediocre directing and an unrealistic plot. I really enjoyed the Mesrine movies, but this flick is just not up to the standard you would expect.

I don't know what the worst part is, the total lack of realism, the shallow and dumb dialogue, the clichés and predictability, or the feeling that the director is rushing through the movie, as if he wants to rip off a band aid. Actually the best part about this movie is its short run-time of 1.28h.

I feel insulted as a viewer, that they feed me this crap and waste 1,5 hours of my life.

Do yourself a favour and don't watch this movie. You will regret it.

3/10
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