Blue Ruin 2013 ****

Revenge is a dish best served cold; for Dwight (Macon Blair), the death of his parents has had a destructive force on his life, forcing him out of relationships and leaving him living as a hobo in the backwaters of West Virginia. The cops pull him in, but instead of calling social services, they inform Dwight that the man he blames for their deaths has been released from prison. Dwight sets about extracting his revenge, despite the fact that he’s a less-than-competent assassin who forgets his keys at the scene of the crime. Dwight’s transformation from shambling wreck to killer is the nub of Jeremy Saulnier’s film, with Macon Blair doing an excellent job as Dwight. As the stakes rise and the body-count rises; Blue Ruin never lets go of stark reality of Dwight’s situation; magical moments like a shaft of lightning reflected in a puddle suggest a world of hidden beauty the character aspire to, despite being doomed by their own predilections to reach.


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