DENNIS SCHWARTZ Movie Reviews

STANDOFF (director/writer: Adam Alleca; cinematographer: Zoran Popovic; editor: Susan Maggi; music: Austin Wintory; cast: John Trench (Roger), Thomas Jane (Carter), Laurence Fishburne (Sade), Ella Ballentine (Bird), Jim Watson (Officer Baker), Joanna Douglas (Mara); Runtime: 86; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Lee Clay/Hayden & Tove Chriistensen; Saban Films/First Point Entertainment; 2016)

"It's both cleverly written and directed."

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

First-time director Adam Alleca is director and writer of this thriller home invasion movie. It's both cleverly written and directed, as well as finely crafted. Though it bogs down at times with too much banter and armchair psychology pronouncements, it still is a fine production.

When the 12-year-old
Bird (Ella Ballentine), a photo bug hobbyist, accidentally takes photos at a private funeral service of hitman Sade (Laurence Fishburne) massacring all the mourners, he spots her and chases after the sole witness. Bird lands in the isolated Canadian farmhouse of the troubled reclusive Gulf War vet Carter (Thomas Jane), who is dealing with the loss of his young son in a freak lawn accident and an impending divorce.

After both men are wounded exchanging gunfire a standoff develops, as
the action gets played out on two different floors of the house. The tension builds as Carter has only one bullet left in his shotgun. Saving the girl amounts to redemption for the brokenhearted vet, who would sacrifice his life for her if need be.

REVIEWED ON 7/17/2016       GRADE: B

Dennis Schwartz: "Ozus' World Movie Reviews"

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