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Netflix Review: Tyrannosaur
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Netflix Review: TyrannosaurTyrannosaur
Netflix Streaming
DVD | Blu-ray
Directed by Paddy Considine
Starring Peter Mullan, Olivia Colman, Eddie Marsan
Strand Releasing
Originally Released: January 21, 2011

In his directorial debut, English actor Paddy Considine serves up the indie drama Tyrannosaur; a wonderful but gritty film that follows the lives of two people and their fates as their paths cross. With an intense storyline with some incredible and emotional punches-to-the-gut, along with some of the most straightforward and brutal performances you will see in a long time, Tyrannosaur is not just a good movie, it is a must-see experience.

Tyrannosaur shadows the journey of two individuals, both wrestling with darker sides of the lives, and what happens when they cross paths. The main character, Joseph, played by Peter Mullan, is drowning in alcohol and depression, aggravated at life – with every decision and action just further adding upon his depression and anger.

Things begin to shift as he comes across Hannah, played by Olivia Colman (who Doctor Who fans will recognize from The Eleventh Hour). After several confrontational moments with some locals, and killing his own dog during a drunken frenzy, Joseph runs into her charity shop to hide for a breath. Hannah, a devout Christian, prays over him – a turning point as her presence begins to bring an element of stability and peace to his life.

Hannah, instead, clinging to her faith, uses her public face to hide the darkness she conceals from the world: that she lives in fear of her husband, who consistently beats and rapes her. While Joseph begins an evolution to a quieter (though still scarred and angry) frame of mind, Hannah begins to adopt the wild frustrated anger he once held, to escape from her own personal hell.

Whereas this short description of the plot explains the general gist of Tyrannosaur, it doesn’t do it justice. This is a movie that just has to be seen to appreciate the depth and intensity of how it plays out. And while the narrative of this drama is of the highest standard, it is within the performances and the direction that make this movie so superb.

Tyrannosaur is the directorial debut of Paddy Considine, one of my favorite actors who some of our readers may recall from Dead Man’s Shoes, The Bourne Ultimatum, and the Red Riding trilogy. Considine displays a natural knack for the director’s chair, bringing forth some intense scenes from his actors, as well as a keen eye for the progress of lighting and camerawork as well.

Both Peter Mullan and Olivia Coleman sell the story compellingly on screen. Mullan, another of my favorite actors, delivers perhaps his finest performance in this movie, bringing an incredibly intimidating violent streak during the start of the film. His demeanor is very matter-of-fact, roughened by life, and angry at the world. Coleman likewise is as intense with her initial “innocent religious” role, evolving into a woman that would do anything to escape her own personal prison.

Netflix Review: Tyrannosaur

Both Mullan and Coleman deliver – BIG TIME – in this movie, and it makes for some incredible compelling viewing, magnetizing your eyes to the screen as they bring forth their dazzling and electric intensity.

The lighting and camerawork, as mentioned earlier, is done in a approach to be gritty and cold – and often gives a feeling of an overcast nature throughout. This amplifies both the story and the performances, helping to form a cohesive structure for the overall story. It is unmistakable that a lot of work went into this indie film.

One characteristic of this film that might come across with difficulty to an American audience is with regard to the accents. Considine embraces a wide range of folks from different areas in the UK, where many accents run quite thickly, and I fear some people may not give this wonderful film the chance it deserves because of this.

Taken as a whole, Tyrannosaur is a film definitely worth watching. The indie film takes elements from dramas, and even a touch of romance here and there, but at the end of the day, it becomes a story that stands strongly on its own – and conveys an intense culturally identifiable tale that is bolstered by memorable performances and excellent direction. Add this one to the top of your queue.

Overall Rating: 4½ out of 5


1 Comment »

  1. awesome movie I actually saw it on hulu

    Comment by Chad Redding — August 30, 2012 @ 9:39 am

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