Grade (A)

A much deeper film than advertised and possibly one of my favorites this year.

“BLOOD FATHER” stars Mel Gibson as an ex-con living a desolate life out in the California desert, when he is contacted my his teenage daughter who has been missing for years played by Erin Moriarty. She has fallen hard, being chased by dangerous drug dealers and to keep her alive a father must protect her by taking a step back into a life that can put him back in prison.

Going into this movie I was expecting it to be Mel Gibson’s version of the over 50 action stars that have been making a comeback in recent years. But I was pleasantly surprised when this movie created a heart-warming father/daughter story, and developed this dynamic thoroughly throughout the story. The writing was excellent and weaves the relationships of the characters and the actual plot seamlessly and even with a short run-time, the substance is high in the development of everything.

Mel Gibson was awesome in this film and shows why he is one of the best at being in roles like these. He felt capable in every facet of the story and he delivers the dialogue with the needed emotions to make each moment land with its full impact.

Erin Moriarty was equally fantastic in her role and the chemistry between her and Gibson completely sold their dynamic. Their characters are easy to connect with because they are grounded in reality with the dialogue never trying too hard. The story developes the backgrounds enough make the viewer invest in their journey.

While this film relies on the drama, there were doses of raw action mixed in and it was excellent. The third-act had me on edge and the violence was ruthlessly gritty, visceral, and perfect for the tone of the film overall. Gibson shows flashes of his Martin Riggs persona and it was perfect for his portrayal of a father protecting his daughter.

There were some highly emotional scenes, several grim and desolate locations to give just enough of an ominous feel to everything and it’s shocking to me this film did not get a wide theater release because it is definitely worth a watch, this film is out on many streaming services and I highly recommend it.

Time: 88 min

MPAA Rating: R (For strong violence, language throughout and brief drug use)