Out of the Blue (Aramoana) (2007)
Average Rating: 6.9/10
Reviews Counted: 24
Fresh: 20 | Rotten: 4
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 6.3/10
Critic Reviews: 7
Fresh: 5 | Rotten: 2
No consensus yet.
Average Rating: 3.8/5
User Ratings: 2,541
Out of the Blue, New Zealand writer-director Robert Sarkies' long-awaited follow-up to his 1999 feature debut, Scarfies, recreates the events that led up to and surrounded David Gray's November 13, 1990 mass murder of 13 locals in the town of Aramoana, New Zealand. Sarkies, however, approaches the material not as exploitation nor as an action picture, but -- like Terrence Malick in his 1973 true crime picture Badlands -- as an understated and detached drama. Sarkies uses a contemplative and
Oct 19, 2007 Wide
Jun 17, 2008
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The usual dramatic affectations applied to such true-life material are largely absent; instead, Sarkies focuses on various quotidian elements that take on weight as the inevitable draws closer.
Sarkies avoids the genre's conventional trappings and prefers instead to concentrate on the ways in which the people of Aramoana deal with the unfolding event.
Robert Sarkies' dramatization of that event is as sensitive to its subject as it is stark in its rendering.
Without such thematic resonance, it plays like a more elaborate version of one of the dramatic re-creations seen on any number of true-crime television programs.
Like Steven Spielberg's historical epics, the film shows the nastiest incidents from a great distance, or cuts away before a bullet's impact to show an onlooker's shocked reaction. The director confronts horror without wallowing in it.
A claustrophobic dramatic reconstruction of a 22-hour shooting spree in the sleepy coastal town of Aramoana, New Zealand, that left 13 people dead.
Brilliantly directed, thoroughly gripping thriller that is both deeply moving and genuinely terrifying -- this is one of the best films of the year.
This is not a feel-good movie by any stretch, but it gets amazing marks on almost every front and really needs to be seen.
Harrowing and heartbreaking, this is the film of the week by many a mile. Despite playing in just a handful of cinemas, I urge you to track it down.
A strong drama clearly dedicated to exploring its real life events, if not hugely memorable in its own right.
Scrupulously avoiding sensationalism, the film concentrates much less on the killer, than on the other locals engulfed in the tragedy.
The massacre still touches a raw nerve in New Zealand but, filming at a neighbouring town and informed by survivors' accounts, Sarkies manages both a sensitive and excruciatingly taut docu-thriller that's refreshing for the genuine weight of its tragedy.
In no way an easy watch, but as a meticulous record of a tragedy and the feats of bravery it inspired, this is an excellent movie.
A haunting, uplifting and never-exploitative portrayal of a terrifying real-life tragedy.
It's not to say that the filmmakers should have resorted to pulp dramatics, but in correctly straining to not exploit their subjects, they forgot to fill in the spaces left behind.
With his carefully controlled pacing and superb use of sound, Sarkies draws the viewer deep into the experience of a town caught completely off-guard by a kind of violence they could never have expected, and won't soon forget.
The persistent attack of the lone, merciless gunman is reason enough to keep your eyes glued to the screen.
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