ⓘ Blood Ties (2013 film)

                                     

ⓘ Blood Ties (2013 film)

Blood Ties is a 2013 Franco–American crime thriller film directed by Guillaume Canet and starring Clive Owen, Billy Crudup, Marion Cotillard, Mila Kunis and Matthias Schoenaerts. It is a remake of 2008 French thriller Les liens du sang by Jacques Maillot, an adaptation of the French novel Deux freres: flic & truand by Bruno and Michel Papet. The screenplay was written by Canet and James Gray. The film was selected to be screened out of competition at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival. It received a limited release on March 21, 2014 in the United States.

                                     

1. Plot

After serving twelve years for murder for killing a rapist and murderer he caught in the act, Chris Clive Owen is released from prison in 1974. His ex-wife, Monica Marion Cotillard, is a drug-addicted prostitute. She has a son and a daughter. Chris tries to go straight with his new girlfriend Natalie Mila Kunis but is betrayed and sabotaged in his pursuit of a legitimate business venture. Returning to his criminal ways puts him in direct conflict with his brother Frank Billy Crudup who happens to be a New York City cop. Their sister, Marie Lili Taylor, and their sick father, Leon James Caan, want Chris and Frank to just get along with each other.

When arresting Anthony Scarfo Matthias Schoenaerts at his house Frank happens to meet his ex-girlfriend Vanessa Zoe Saldana again. Though Vanessa is now married to Anthony and has a daughter by him, Frank and Vanessa get back together again anyway, and she decides to divorce Anthony. But in the meantime Frank becomes conflicted over allowing his brother Chris to flee the scene of a felony murder. After Anthony is released from police custody his first act is to seek revenge against Frank for destroying his home life. Chris uncovers the plot and must decide between saving his own skin and stopping Anthony in his tracks.

                                     

2. Production

Filming started on May 3, 2012 in New York. The first pictures of the set surfaced on May 12, 2012. Lionsgate UK acquired the UK rights.

Casting

On March 15, 2012, it was announced that Clive Owen and Billy Crudup would star in Blood Ties playing two brothers with Mila Kunis and Zoe Saldana as love interests and Marion Cotillard as ex-lover. Austin Williams will play a younger version of Owens character.

                                     

3. Release

Blood Ties screened out of competition at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival. A trimmed version, running 127 minutes, was released in the United States on March 21, 2014.

                                     

4. Reception

Blood Ties received mixed reviews. Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 51% based on reviews from 55 critics, with an average score of 5.6/10. Metacritic gave the film a rating of 45/100 indicating "mixed or average", based on reviews from 16 critics.

Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter criticized the film, saying: "The impressive cast makes this French-financed New York 1974-set production watchable but its too inert to catch on with critics or audiences." Xan Brooks of The Guardian gave the film 3 out of 5 stars. Matt Barone of Complex gave the film 3 out of 10 stars. Fionnuala Halligan of Screen International called it Heat meets Mesrine via Cain and Abel". Ryland Aldrich of Twitch Film praised the production. "From the wonderfully decorated exteriors loaded with the cars of the era to the record players spinning classic hits, 1970s New York absolutely comes alive", he said.

At the box office, Blood Ties was a huge flop worldwide. In France, it had only 238.823 entries, although it was screened in more than 400 screens in the country. In the U.S., it was released by Roadside Attractions and made $42.472 over two weekends. According to Box Office Mojo the film made $2.415.472 around the world, after a $25 million budget.