Perrier's Bounty (UK - DVD R2)
Marcus enjoys this Irish crime comedy even is he can't ever remember the title.
Irishman Michael McCray (Cillian Murphy) owes money to gang boss Darren Perrier (Brendan Gleeson) and the deadline's been set to pay it. Rushing around Dublin trying to find a way of getting the money together, Michael gets in with local lender "The Mutt" (Liam Cunningham), on the agreement he’ll rob a house with him.
To make matters worse, Michael's father Jim (Jim Broadbent) turns up out of the blue claiming he’s going to die the next time he falls asleep and Michael's neighbour Brenda (Jodie Whittaker) accidently shoots and kills one of Perrier’s men during a warning beating on Michael.
With the unpaid money owed and a dead henchman on Michael's record, Perrier has no choice but to put a bounty out on Michael's head. Now the strange trio of Michael, his dad and his neighbour Brenda are on the run around Dublin and it's only a matter of time before Perrier’s bounty catches up with them.
Well the award for most forgettable title of the year goes to... Perrier’s Bounty. Seriously, I knew I was getting this disc to review, but I forgot the name of it to look it up before its arrival. Then when it arrived and I looked at the disc I forgot what it was and now even after seeing the movie and sitting down to write this review I struggled to remember what it was called and had to look it up on the internet just to be sure. Perrier’s Bounty? It makes sense after seeing the movie, but really that title is so... meh.
Anyway, moving on from that and not holding the title against the movie itself, Perrier’s....erm...Bounty, that's it, turned out to be quite an enjoyable little dramerdy. The scale is small, the elements unoriginal but somewhere along the fairly short runtime of eighty-four minutes that sort of became its charm. Cillian Murphy played the disgruntled lead character well and his frustrations at the unfolding events around him became quite amusing, especially with another great fumbling Jim Broadbent performance to back him up and a nasty but funny Brendan Gleeson trying track them down.
The small realistic events all add up to a believable little tale and the dramatic elements come with just the right amount of weight so they don’t muscle in on the fun elements but play a big enough part when they need to. Also it was nice seeing Cillian Murphy in a role where he just plays ‘normal’. Not scary plane psycho, or mental Scarecrow, or tycoon’s son hopping into dreams with Leo DiCaprio—just a normal Irish guy, with some witty dialogue and a ‘say it like it is’ attitude towards those around him. It was a pretty great performance really and it would be nice to see more of this sort of thing from him in the future.
Once in a while I enjoy the hell out of these sorts of laid back crime comedies. Movies like Jean-Baptiste Andrea’s Big Nothing, or Allan Moyle’s Weirdsville managed to leave an impression with me, despite not being that great and it’s usually because it becomes less about the low key crime story but more about the enjoyment of being around their characters. Hell, a prime example for me is Welcome to Collinwood, a movie I adore and it’s sort of the pinnacle of this sort of affair. Perrier's Bounty falls somewhere in the middle ground between Big Nothing and Weirdsville for me and that's a nice place to be.
Well I guess it’s the Irish funding and the Dublin setting that dictated that everyone was going to wear dark green in this movie. The colour is literally everywhere. Michael’s Hoody, his dad’s coat, his neighbour’s jumper, Perrier’s suit... I could list them all day. In fact, I think they purposely filtered green into the lens because even the dark blue police uniforms looked green and their blue sirens looked a little more turquoise than they should.
Beyond the green, the image is a little soft, even a little grubby in darker scenes, blacks are never black, they’re either dark blue or (you guessed it) green and really the movie only just about passes from looking like a movie and is more akin to a high end TV production. That said the style compliments the story and makes it feel that little bit more realistic and while it’s not a bad transfer it’s not one that comes with a lot of praise either.
At first I found the Dolby Digital 5.1 track to be a little hollow. The movie opens with a voiceover and sounds like it's hovering in the track with no bass to pin it down. The same went for the handful of louder moments, they just felt empty and in much need of some oomph.
As the movie moved on it improved (or I got used to it). Dialogue was always consistent, the later voiceovers had a nice effect filling all the speakers and filling the room and the handful of shootouts made better use of the surrounds. The score also creeps in a nice element with the bass really getting behind it towards the closing scenes and again while it’s not the best audio track in the world it was more than adequate for the size of the movie.
The only thing on offer here is two lots of interviews from the cast, filmed when promoting the movie. The first is with Brendan Gleeson and Cillian Murphy (06:05) and the second is with Jim Broadbent and Jodie Whittiaker (06:18). They're short and sweet interviews but still a pleasant watch and lastly there’s the trailer (01:50).
While Perrier’s Bounty is an enjoyable romp it’s not quite as effective as the best of the crime comedy genre and honestly could have done with being a little slicker in places, but again maybe the fact it wasn’t so slick was its charm. So rather than idly listing what could have made it better I’ll just end here by saying Perrier’s Bounty was a quirky, fun little crime comedy with a great pace, some enjoyable characters and a satisfying conclusion. I won’t remember the title in three hours but I will remember the film, so all in all this ended up being pleasant alternative to the bigger titles on release.
Review by Marcus Doidge
Suitable only for persons of 15 years and over
Release Date: 16th August 2010
Disc Type: Single side, dual layer
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 English, Dolby Stereo 2.0
Extras: Interviews, Trailer
Easter Egg: No
Director: Ian Fitzgibbon
Cast: Cillian Murphy Jim Broadbent, Brendan Gleeson
Genre: Comedy, Crime and Drama
Length: 84 minutes
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