The Movie Waffler New Release Review - RUN | The Movie Waffler

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New Release Review - RUN

run film review
In a small town in the north of Scotland, a father who raced cars as a teenager escapes his day-to-day reality by stealing his son’s car for one last joyride.


Review by Musanna Ahmed

Directed by: Scott Graham

Starring: Mark Stanley, Amy Manson, Marli Siu, Anders Hayward, Scott Murray

run film poster

In Aberdeenshire, the daily grind of working at a fish factory has been the routine for Finnie (a commendable Mark Stanley) since he and his wife Katie (Amy Manson) jumped the gun and had a child before they were even out of their teenage years. The pressure to keep a roof over their heads and food in their mouths has gotten Finnie to realise that happiness might not even be a thing in life, that the goal is to simply manage the general feeling of dismay with the world.

run film review

Having a kid may have saved Finnie from a jail sentence, for he spent his teen years relishing the thrill of a late-night car race, a sensation augmented by the illicitness of joyriding. The routineness of his life - and, in turn, the prediction on which direction this film will go - is zapped one night when he stealthily takes his son’s car for a late-night joyride. You see, the son is also a racer, so father gets to assume his old life through this covert operation. This melancholy idea of family - imagine Fast & Furious if it was a kitchen sink drama.

run film review

Sometimes Run crosses the territory of a thriller as Finnie slams his pedal to the metal and flirts with death, while sometimes it feels like it’s about to transmogrify into a solemn character study like Locke. For my English ear, it was tough to decipher because of what sounded like authentic Aberdeen accents without the provision of subtitles. For anyone who doesn’t have a problem with linguistics, though, confusion may still be the case because Run ends while it’s still walking to somewhere of interest.

[ READ MORE: New Release Review - Misbehaviour ]

There are many films today that sell themselves as an interrogation of toxic masculinity, but it’s time to accept that simply watching an angry or dejected man taking time to reflect and seek redemption just doesn’t cut it. Finnie understands himself differently at the end of this swift journey but anything Run has to say about the human condition is clouded by rough characterisations. The film feels like it was written on a napkin, with a very slight plot and thinly sketched characters. Run might have been a good short film but, as it is, it’s just too short to be a good film.

run film review

Where we should give writer/director Scott Graham some credit, though, is in the technical work of the race sequences. The sound mix and editing of the cars is blistering, really immersing us behind the wheel and understanding the rush that Finnie’s been seeking to feel for a long time. The awesome POVs of the wheel and front bumper are caught in between the surprising reactions of the characters. It’s the sort of work that would reward the director with a studio film like Le Mans '66. Whatever Graham’s next project may be, I just hope the story can match his formal capability.

Run is in UK cinemas March 13th.




2020 movie reviews