The first half of ‘Hail’ is rendered remarkable by the staggering performances of Daniel P Jones and Leanne Letch and their heartrending portrayal of a relationship between two deeply vulnerable people. Alas, this potent substance is replaced by largely unimpressive style; the jittery camerawork and extreme close-ups - whilst initially effective - ultimately blunting the full force of Jones’ flawless performance.
Blurring the line between drama and documentary, Courtin-Wilson has crafted a brutal yet surprisingly tender work of art. Hail is a tragic, emotionally rich look at a man living in denial, held hostage by his own self-sabotage, anger and repetitive patterns. It begs the question.. which comes first? mental illness or social conditioning/circumstance. Superb performances, photography and score. 4 stars