Needed to be more trim and lean to work effectively as a thriller, but then again, the digressions and (indulgent?) flourishes are what have stayed with me. Although Ridley's ostensibly an urban writer, he seemed far more confident with the open rural spaces of 'The Reflecting Skin' than the tenement buildings and concrete underpasses of 'Heartless'. For me his strongest recent works have been his monologues.
Closer to Ridley's stage plays than his work for cinema; the dead London, full of demonic gangs & tribal violence more Mercury Fur than Darkly Noon. Plot presents an obvious riff on the legend of Faust, but with Ridley using genre tropes & iconography to tell a moving psychological story about morality. It's more convoluted than previous, trading pure imagery for twists & explanations, & as such feels a bit generic.
Never quite lives up to the standards set by it's lofty Faustian ambition despite it's relatively unique blend of horror + fantasy set amongst a neon-lit London similarly seen in Cornish's Attack the Block. But it's Ridley's invention and determination to not simply conform to type that proves his downfall; Heartless delivers neither a philosophical message of any weight, a meaningful father/son sub-plot nor the..
Interesting little chiller from Philip Ridley. His first film in 14 years is certainly a pleasure to watch. A big fan of "The Reflecting Skin" I find it so disappointing that such a director has only made 3 pictures. Poesy somewhat miscast but Sturgess quite good with great turns by clarke, sheen, marsden and especially young mistry. Reminded me somewhat of parker's angel heart. Reccomended for genre fans.
It is an utter mess of a film. If it had a twist, I don't know what it was. If it had a message, I don't know what it was. If it was meant to be uplifting, I'm really not sure how. Having said that, it does have a lot going for it. Some amazing imagery, very inventive ideas and wonderful cast of characters (particularly the 'weapon man'). Enjoyable for the most part, the last 30 minutes are a complete let down though