War Comes Home: Our Review of ‘Bushwick’ on Blu-Ray

Posted in Blu-Ray/DVD, Movies by - November 05, 2017
War Comes Home: Our Review of ‘Bushwick’ on Blu-Ray

The grim strife behind societal unrest…

While not without some flaws, Bushwick is a thrilling and emotionally engaging tale of war that hits a little closer to home then any of us would actually care to admit.

Lucy (Brittany Snow) thought it was just a normal day as she emerges from a NY subway on her way home from college, but she discovers her neighborhood in total chaos.  Trying to escape the violence any way that she can, Lucy seeks refuge in the basement of Stupe (Dave Bautista), a former Marine who’s trying to find his way out of town in order to find his family.  As this unlikely pair navigates their city streets and back alleys that are littered with a hail of gunfire and a myriad of explosions they learn that the unthinkable has happened, they are smack dab in the middle of a second civil war as Texas tries to secede from the United States of America.  With clashes between local residents and militia reaching a fever pitch, Lucy and Stupe need to rely on each other to survive, one block at a time.

Using long takes and making this more about the humanity of the situation at hand, Bushwick successfully gets blood from a stone giving us a narrative that is both emotionally compelling with a few to many parallels to our modern political life playing out and the social quandaries of what to actually do when the horrors of war come to your very own neighbourhood in concert with some surprisingly solid performances.

In their second feature effort the directing team of Cary Murnion and Jonathan Milott have crafted an effect tale of social morality on a budget.  These guys focus on the positive and the things that they can do to make this film feel genuinely unique as instead of focusing on making this story on a grander scale we get the emotional tolls of the violence of war in a dirty and unvarnished fashion.  It’s a mean and effective affair from start to finish and the technique of using long takes allows the actors to carry the gravitas of the moments these characters are selling.  Granted the script while working from a solid premise, does get a little away from itself as writers Nick Damici and Graham Reznick try to either jam too much detail or not enough into any given scene making it occasionally messy.  It’s not enough to take you out of this emotional ride, but it’s enough so that you notice even in spite of a surprisingly good leading performance.

In what has to be his first real chance to flex his ‘acting’ muscles, Dave Bautista doesn’t disappoint.  His Stupe is a broken man and fresh into a war zone that wasn’t his doing and now saddled with this unexpected partner his trip to redemption just got that much more difficult.  Rather than flexing and being a big action star, he tears down the varnish and gives us a tortured warrior just wanting one last chance to do the right thing.  Brittany Snow was fine opposite and they had a good dynamic while navigating the city streets.  There really wasn’t a lot of well written characters outside of our two leads but they give us just enough to make us really feel the stress of it all and make us wonder how we would react if we walk out our front doors one day into a warzone against people who are more or less exactly like you.

The picture quality on the Blu-Ray is pretty solid and the special features include a ‘Making of Bushwick’ along with photo and poster galleries.

It’s not one of those movies that anyone really goes out of there way for, but it should be.  Bushwick is a legitimately solid action drama that balances some real world stakes with some down and dirty action at the same time and is more than worth a watch.

Bushwick [Blu-ray] [Import]

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David Voigt, has been a lover of cinema all his life and an actual underpaid critic for a solid 5 years covering everything that the city of Toronto has to offer. He was a content manager in video distribution industry before that and his love of all things cinema goes back to his first moments in awe looking up at the big screen. His 12 years of experience on the home entertainment side of the business have provided him with a unique view on what is worth spending your hard earned entertainment dollars on. Combine that with his unquestioned love of film, David should be your only stop to find out about the best in film, not only in Toronto, but worldwide.