Starring: Johnathon Schaech, Sarah Lancaster, Graham Greene
Director: Brent Christy
Running Time: 87 mins
Blue Ridge is an American film about a detective who arrives in a sleepy town where a mysterious murder has reignited a long-standing conflict between two families.
At times an engaging detective story, at others an unfortunately lifeless affair, Blue Ridge is a real mixed bag that deals with some interesting issues of small-town life, but does so with very little eye-catching energy.
Though the film isn’t a big-budget Hollywood production, it treads a difficult line between a well-made, polished film and something that’s often disappointingly amateurish, less so in terms of production values, but more so in terms of execution of its main ideas.
So, while there aren’t major issues with editing, sound volume or anything particularly distracting, the story is very jumpy throughout, and proves a really difficult film to get into when you just want to really delve into the mystery and tension of the plot at hand.
The most interesting part of Blue Ridge is the way that it deals with the residents of a small town and their response to outsiders, in this case in the form of Johnathon Schaech’s character, who comes in to help resolve the escalating family feud in town.
The problem, however, is that the film gets too caught up in sappy character drama and leaves its perspective on small-town isolationism at the door after the first twenty minutes, making for a fairly dull watch to the finish.
Couple that with the fact that the film really doesn’t manage to conjure up a powerful sense of tension and rivalry in its depiction of the long-standing feud between two families, and Blue Ridge just doesn’t have the intrigue factor to really keep you engaged throughout.
Johnathon Schaech is fairly likeable in the lead role, although his character is far from fascinating, while the movie does little to engender much sympathy for the supporting players, whether that be other town locals or members of the feuding families.
As a result, Blue Ridge proves to be a pretty dull affair throughout that, despite some interesting ideas early on, does little to grab you at any point. So, that’s why I’m giving it a 6.1 overall.