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The Lives of the Saints

Film No Stars

Ouch. The film read well on paper, hinting at some Shakespearean linkage and a strong spiritual story of gangland London. It also boasted great cinematography, as we were told by the director of the EIFF, Shane Danielson, the directors come from a strong photographic background.

Well to be fair the cinematography is quite good and the film does boast some nice looking scenes, but the story comes across very poorly.

The film is about a child who is found by a runner of an East End gang. He appears to be abandoned and as the runner looks to him, his entire life changes and he takes the child to the son of the Boss. Here the son finds that the child is predicting the future through the strange language he's speaking, and without telling his father, the Boss, he begins to put these predictions to good use.

To begin with it was a bit difficult to get a handle on the dialogue. Characters were seeming to make little sense at times, and that was without the bizarre character choices.

It really all begins with Roadrunner finding the abandoned or homeless child and suddenly changing his entire life as well as going against, what we are told is, the biggest Gangster in the East End of London. From here other characters follow suit and make equally strange and quite laughable choices, again without rhyme nor reason.

For me this is really where the story begins to fall apart, in the strange and off character choices, and without any hint at an explanation as to why this might be.

Mind you that doesn't mean that this aside the story remains strong, indeed it is disjointed, leaping from situation to situation, situations which often felt contrived and over engineered as well as appearing out of nowhere.

The film didn't invest in the characters development, and therefore I didn't feel that I wanted to invest in the characters themselves. There was no connection, sympathy or empathy, so when the film enters its closing sequences I found that I wasn't that interested in their fates.

The acting was okay for some of the characters, but I did find it difficult to get some understanding of them and therefore it was difficult to accept whether the actors were giving a good performance.

Overall it's just not that enjoyable as a film. With nothing to pull you into it and everything confusing and pushing you away, there's no desire to stay with the film. It even gets difficult to watch because you start getting irritated at the strange changes in plot and characters.

UK IMDB Film Details
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