The Lionsgate July 17, 2018 separate DVD and Blu-ray DVD releases of the 2017 drama "You Were Never Really Here" proves that sensitive character studies and blood-drenched vengeance flicks are not mutually exclusive. The film additionally makes good use of the talent of Joaquin Phoenix ("Walk the Line") for playing a sullen brooding tortured soul of little words in this work based on a novel by Jonathan Ames of "Bored to Death" fame.
The accolades this time include Phoenix winning a Best Actor award and writer/director Lynne Ramsay bringing home a Best Screenplay honor from the 2017 Cannes festival.
The following YouTube clip of the "Here" trailer perfectly conveys the spirit of the film.
"Here" is almost pure noir in that virtually every event occurs after dark on gritty New York streets. This highly silent film that largely has Joe go about his dirty business without being seen by those around him opens in typical fashion for this sub-genre. This pitch-dark knight finishes up work before going on to his second job as the caretaker to senile and difficult "Joe's Mother" (Judith Roberts).
It is equally typical that we see Joe collect payment for his most recent project and get word of a new job from the intermediary between our hero and his employer. An incident during this visit provides foreshadowing that Joe regrets ignoring.
The mission that Joe chooses to accept involves rescuing the mid-teen daughter of a state senator, who is the middle-aged son of a wealthy man.
The real fun begins when Joe intercepts the poor pervert who is leaving the location of the icky business where the daughter is white slave labor. These leads to a violent rescue that does not phase the "seen it all before" Joe.
More creepiness ensues when the desk clerk at a hot-sheets hotel does not seem to even literally blink when Joe checks in with a clearly shell-shocked tween girl, It is equally clear that the reason for that visit is of absolutely no concern to this guy who merely collects the money and hands out room keys.
Our unlikely friends learning of shocking events starts the final roller coaster ride of "Here." Joe next opens the hotel room door to be greeted with here's blood in your eye. He then makes his established and new rounds only to find that someone always is one step ahead of him.
The final showdown occurs when the cylinders fully start clicking in the brain of Joe. This bloodshed seemingly leads to more normalcy only to find that Ramsay and Ames have one more dark-humor trick up their sleeves. Suffice it to say that the final minutes pay homage to "Death" fellow HBO series "The Sopranos."
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