Swerve (R)

Drama 87 December 6, 2013
By Nick Schager
Colin (David Lyons) has apparently never seen a crime film; otherwise, he'd know that you never take a mysterious briefcase full of cash, unless you're actively interested in courting trouble. To his credit, Colin at least takes said stash of money to the police after he finds it, post-car-crash, in a dead man's vehicle. Alas, even that good deed is posited by Swerve as a potentially mortal mistake, since local small-town Aussie cop Frank (Zero Dark Thirty's Jason Clarke) turns out to be a raging lunatic, and his wife, Jina (Emma Booth), is an equally untrustworthy femme fatale. The ensuing mess of complications that ensnare Colin -- a bland good guy who claims that "honesty's one of my weak points" -- are scripted by writer-director Craig Lahiff with dull intricacy, as Colin's each step leads him further into deadly quicksand. The photogenic cast's looks far exceed their featureless performances, and any mood of sunshiny malevolence is undercut by too many studied directorial compositions. The contrived plotting reaches a ludicrous peak with Frank effortlessly leaping from an overpass onto the top of a speeding train. Regardless of its title, it's a film that sluggishly sticks to the neo noir straight-and-narrow.
Craig Lahiff Jason Clarke, Emma Booth, David Lyons, Travis McMahon, Vince Colosimo, Roy Billing Craig Lahiff Cohen Media Group


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