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Blood Father

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France · 2016
Rated R · 1h 28m
Director Jean-François Richet
Starring Mel Gibson, Erin Moriarty, William H. Macy, Michael Parks
Genre Action, Drama, Thriller

After Lydia accidentally shoots a gang member, she contacts her estranged father, John Link. Link is an ex-con who reunites with his wayward 16-year old daughter to protect her from the drug dealers who are trying to kill her in this rough, gritty, deliriously fun action flick.

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TheWrap by Alonso Duralde

If you can separate the art from the artist — as most of us do at some point, or there’d be almost no movies or plays or novels or music or paintings left to enjoy — it’s a stone-cold gas.


The Film Stage by Dan Mecca

Blood Father, directed by Jean-François Richet (Mesrine, Assault on Precinct 13), works remarkably well as a grindhouse throwback, sporting a screenplay (from Peter Craig and Andrea Berloff, based on Craig’s novel) that’s better than it has any right to be.


IndieWire by Eric Kohn

By no means a great piece of filmmaking, Blood Father nevertheless recaptures some of the rough attitude of Gibson's "Mad Max" days, as he shoots, growls and head-butts through a routine tale of angry drug lords.


The A.V. Club by Ignatiy Vishnevetsky

Without Gibson’s baggage, it’s easy to appreciate the movie as a minor throwback to the R-rated action films of the ’80s and early ’90s, which similarly mixed the very lurid and the very wholesome, even if the action scenes don’t live up to the genre’s heyday.


The Playlist by Kevin Jagernauth

Operating for much of its running time with an equal balance between guilty pleasure grittiness and decent father/daughter drama, the film’s conclusion tips toward the latter in an unconvincing shift toward sentimentality and Life Lessons that not only is out of place, but betrays John’s own code of stoic endurance.


The Guardian by Nigel M Smith

As comeback projects go, Blood Father is stellar. It’s a wonder Quentin Tarantino, the king of career resurrection, didn’t get to Gibson first. The actors completely tears into the role of Link, a battered and disgruntled ex-con. Richet matches him, delivering a muscular and deliriously entertaining B-movie that is sure to play like gangbusters with genre aficionados.


Variety by Owen Gleiberman

Blood Father is trash, but it does capture what an accomplished and winning actor Mel Gibson can be. Just because he lost his bearings, and his career, doesn’t mean that he lost his talent.


Screen International by Tim Grierson

The fading, erstwhile disgraced star’s grizzled, weary urgency gives this story some gusto and resonance, but otherwise, Mesrine director Jean-François Richet delivers adequate B-movie excitement only in spurts.

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