Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Donna Akersten, Carol Burns, Paul Hanford, Kelly Johnson, Dennis Lili
Director: Mike Newell
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Horror, Mystery & Suspense
Starring Jack Thompson and Carol Burns. Bad Blood is based on the true story of Stan Graham, the New Zealander who, in the 1940s, senselessly murdered seven people in his small village of Kowhitirangi. Graham (Jack Thomp... more »
Outstanding film that must be seen for its extraordinary act
Sam Sneed | Melbourne, Australia | 08/20/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"From British director Mike Newell (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Donnie Brasco, The Awakening, Photographing Fairies, High Fidelity) comes this British-New Zealand co-production made in 1981. It features the career-best performances of Australian actors Jack Thompson and little-known but riveting-to-watch Carol Burns.
The film tells the true story of the the 12-day manhunt for mass murderer Stan Graham in the beautiful, wild and remote west coast of the South island of New Zealand in the middle of the Second World War after Graham shot dead seven men after he refused to hand over his prized .303 rifle to local authorities.
Thompson (The Assassination of Richard Nixon, Oyster Farmer, Star Wars Episode II - Attack of the Clones, Broken Arrow, The Sum of Us, Sunday Too Far Away, Breaker Morant, Caddie, Petersen, The Club, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence) is outstanding as the paranoid loner Graham.
Burns is frightening as Stan Graham's Lady MacBeth-like wife Dorothy who encourages Graham fight back against the perceived injustices and abuse they have faced on their tiny farm on the isolated wilderness of the wet and cold New Zealand west coast.
The film opens with the stunning beauty of the region shattered by rifle fire as the local Home Guard unit prepares to defend this pocket of New Zealand from invasion in the darkest period of the Second World War. The year is 1941 and the war paranoia has affected everyone. But the gun culture of the tiny farming community of Koiterangi is set to explode when Graham's mind is pushed to far.
The massive manhunt for Stan Graham lasted a tense and frightening 12 days as Graham kept eluding police and volunteers, using the mountainous terrain to his advantage, and outwitting them all with his extraordinary skills in bleak but beautiful countryside.
The supporting cast of New Zealand actors is top class. The music score is haunting and cinematography amplifies the mounting tension and splendid isolation of the location brilliantly.
The transfer to DVD is as good as can be expected - the original master print has scratches on it, and was used for the VHS version a few years ago. But ignore all that as the movie is the thing.
This is a must-see film - a brilliant psychological insight into the mind of a paranoid gunman based on a true story of an incident that rocked New Zealand more than 60 years ago and continues to have an impact there today. The performances of Thompson and Burns are quite remarkable and will stay with you forever.
This movie deserves to be hailed as one of the finest ever produced in Australasia."