Unhurried, Low-Budget Crime Fare…
The premise for Dead Drop, promises hard-boiled, crime-driven action, and while it does indeed provide some great action, it doles it out in an unrushed manner, making it appear pretty dull at times. It’s about ex-CIA man, Michael Shaughnessy (Luke Goss), who is in a plane; 3000 miles up, when his supposed best friend, Santiago (Nestor Carbonell), shoots him in the gut, then shoves him out the door. Michael is now presumed dead by the people he was investigating while undercover, but his bosses want him back in the field. He does go back and starts to hunt down Santiago, but now Michael ends up being hunted himself.
Luke Goss is a capable actor, who I actually remember from yesteryear singing with his twin bro in Gloss (but, that’s another story). He’s admittedly been in some poor films, certainly at the start of his career, and even more recently, in the likes of the woeful Death Race franchise of straight-to-DVD carrion, that grace the bargain shelves of gas stations and Wal-Mart. The last two decent flicks I watched starring the follicly challenged Brit, were Interview with a Hitman and Inside, both of which were also low-budget B-movies. His acting has never been in question, but I’d like to see him get a chance at breaking into the bigtime, as I think he can really bring something to the table.
Keeping Goss company are two other actors who are also decent performers, and appear to cross over from low, to big-budget affairs quite easily, beginning with Cole Hauser, playing Agency man, Dwight. Hauser has been in some truly great movies, and one that I particularly liked, Vin Diesel’s Pitch Black, where he played a junkie bounty hunter, escorting a prisoner from one planet to another. His screen-time in Dead Drop is minimal, but plays the part well. When you want brooding, Hauser can brood with the very best.
Nestor Carbonell, has been seen recently playing the sheriff in the wonderful Bates Motel, where he puts his dark, intense features to good use. Here, we see him playing Michael’s frenemy Santiago, and again is very effective. His character and his acting really helped sell this film, and made it easier to watch, but, as I mentioned, the acting wasn’t the problem.
The pacing was a tad slow for my tastes, but it was certainly watchable. The camera-shake was off-putting when chases were on, taking me out of the action, instead of sucking me in. The overall effect was stylish and gritty, but losing interest in the slow parts didn’t bode well for me. If you don’t mind a slower pace, then it will reward, especially for fans of low-budget indie action movies, who don’t mind questionable survival by gunfights or falls by our hero.