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Blue Blood (If I Didn't Care) - suspense DVD / drama DVD review
Unrated by the Motion Picture Association of America rating: 2 1/2 stars
Actors: Bill Sage, Roy Scheider, Susan Misner, Noelle Beck, Ronald Guttman, Alex Kilgore
Directors: Ben Cummings, Orson Cummings   Distributor: KOCH Vision
DVD release: 09 December 2008   Runtime: 75 min.
(1 disc)
Format: Color, Dolby, DVD-Video, Widescreen, NTSC
DVD features: Audio tracks (English - Dolby Surround), Trailer, Cast and crew interviews, Behind-the-scenes footage

Blue Blood's original title, "If I Didn't Care," is the more fitting one. The classic Ink Spots song opens the film and sets the mood perfectly. While it is set in modern day, it is an old-school classic film noir that clearly has at least one foot set in the 1940s.

The story: in a rather neat little spin from the standard thriller, the femme fatale in this case is a guy. Davis (Bill Sage) is a "trophy husband" for Janice (Noelle Beck), a successful Manhattan lawyer. Davis spends his days walking the beach and taking care of the couple's home in the Hamptons. He starts an affair with a local real estate agent named Hadley (Susan Meisner), mainly out of boredom but also to basically trick himself into believing he might become a successful real estate agent himself one day (and give himself a feeling of self-worth in return). Fans of film noir should know what comes next: the adulterous couple concocts a plan to bump off Janice, the plan goes awry, and Davis and Hadley are left playing a game of cat-and-mouse with a local police detective (the late, great Roy Scheider).

There is a lot to like about this film. First off, it is beautifully shot and makes excellent use of its Hampton location, as well as some scenes in Manhattan. Second, it is a quiet, leisurely paced thriller that takes the time to introduce all the main characters. It also offers a break from the loudness, rapid-fire editing, shaky camera movement and excessive gore of nearly every thriller these days. Also, like a good thriller should, there are some solid surprises and unexpected sticky situations that occur.

However, other aspects of the film stand out poorly. The main problem is with Davis, as he is too inconsistent a character. For instance, it is never made clear why Davis and Hadley plan to kill Janice in the first place (boredom?), as there seems to be no true benefit to Davis for going through with it. Janice does not treat him poorly, nor does he seem to be hurting for money. Second, there are times in the movie where it seems that Davis actually likes and gets along with Janice, more so than he does with Hadley (again, why plan to kill Janice in the first place?). Whether this inconsistency is due to Sage's too casual "what the hell" attitude or to the screenplay, I am not sure. It is likely a combination of both.

Davis' character is not the only flaw in the movie. For one, though I appreciated seeing one of Scheider's final performances, his character is too "Columboesque." Like the famous TV detective, he starts off-topic with his suspect, acts like he's going to leave, then nails them with the "one more little thing" question. More damaging, however, is the ending. Without giving it away, it comes out of nowhere and seems to have been forced into the story (I remember thinking "That's it!?" when this ending occurred and the credits started rolling).

In short, Blue Blood is at best an "okay" thriller. It is not very good, but not terrible either. It is definitely old-school, with a few neat, modern twists, but too many inconsistencies (as well as a forced ending) keep it from being anything special.


Cast and crew interviews.

Behind the scenes footage (that goes on much too long).
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reviewed by Trent Daniel
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