Directed by: Andre Welsh
Written by: Andre Welsh
Starring: Geoffrey Lower, Daniel Roebuck, Ron Kaell, Chioke Jelani Clanton, Ahku, Augie Duke, Bob Sáenz, Michael Reed, Ben Wang, John Charles Meyer
Reviewed by: Brad Williamson
Genre: Drama / Noir
What strikes you first while watching this slow-burning drama is the high production value and crisp camera work. I’ve seen Hollywood productions with astronomical budgets fail to capture scenes beautifully as Welsh and his team do here. Whether it’s the opening credits, views from drones, or panoramic cityscapes, I very much enjoyed the cinematography and film editing throughout this carefully shot film. That it was a low-budget production impresses me further and makes me wonder what Welsh might be capable of given the backing of a big studio.
But it’s not just the camerawork that “Disrupted” offers viewers; the acting is also very good. Ron Kaell steals the show, but the entire cast has both individuality and chemistry. No one is over the top and every scene is tuned to a perfect frequency by the actors and actresses who seem to share Welsh’s vision. Everyone remains always on the same page and the interactions flow naturally from beginning to end.
I also enjoyed the storyline and plot, but feel it wasn’t pulled off effectively as it might have been. I don’t need explanations for every action, but by the end it seemed to me no one had any purpose for doing the things they’re doing. There was a lot of dialogue and a lot of characterization, but I wanted more motive and more explanation at times. That said, I was able to enjoy the story; it might have gone in directions I wouldn’t have taken it, but that’s the whole idea of art. Nothing was confusing and everything important was clearly explained; it was also consistent in its mood and storytelling. All together, “Disrupted” was a very well put together and highly conceived film.
If you’re a fan of independent films, noir, crime thrillers, or good acting from a cast you’ve never seen, this film is for you. Overly picky viewers and critics will find holes, and the film wasn’t perfect, but so few are. I enjoyed it as a lazy Saturday night film with a beer and I feel comfortable recommending it to fans of the genre.