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Review: Juggernaut

March 9, 2018

By John Corrado

★★½ (out of 4)

Saxon Gamble (Jack Kesy) is a young outlaw who returns to the hometown where he grew up following his mother’s sudden death, dredging back to the surface problems with his brother Dean (David Cubitt) and father Leonard (Peter McRobbie).

But things take a darker turn when Saxon becomes convinced that his mother’s death was not a suicide, and was actually a murder done to cash in on her life insurance.  As Saxon rushes to unravel the mystery, the threat of violence becomes stronger and his life is endangered.

The debut feature from Vancouver-based writer-director Daniel DiMarco, who has previously only done shorts, Juggernaut is a decent mix of familial crime drama and slow-burn thriller, that has both flaws and some elements to admire about it.

The ambiguous nature of the plot grows somewhat tiresome to watch, and the film runs long at nearly two hours.  While the characters themselves are largely two dimensional, the story is rife with classic and grandiose themes of fathers and sons, and the rivalry between brothers, and it’s a familiar tale that is fairly well told.  Although the tension is mostly kept at a simmer, there is also some mounting suspense throughout, and the film unfolds with a solidly handled neo-noir tone.  It’s bolstered by Patrick Scola’s moody cinematography, and features intense performances.

Juggernaut is now playing in limited release at the Carlton Cinema in Toronto.

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