West Coast Premiere
After Danny is released from prison, all he wants to do is live his life quietly. Settling into a run-down motel and picking up a low-key, menial job, he spends his days absorbed in the rhythm of washing dishes, freer, but not quite free with an ankle monitor keeping tabs on him. As he develops a friendship with the motel owner’s daughter, Clara, it’s not long before his peaceful existence is threatened and he’s forced to revert to his violent old ways.
An incredible stand-out at 2018’s SXSW, this tough-as-nails action-noir is adapted from “The Dishwasher,” by Dannie Martin and is directed with flair by Jérémie Guez. Lending a realistic and gritty approach to the material, Guez builds a world of weary, broken down men and ruthless, sadistic criminals.
Roland Møller, as Danny, wrestles with his fate, identity, and true nature with convincing rawness and complexity. The film sticks close to him, creating a depth of character often missing within this genre. When the violence begins, it is bone-crunching, eye-gougingy brutal, where every blow landed is felt, with harrowing consequences.
It’s rare for films about brutal and violent men to be told with such contemplative poignancy; A BLUEBIRD IN MY HEART exemplifies the beauty and the beast duality of humanity, with Danny the beating heart of this savage, thrilling journey of a man reckoning with his past. A must see.
Director: Jérémie Guez
Egyptian Theatre: Shudder Screen