DVD Review: Savage


DIR/WRI: Brendan Muldowney • PRO: Conor Barry, Alan Maher • DOP: Tom Comerford, Michael O’Donovan • ED: Mairead McIvor • DES: Padraig O’Neill • CAST: Darren Healy, Nora-Jane Noone

In this impressive debut feature from filmmaker Brendan Muldowney, Darren Healy plays Paul Graynor, a nervy, loner photographer who becomes the victim of a terrible assault while walking home to his flat in central Dublin one night. From thereon in we witness a vulnerable victim transformed into a desperate man on an unfocused mission of revenge. His distorted, unbridled rage is fuelled by a mix of testosterone stimulants and an uncoiling desperation that bursts forth from the film’s guts. Michelle, played by Nora-Jane Noone, becomes Paul’s only tenuous link to the world of normality.

Savage is skilfully photographed and shot in bleeding hues of blue. The night scenes are pregnant with peril and imbue the urban landscape with a growing sense of claustrophobic foreboding that carves its way through the film and into Paul’s state of mind.

The visuals are matched throughout by a cacophonous soundscape that infects the film with a growing sense of violent anxiety. The use of threatening low tones and visceral sound-effects puncture Stephen McKeon’s music score, attacking the viewer’s senses and inflicting a palpable sense of unsettling menace that builds up to the knock-out punch of the film’s climax.

With Savage, Brendan Muldowney has fashioned a story that skilfully draws upon its obvious influences and in Healy boasts a compelling central performance of intense, swelling dislocation. Muldowney is a serious filmmaker and deserves all the plaudits Savage is bound to bring him.

Special Features include an audio commentary by director Brendan Muldowney; Q&A with Brendan Muldowney; and cast auditions.

Steven Galvin

Savage is released on DVD on 14th March 2011

  • Format: Colour, PAL
  • Region: Region 2
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 18
  • Studio: High Fliers
  • DVD Release Date: 14 Mar 2011
  • Run Time: 84 minutes




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