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Some films just get missed!
The Claim (DVD)
Member Name: richy77
The Claim (DVD)
Date: 07/05/02, updated on 07/05/02 (33 review reads)
Advantages: Good story, Reasonable Acting, Great sceney
Disadvantages: Not high profile enough
?The Claim? is set in 1867 in a small town in California?s Sierra Nevadas. The town is called Kingdom Come and is owned and run by Daniel Dillion, a wealthy business man. Dillion (Peter Mullan) has great plans for his town and one day hopes it will turn into a successful city. The folk of Kingdom Come respect the creator of the town. Life there is very peaceful and civilised. If someone steps out of line they are punished by Dillion and quickly forgiven.
At the centre of Dillion?s plans for a bustling city is the introduction of a railroad. Realising this would bring better opportunities to his town, Dillion invites the chief surveyor of the Central Pacific Railroad for a visit. Dillion hopes that the surveyor will be impressed with the town, and conduct a survey of the surrounding area. Dalglish (Wes Bentley) the surveyor, arrives in the town and receives a warm welcome from the locals. Lucia (Milla Jovovich), the exotic local brothel owner makes sure that his visit is enjoyable as possible. Not easily swayed by the bribes and smiles, Dalglish sets about his task of assessing the town.
Arriving in town in the same convoy as Dalglish is refugee Elena (Nastassja Kinski) and her daughter Hope (Sarah Polley). At first they look like everyday travellers, moving from town to town. As the film progresses we learn more about their characters, and realise that Elena has an ulterior motive for visiting Kingdom Come. Elena is actually very sick and arrives in Kingdom Come with the aim of making up with Hope?s father. When Elena first arrives we are not aware of her past, but it soon becomes evident that Hope doesn?t know who here father is. After about thirty minutes of the movie it become clear that Dillion is actually the father, and in fact he sold his wife and daughter twenty years earlier. He was offered a large amount of gold for his ?loved ones? and the lure of being rich turned out to be too great. Now desperate to make up for his sins, Dillion se
ts about building a relationship with the pair. This is when things start to go wrong for Dillion, and his whole world turns upside down.
?The Claim? is a powerful epic which I quite enjoyed. The strange thing is that not much actually happens during the movie. We see several people arrive and leave the town, but until the last twenty minutes of the film not much actually happens. Before watching the movie I read the back cover. The description talks about how things gradually go wrong when Dillion meets his wife. This is not really true. One of my main complaints about this movie is the fact that things happen in a split second. The film ends too abruptly and certain key scenes arrive without any build up or mention.
Enough about the bad points, let me mention some of the positives. The acting overall is very good. There are some strong performances from Wes Bentley (American Beauty) and Peter Mullan. Mullan in particular has a difficult role to play yet looks at home as the troubled owner of Kingdom Come. Someone who does disappoint however is Milla Jovovich. As mentioned above she plays the owner of the local brothel. Her accent is appalling and overall she is not very convincing. The last movie I saw her in was Joan of Arc. Her performance in that movie was diabolical and sadly her role here is not much better. One of the most impressive things about ?The Claim? is the scenery. Kingdom Come is situated between various mountains which are covered in snow. Also during the movie we are treated to various other shots which are beautifully brought to the screen. One thing I realised while watching the lovely scenery was that it is time for a holiday