I love superhero movies, especially the ones that are believable with a hero I can relate to. I especially like it when the hero is a regular guy or gal with a few perks that enables them to fight crime. As of recent, one of my favorites in these genera was Kickass. On the surface, in some ways, with the packaging, promotion and hype, Griff The Invisible reminds me of Kickass. What one sees on the surface and gets in reality though can be two things altogether different. Such is the case here. We have a character we aren’t quite sure of that is either quite delusional or something all together different. The confusion doesn’t stop there though. This movie on the surface may appear to be a poor effort at a superhero movie but it turns out to be a nice love story.
Griff The Invisible is actually a film made on a shoestring budget, it is a superhero movie without the expensive special effects. It is driven more by story and written quite well, especially in its character development by Leon Ford who also directed the film. There are some moments that are lacking, especially in the soundtrack but as some movies go, it is quite nice from a technical perspective.
Griff stars Ryan Kwanten from HBO’s True Blood as the lead character Griff. He is a misfit of an office worker through the day with desires of becoming a super-hero who protects the innocents of his community by night. We see his struggles and poor relationships with his coworkers and his brother. It isn’t until he meets his brothers’ new girlfriend, Melody, played nicely by Maeve Dermody, (a misfit in her own right) that the story takes off. The two falls in love and their willingness to be there for the other, in all things, creates an atmosphere where an action hero movie turns into a good love story. Unfortunately, a love story may not be what people expect when they watch this movie.
Despite what some may expect, I found myself liking the love story in Griff more than I did the hero movie. It is as the two characters develop their relationship that the real chemistry between the actors takes place. Kwanten has done a good job of playing innocents in the past. His portrayal here in some ways is similar to his character in True Blood. While innocent in nature, he does not always make the best decisions. As his love for Melody starts to develop he comes into his own and while predictable in style, it is still done quite nicely and in a respectful way for those watching the film.
Griff touches on the concepts of going after ones dreams and the importance of caring for those who have been hurt. I appreciated the ability to display the importance of one taking care of their self before venturing out to take care of the world around them. It is as Jesus admonished people to do, ‘to love your neighbor as yourself,’ that we get to the place of ultimately being able to love and care for others. Just like Griff in the movie though, there are often barriers in life which seemingly prevent one from loving and caring for themselves. Unfortunately, until we are able to do this, the level of help given to others is diminished. Just as Griff has to learn to value himself before he can adequately help others, so must we. It is through the love of another that Griff ultimately learns the importance of this. For some in life, that love comes from God directly and they are able to recognize it, for others, it comes from another whom God may have placed in our lives to demonstrate that love.
While Griff The Invisible is not quite what I expected, it is still an enjoyable movie. I especially liked Ryan Kwanten. I wish the movie had focused on either a love story or the superhero movie though; it seems to lack direction which in return takes away from the enjoyment and credibility of the movie. While worth watching it is not a movie I would recommend owning. The Blu-ray transfer had little if any value over that of a standard DVD. The visual quality of the Blu-ray and the soundtrack quality have nothing spectacular. There are numerous special features that are fun to watch and the director’s commentary gives some good insights into the film. That all said, I recommend the film as a rental as opposed to a purchase. I enjoyed it but there really is nothing new here to get excited about. That doesn’t mean it isn’t worth watching, I would recommend it for a romantic viewing with a loved one instead of an action movie night though. If doing that, I think most will be pleased.
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