Sympathy, by first time director Andrew Moorman, is a very rare film in the indie ranks where a director takes a small budget and instead of trying to over-do things, he takes what he has and makes a solid film with it. It’s admirable to see a young director accept the limitations he was given and to make the best of them, instead of trying to prove that they can do anything they want (and more often than not failing miserably). There is something to be said about keeping things simple, and that is certainly what Sympathy does.
A young woman is held captive by a ruthless bank robber who is holding her hostage as he plans his escape. As a game of cat and mouse plays out between the two though a third participant enters, a convict who has no qualms with killing either or both of them if they don’t do just what he says. Suddenly this is not just a game of cat and mouse but a game of life and death, and one which each person has their own Trump card which they are waiting to play. All three of them have secrets they are keeping from the others, bt in the end, the person with the darkest secret may be the one who leaves with their life.
A very well done film, this is a movie that just as easily could been a play. Filmed and performed on one set, the film then puts the success or failure on the shoulders of the actors and the script. The script is very good, if over-written at times, and the acting matches it, again, if over-acted from time to time. The direction is very good and shows a lot of flare but not so many tricks as to distract. The big qualm I have here is that the film plays long and comes very near to wearing out its welcome. There are so many crosses, tricks and double crosses that the movie just feels too long. Some may not feel that way but I felt the length of the film heavily.
An all around solid effort and definitely worth a look for those with a notion. Solid release, and a very well done thriller.
7 out of 10