Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Michael Matteo Rossi's Shadows

Cody looks at a crime thriller that is now available to watch on VOD.

I have now seen two movies written and directed by Michael Matteo Rossi, and it’s interesting to note that neither one of them has centered on a sympathetic protagonist. The first Rossi film I saw was Chase, where the “hero” was an assassin who had a rule that he would never orphan a child, but was also willing to take assignments that involved killing children. Now we have Shadows, a movie where the character we’re supposed to care about to some degree is Cody (Rahart Adams) – a guy who gets in deadly trouble because he wants to become a meth dealer. 

To get into the meth business, Cody has acquired some meth from the lackeys of criminal kingpin Nicolas (David Labrava). But this isn’t your average meth. This is something pure and potent, never seen before. Some “next level shit”. So Nicolas isn’t happy to hear that it has fallen into the hands of another dealer. To put an end to Cody’s meth-slinging days before they really get going, Nicolas sends a hitman named Dean (Eric Etebari) to kill him… not realizing that Dean is the brother of Cody’s mom, Jewel (Krista Allen). Of course Dean isn’t going to kill his nephew, so he ends up trying to protect Cody from the steady stream of killers Nicolas sends after them.

I can’t say I ever really came to care about Cody’s well-being. My opinion of the guy started out low and fell even further when he asks Michelle (Rachel Alig) out on a date and during the date reveals that he wants her to test this meth with him. I just can’t side with someone who wants to get people hooked on meth. Maybe it’s because I haven’t gotten around to watching Breaking Bad yet. Regardless of this, I did find Shadows entertaining to watch and was rooting for Dean to wipe out the killers that were sent after his nephew, simply because Nicolas is clearly a terrible person and Labrava did a great job of making him come off as extremely intimidating.

I did like the Michelle character and was impressed by the performance Alig gave in the role. I also liked Jewel more than her son and was glad to see that Rossi gave Allen some good moments to play. The fact that Michelle and Jewel both work as prostitutes allowed for The Road Warrior’s Vernon Wells to have a couple scenes as a repugnant john. His character was awful, but it was fun to see Wells in the movie. Other standouts include Francis Capra as Nicolas’s employee Axel, Jazsmin Lewis as Jewel’s friend Shonda, and Eve Mauro and Cathy Baron as psycho sisters Amber and Ruby. Standouts in a negative way were Cody’s buddies Mark and Sam. Well, Adam Carbone wasn’t bad as Mark. The problem is he’s always stuck with Sam, a ridiculous, over-the-top character played by Michael Pashan. Some viewers will probably get a kick out of watching Sam, but I found him to be insufferable.

There are a few good action scenes as Shadows makes its way through its 101 minute running time, most involving John Wick-esque shootouts. The gunfire effects weren’t totally convincing, but I could go along with it, and Eterbari made for a great action hero.

Overall, much like Chase, I found Shadows to be an enjoyable movie to watch even though I didn’t like most of the characters. It’s a solid crime thriller that’s worth checking out if you’re into movies like this.

No comments:

Post a Comment