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Blind Company

Serves up misanthropy of the fitfully engaging kind.

Cast:
With: Colin Friels, Nick Barkla, Gloria Ajenstat, Kate Rayment, Frank Magree, Sarah Hallam, Paige Siran Rattray, Samuel Johnson.

Aussie minimalist Alkinos Tsilimidos (“Tom White,” “Em 4 Jay”) serves up misanthropy of the fitfully engaging kind in “Blind Company,” a reworking of Austin Pendleton’s miserablist two-act play “Uncle Bob.” Despite Colin Friels’ valiant central perf as a middle-aged man spitting vitriol as his AIDS-related death approaches, pic is dogged by a surfeit of inert pauses in its first half and implausible plot twists in its second. Quietly released Down Under April 29, “Company” appears destined for a modest local run and will make for adequate feevee filler elsewhere.

Holed up alone in a beach house on the Tasmanian coast, Geoff Brewster (Friels) is confessing his homosexual affairs into a tape recorder for estranged-but-supportive wife, Sally (Gloria Ajenstat). Gradually going blind, Geoff gets an unwelcome visit from Josh (Nick Barkla), his reckless crackhead nephew. Early segs in which Josh taunts Geoff and grills Sally about her sex life promise intriguing psychodrama, but the eventual unraveling of everyone’s secrets and lies is more bewildering than compelling. Ajenstat and Barkla are fine; impressive widescreen lensing of windswept sands and dank interiors is more atmospheric than the screenplay. Tech package is decent.

Blind Company

Australia

Production: A Titan View release of a Valarc Films presentation of a Rescued Films production, in association with Maker Films, Scarab Studio. (International sales: Media Luna New Films, Cologne.) Produced by John Finemore, Alkinos Tsilimidos. Executive producers, Matteo Bruno, James Hoppe. Co-producer, Dominic Allen. Directed, written, edited by Alkinos Tsilimidos, based on a story by Austin Pendleton.

Crew: Camera (color, widescreen, HD), Adam Arkapaw; music, Michael Emenau, M. Davis. Reviewed on DVD, Sydney, April 29, 2010. Running time: 98 MIN.

With: With: Colin Friels, Nick Barkla, Gloria Ajenstat, Kate Rayment, Frank Magree, Sarah Hallam, Paige Siran Rattray, Samuel Johnson.

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