Blow the Man Down begins a bit comedically and could arguably be conceived as hammering the plot conflict with the singing routine at the start by three fishermen. However, for me, it was a pretty enjoyable film. It is only an hour and thirty minutes in runtime and my expectations from a Thrillist recommendation was that of a Dark Comedy. I would say identifying it as a Dark Comedy was a mistake on the part of the Thrillist review after watching the film; I’d say this film is a Slice-of-Life, Drama, and Comedy. It has two separate plot conflicts; the first being the two sisters, Priscilla Connolly and Mary Beth Connolly, hiding a murder that Mary Beth commits shortly after their mother’s funeral due to the murder victim attempting to do something that’s left ambiguous to her (although, as the film progresses, it is implied that it was to either torture or rape Mary Beth to force her into becoming a prostitute). The second plot is the three old women of the small-town versus the mistress of the whore hut of the town that is set in the State of Maine in the US. These two separate plot points coincide on two occasions; one for a major revelation regarding Mary Beth and Priscilla’s mother by the antagonist of the film and another regarding the final scene of the film which – if revealed – would be a major spoiler. Nevertheless, I can say that it had interesting twists and I enjoyed all of the characters and the conclusion of the plot. I didn’t feel anything had loose ends once you put certain inferred information together which forms a coherent picture of the events regarding two murders in the town leading to a third murder.
All of the actors and actresses in this film were phenomenal. The two lead actresses playing Priscilla and Mary Beth, Sophie Lowe and Morgan Saylor, finally get to shine providing dynamic, compelling, and realistic character motivations and conflicts once they’re both given story scripts that aren’t complete shit. Oftentimes, people who give smaller-scale films a chance can’t separate the actress or actor being forced into a stupid role from the role itself. In this film, they both finally get to shine their acting talents and there was not a single moment where I wasn’t enthralled by the story during their scenes. I enjoyed both of their character arcs and honestly, all of the actors and actresses in what seems to be an indie film from the looks of it, did phenomenally well with the material that they were given. Unlike previous films, this one has a competent make-up team that can finally and accurately depict how gorgeous Sophie Lowe and Morgan Saylor actually are. It’s rare indeed to find less popular and too often overlooked actresses and actors finally get to shine from a decent script and story. Both felt very convincing as sisters and setting up the sibling companionship by having Priscilla browse through her mother’s old photos early in the story helped build upon the reasons for Priscilla’s choices throughout the film. Also, unlike most Indie films, this film is shot really well.
As for an overall score, if you’re looking for a slice-of-life drama and comedy about hiding a murder and small-town conflicts, then this story gets a 5 / 5. If you want to watch a decent film for an hour and thirty minutes and you’re okay with anything, then perhaps a 4.5 / 5. My only real small complaint is we don’t technically see the sisters’ reactions to a certain event at the end of the film beyond shock. If this film had a sequel, perhaps with a romance flair with Priscilla cajoling a certain morally upright police officer (played by the attractive Will Brittain), then that would be great; such as maybe having Priscilla convince him to tamper or destroy evidence in exchange for marriage. That would be hot as a sequel. I float that idea around because it’s clear that the Officer’s mother and Priscilla are morally the same by the end of the film and there seems to be enough room for an hour and a half sequel with such a plot.