Welcome to Blood City (1977)

Article 5085 by Dave Sindelar
Date: 2-20-2016
Directed by Peter Sasdy
Featuring Jack Palance, Keir Dullea, Samantha Eggar
Country: UK / Canada
What it is: Not what it seems

Five people find themselves lost in a wilderness without any memory of their past lives and the only identification is a card telling them how many people they’ve murdered. They find themselves in a western town where a persons’ status is dependent on how many people they kill. One of them begins having flashbacks of this previous life…

Jack Palance is an intriguing actor; even in a role that seems tailor-made for him like he has here, he never quite gives the performance you’d suspect, and here he imbues his role with a touch of comic weirdness. For that matter, Keir Dullea also gives a rather odd performance, and I don’t mean these comments as criticisms, because their performances contribute a great deal to the atmosphere of this rather odd movie. All we really know at the beginning of the movie is that there’s something not-quite-right about the western scenario the characters are trapped in, and as the movie progresses, we learn more about the truth of the situation, revelations that push the movie into the dystopian science fiction popular during the seventies. Other aspects of the movie are less interesting; the direction is fairly indifferent, the script has some problems and the ending it a bit too pat. Nevertheless, the movie does make for an offbeat viewing experience.

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