For three WWII veterans, war was nothing compared to the personal
battles they would face back home.
Written By: David R. Higgins
Directed By: David R. Higgins
As far as Indie films go, The Aviation Cocktail is visually awesome! This is a period drama set in just after WW2 and let me tell you, the attention to visual detail is damn skippy. It's very rare you see indie stuff of this visual caliber. Mark Rutledge simply does a fantastic job lensing the film and all the pieces are in place for an amazing movie. Costumes, set's and even the story line itself. Unfortunately, a few minor instances hinder this film slightly and level out all the exceptional aspects of it. Let's face it though. A four out of five ain't no slouch of a rating and The Aviation Cocktail contains more than enough to satisfy even the hard to please drama lovers out there.
I've already written about the cinematography of this production so now I'm going to pick at a few other aspects of this film. Not everything is perfect. Being a moody drama is one thing; the pacing of The Aviation Cocktail is another altogether. The editing of the production is very well done but the content takes itself way too seriously. I completely understand that the intention wasn't to pen a comedy, but at least a feeling of fun or freedom at times would have fit the bill rather nicely. Not the case here though. There is absolutely none of that. From the opening scene to the very end we have a slow burning dramatic entity with no Ying complimenting the intended Yang... so to speak. There are no "Ups and Downs" just downs... and that hurt the overall appeal. I found the audio and the audio mix more than enough to keep my humble ears happy and the general post production of The Aviation Cocktail was done really well.
Another aspect of the film that occasionally threw me was the inconsistent character portrayals. At times, the cast completely had my attention with some really outstanding chops! Then, there were those few times the acting came off as hollow and scripted. Clearly the main cast was capable of some stellar performances; which they gave at times. Other times however, it almost felt as if the shoot was almost over, everyone wanted to go home and they simply shot, wrapped and left. These instances were few and only slightly impacted my rating of an otherwise excellent film.
In the end The Aviation Cocktail delivers on many levels. The few areas it falls slightly below par are more than made up for by the highlights of this production. I was more than glad to have been able to watch this in one sitting! Lovers of dramatic, moody films will love this and no doubt have a higher personal rating than I wrote! Not into the strict drama? No problem! Enough exists in The Aviation Cocktail to satisfy the majority of us casual viewers. My advice? When you have an extra hour and a half, do yourself a favor and take a look at some of the best Indie film has to offer. Small, petty issues aside Writer / Director David R. Higgins has a winner.
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