Solo (Morgan O'Neill, 2006) wr. Morgan O'Neill; Colin Friels, Bojana Novakovic, Linal Haft, Chris Haywood, Angie Milliken, Vince Colosimo, Tony Barry, Anh Do, Brian Harrison; crime; Sydney

Genre by its nature orders the world as a series of tropes, but the great genre directors use these limits to concentrate their effects. Solo uses genre more as a new suit of clothes, to try out. It's O'Neill's training movie, his calling card. There's no shame in that, but it needed to be bolder, more ambitious. It should feel more like someone's life depended on it - and not just the character's. Paul Byrnes, SMH, 8 July 2006.

Colin Friels, who looks suitably frayed at the edges (meant in the kindest possible way), is also a suitably fine actor who can breathe three dimensional life into almost any scripted character, even one as self-contradictory as Jack Barrett. Barrett might well have started out his fantasy life in O'Neill's brain as a private eye; there are even hints of this is the dialogue, with a couple of smart-aleck remarks from Billie Finn (a fine debut by Bojana Novakovic), who is surprisingly well read on last century's hard boiled private eyes. Andrew Urban, urbancinefile.

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Garry Gillard | New: 5 December, 2017 | Now: 5 December, 2017