Puncture draws you in, and then ends all too quickly.
Puncture is the story of Mike Weiss (Chris Evans), a drug addict and small time lawyer who stumbles upon a case that could propel him and his partner’s law firm into the big league. A dying nurse asks them to take on a case involving government hospitals that refuse to purchase a safety needle that could help save the lives of thousands of hospital staff who are accidentally jabbed with dirty needles. Mike has stumbled upon a corporate conspiracy involving millions and millions of dollars, but could be too much for him to handle, at least while he’s trying to tackle his drug induced demons.
Puncture has a wide variety of interesting (and sometimes flawed) characters, and the performances by the various actors who deliver them are all pretty good. It’s interesting to see Chris Evans in a more character driven drama, considering I’ve mostly seen him in action driven movies. His performance as the tragically flawed lawyer Mike Weiss is good, and we do empathise with his character. On one hand, he’s obviously incredibly brilliant, on the other, he’s obviously a slave to the drugs that he consumes. Unfortunately, I’m not so enamoured with the character of Paul Danziger, played by Mark Kassen. I have to point out that this is not necessarily the actor’s fault, since it seems to be more how the character was written.
Puncture is based on a true story, which is where I imagine part of its strengths, and part of its weaknesses lie. The movie unfolds at a fairly even pace, and is quite enjoyable to watch. Unfortunately it seems to make a bit of a mess of things at the end. An event occurs near the end of the movie that starts, what I can only imagine to be thrilling, events in motion. The problem is we don’t get to watch them, and instead treated to a written description of what happened. They should have just tacked on an extra thirty to forty five minutes and this movie would have probably been fantastic.
The movie also has some slightly iffy cinematography in certain scenes where it seems that the steadycam was broken, since the camera bounced around ever so slightly without having a reason for it.
Puncture is without a doubt aimed at audiences who like dark, relationship driven thrillers. Despite what you may expect, considering this movie revolves around a potential court case, this movie is not a court drama.
The Bottom Line
Puncture is an above average drama with solid performances from the entire cast, that is unfortunately let down by its “based on a true story” roots. The ending is way too sudden, and the film should have taken more time to tackle specific events.
About the writer
Rowan Govender, a writer and artist who is more commonly known by his pen name Rowango, graduated from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal with an Honors degree in Media in 2006. He relocated to Cape Town in 2007 to pursue his interest in writing and film. He is currently employed part time in the Technical Writing industry, while he pursues personal creative projects.