Kin

Kin

Directed By: Jonathan Baker, Josh Baker
Starring: Miles Truitt, Jack Reynor, Dennis Quaid, Zoë Kravitz, James Franco, Carrie Coon, Ian Matthews, Gavin Fox, Lily Gao, Michael B. Jordan, et.al.
Rating: PG-13
Grade: B

Desperate to help his dad make some extra money, 14-year-old Eli Solinski sneaks onto the site of an abandoned building hoping to find something he can salvage. When he gets there, he finds dead bodies and strange weapon. Startled when someone dressed like one of the bodies approaches him, Eli steals the gun and heads home to find his adoptive brother, Jimmy, has been released from prison early. After Jimmy discovers that he owes a gangster $60,000 for protection while he was in jail, he attempts to ask his father, Hal, for the money. When Hal refuses and kicks him out, Jimmy decides to take the money from the safe at his father’s construction business, but they are soon discovered, and gunfight ensues, killing Hal and the gangster’s brother. Scared, Jimmy takes Eli on the run across the country, where they’re pursued by gangster, as well as the mysterious figures from the warehouse, who are looking for the gun Eli stole.

Despite the muddled, slightly confused storytelling, this movie isn’t actually half bad. At times, it almost feels like an origin story for a dystopian YA novel, while at others, it’s simply a cross-country caper with a sprinkling of science fiction spread throughout. While it’s unlikely to ever garner a sequel, this movie feels incomplete, like it cut off right as the real story was emerging. I’m actually insanely curious as to what the rest of the story is; however, that could just be my inner nerd rearing its ugly head. The acting isn’t fantastic, but it’s not terrible either. James Franco chews on scenery most of the time he’s on screen, and Zoë Kravitz’s character seems to have been shoehorned in to appeal to teen boys, since she serves no real purpose until the very end.

The special effects look pretty good, and the background filler isn’t really noticeable.

Anyone who doesn’t mind a little sci-fi mixed into their action/thrillers (or vice-versa) should enjoy this movie. As stated before, it’s not actually that bad, when viewed as part of the larger picture it seems the writer/directors were trying to paint. Though, at times, the sci-fi angle seems like a bit of an afterthought. Perhaps it would have been better-received if they’d simply chosen a genre and ran with it, instead of throwing the two into a blender and making the most of what came out.

Kin is currently only available free to stream if you have HBO, but it can be rented through Redbox or Netflix home delivery, or purchased at any participating store or on-line retailer.
I’m always on the lookout for new things to watch/read, so if you have a suggestion for me, just let me know!