Matthew Pope’s Blood On Her Name is a blue-collar revenge thriller with one helluva hard nose compared to other glamorized action spectacles where consequences don’t matter. It’s homestyle, nasty survival storytelling rooted with family at its core and despair weighing heavy on the viewer’s chest. Jeremy Saulnier comparisons are apt, even if the brutality isn’t as gruesome. I was lucky enough to catch the film at last year’s Fantasia International Film Festival where Pope’s title played to much acclaim, including my full review that praises everything from the film’s unwashable grime to Bethany Anne Lind’s pain-stricken performance.

Today on /Film, we have an exclusive clip that gives you a taste of the kind of cyclical backwoods gut-punchery that awaits Lind’s independent mother.

Blood on Her Name Clip

What’s revealed is no spoiler, as the body Leigh Tiller (Lind) can be seen transporting turns up early within the film. A woman fending for herself left alone by a deadbeat criminal husband, now embroiled in a small-town catastrophe spread by townsfolk whispers. Leigh’s son Ryan (Jared Ivers) is on parole, her father Richard (Will Patton) is the town’s local lawman, and her decision could doom their family name. By decision, of course, I refer to her fit of self-defense that produces the film’s problem corpse.

It’s about the transformation that Lind undergoes or lack thereof depending on your perspective. The way Pope nullifies our cinematic definitions of “good” and “evil” suggests that existence is far more complicated. Every character finds themselves propelled by motivations brought upon by another’s actions, all swirling together in this heartbreaking narrative about how it can feel like there’s no escaping circumstantial fate despite fighting tooth-and-nail. Lind the proverbial eye of this no-luck hurricane that leaves a battered and bashed trail in its wake.

Blood On Her Name will be released on February 28, 2020, both in select theaters and available on VOD platforms. It’s my polite suggestion that you make this greasy-spoon slice of redemption a priority for the right movie night.

Check out the full synopsis below:

The dead body lies at her feet, its blood still draining onto the floor. It was an accident, borne of self-defense, but its discovery could have devastating consequences for local garage owner Leigh Tiller and her son. In a panic, Leigh decides to conceal the crime, cleaning the bloody scene and scrambling to dispose of the body.

But can she actually disappear a man from the earth— from his family— leaving them forever wondering? As Leigh is torn between her primal instincts and tortured conscience she struggles to keep her sins hidden from her estranged father– a cop with a long history of moral compromise — and from the keen-eyed girlfriend of the deceased. Blood On Her Name is a character-driven thriller that explores questions of guilt, moral identity, and the irrevocability of choices in the direst circumstances.

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