KIN – Film Review

Kin desperately makes an attempt to balance science fiction action with a dramatic family story at its core, but ultimately comes off as nothing more than an under two hour bloated mess that is never fully able to balance its sci-fi and family themes.

After an ex-convict gets released, him and his brother go hide out with an extremely dangerous and highly sought after weapon, before a group of mysterious soldiers can obtain it.

Kin is a film that I was mildly interested in mainly because of its lead actor, Jack Reynor. He has proved himself to be an incredible up-and-coming talent, with amazing films such as 2016’s Sing Street, 2017’s Detroit, and, even though I did not like the 2016 film Free Fire, Reynor was still a good actor in the film nevertheless.

Kin (2018)
Dennis Quaid (left) as Hal Solinski, and Myles Truitt (right) as Elijah Solinski in Kin (2018)

He has a wide acting range, too which is impressive. He can go from playing an extremely lazy, punk, but caring brother in Sing Street to a ruthless man destined for blood in Free Fire.

As expected, Reynor is, once again, great here. The only problem is, Kin is not a good film. It was so unfortunate to see Reynor give it his all and be great in a film, but he ended up being in a boring and messy film.

Unfortunately, I did not really care for any of the characters that were in Kin in any way. They are all extremely bland and unlikable at times. In a film where the main message is about family, Kin sure does do a poor job at making us feel emotional or even remotely affected by anything that transpires in the film.

Kin also struggles immensely with trying to balance science fiction with drama regarding family. In addition, these scenes can be a bit jarring. One scene we will see some extremely big sci-fi action scene, and it seems like not even a few minutes later, we are witnessing family drama. It’s all so uneven, and got on my nerves tremendously.

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Myles Truitt (left) as Elijah Solinski, and Jack Reynor (right) as Jimmy Solinski in Kin (2018)

Furthermore, the film does make an attempt at showing us a deeper meaning to everything that is going on, but ultimately fails in the long run. I was genuinely holding hope for the last few minutes of Kin just to see if the story would finally wrap itself up in a moving and powerful way, but never did.

Kin‘s severe lack of focus can also possibly be contributed in part to the fact that there are two directors on the film – Jonathan and Josh Baker. It seems as if the two of them often disagreed on what should and should not be in the final film, and what resulted was an uneven mismatch of various different elements from two different people. If this film was directed by only one of the two, perhaps it would have felt more focused and coherent.

Sure, there are some scenes that are somewhat fun from time to time, with decent special effects. There are also a couple of good performances in the film, particularly from Reynor and Zoë Kravitz. But even though they managed to be good actors in the film, it is just unfortunate that these two great actors had to be in such a boring and messy film.

It’s also edited in an extremely bizarre and bad way. Some scenes that we transition to feel so forced and unnatural in its execution, and left me scratching my head as to what had just happened, and why scenes were cut up so quick and mismatched.

Good performances from Jack Reynor and Zoë Kravitz still do not make Kin a good film, as it is bloated with various themes, has poor editing, and suffers from a severe lack of emotional pull.

Overall Grade: D

MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for gun violence and intense action, suggestive material, language, thematic elements and drinking

Cast: Jack Reynor, Zoë Kravitz, Carrie Coon, Dennis Quaid

Directed by: Jonathan Baker, Josh Baker

Distributed by: Lionsgate

Running Time: 102 minutes

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