ARROW BLU RAY RELEASE: The Righteous (2021)

EDITOR’S NOTE: This originally ran on June 15, 2022. It’s been updated for the blu ray release from Arrow Video. Their blu ray release has brand new audio commentary by writer, director and actor Mark O’Brien and editor Spencer Jones; cast and crew interviews with writer/director/actor Mark O’Brien, producer Mark O’Neill, actors Henry Czerny, Mimi Kuzyk, and Kate Corbett, editor Spencer Jones, cinematographer Scott McClellan and production designer Jason Clarke; a roundtable discussion with Mark O’Brien and Matt Bettinelli-Olpin, Tyler Gillett and Chad Villella of Radio Silence; a stage presentation and Q&A with Mark O’Brien and Henry Czerny from the World Premiere at Fantasia International Film Festival 2021; the Grimmfest 2021 live-streamed Q&A with Mark O’Brien; the original soundtrack; an image gallery accompanied by the film’s original score by Andrew Staniland; a reversible sleeve featuring newly commissioned artwork by Grant Boland and Oink Creative; and a fully illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by Sean Hogan. You can get it from MVD.

This first feature from director-actor-writer Mark O’Brien (Ready or Not) is about Frederic (Henry Czerny) a grieving man already struggling with his faith who decides to help an injured Aaron Smith (O’Brien) when the man knocks on his door and claims to be lost in the woods.

Frederic and his wife Ethel (Mimi Kuzyk) invite the man to stay, but Frederic soon begins to doubt why the man is there and the stories he tells. In fact, he could be there to test everything that Frederic — a one-time priest before he got married — knows. He’s already endured the tragic loss of his daughter. What can be next?

Filmed in striking black and white by cinematographer Scott McClellan, this movie is either a man of lapsed faith against the very human past sins made flesh or a home invasion movie. It could be both. As Aaron starts putting his feet up on the table, reading the brochure on the dead child’s funeral expenses, asking some very personal questions and perhaps getting too close to Ethel, this film proves itself to be a long simmering and suspenseful effort that isn’t afraid to its time, nor worried about a small cast. After all, there’s so much talent here.

The Righteous is also available on digital and on the ARROW player. Visit ARROW to start your 30-day free trial. Subscriptions are available for $4.99 monthly or $49.99 yearly. ARROW is available in the US, Canada, the UK and Ireland on the following Apps/devices: Roku (all Roku sticks, boxes, devices, etc), Apple TV & iOS devices, Android TV and mobile devices, Fire TV (all Amazon Fire TV Sticks, boxes, etc), and on all web browsers at https://www.arrow-player.com.

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