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When out-on-bail mob boss Bellavance discovers that $500,000 of his money is missing, he sends four hardcore hit men to send a ''loud and messy'' message to the suspected thieves' families. But when the killers invade the Rutledge home, they'll meet the household's emotionally disturbed young son Owen. Owen has a history of violent behavior, knows how to make lethal booby-traps and is about to teach these thugs some deadly lessons in extreme vengeance.
"The Aggression Scale" is about a mob boss who wants his stolen money back and everyone who might be involved, killed. He also wants proof which requires the use of a Polaroid picture of all the killings. After the first few people are killed we switch to a family of four, recently married who are moving into their new home. Each parent has one child from previous relationships, the woman has a teenage daughter who isn't keen on the whole idea and the man has a son, Owen who has a violent past and is on medication to curb his behavior. What the don't know is their next to get a visit from the thugs but what the thugs don't know is that the family has Owen.
A hit at this year's SXSW Film Festival, "The Aggression Scale" tells a fairly simple story, it's slow at first building the story and the tension as it moves along. There's not a lot of surprises here, the few that are there you already have figured out before they arrive but the journey is well worth taking. Let's not kid ourselves here, this is a film done on a low budget but it looks great and the action scenes are very well done. It stars Ray Wise who is always good but he's not the real star of the film itself, that would be Ryan Hartwig who plays Owen. The kid doesn't speak in the film but he doesn't need to because actions speak louder than words here.
Once the plot details are out of the way they film becomes a non-stop suspense filled ride with brutal action and high tension. Let's face it this packs more of a wallop than three Hollywood films combined, it's in your face hard core action. I already mentioned two cast members but I would like to add that the entire cast did a great job playing their roles even the group of hard nosed thugs. After seeing the film there's no surprise that it was a hit at the SXSW Film Festival because movie-goers just don't get to see this type of violence on screen that often, this is a R-rated action/thriller that doesn't pretend to be anything else.
One thing I thought the advertising could of done without was the "Home Alone" comparison, I think it took away from the surprise about the film that was the most important and most fun but don't let that turn you off because this is still a very entertaining film regardless. "The Aggression Scale" is extreme action at it's best, what the film might lack in story it more than makes up for with it's brutal action. If action is what you like and if you're sick of all the PG-13 action films released nowadays then I highly recommend you checking this one out, it's sure to knock your socks off.
Available on DVD and Blu-ray, both come with Special Features that include:
The Making Of The Aggression Scale
Released by Anchor Bay Entertainment
**** Out Of *****