EIFF 2013: This Is Martin Bonner

Film Review by Josh Slater-Williams | 25 Jun 2013
Film title: This Is Martin Bonner
Director: Chad Hartigan
Starring: Paul Eenhoorn, Richmond Arquette, Sam Buchanan, Robert Longstreet, Kristin Slaysman, Demetrius Grosse

Martin Bonner (Eenhoorn) is at a lull in his life. An Aussie expat, he finds himself leaving his grown-up east-coast family and moving to Reno, Nevada for the only job he can get after three years of searching – transitioning ex-convicts into society. Through this new position, he forms a friendship with one of the people he mentors, Travis (Arquette), who’s been released into a city he does not know, following a 12-year stretch for involuntary manslaughter, and is desperate for help in getting a fresh start.

Chad Hartigan’s second feature is about people of a certain age trying to start over. It's a very deliberately paced film reliant on subtle gestures and composition work to convey character information. If this makes This Is Martin Bonner sound overly methodical, it’s most definitely not; huge warmth is emitted from beautifully realised performances and scripting. It’s a very low-key work content-wise, keeping to the same register throughout and leaving much open, but its minimalist tale truly moves and lingers.

This Is Martin Bonner has its international première as part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival

26 Jun, 8.45pm @ Cineworld 12

30 Jun, 1pm @ Cineworld 5