- 1 hr 52 min
Firecracker is a 2005 independent film directed and co-written by Steve Balderson. It is a noir-style thriller and features a talented cast including Karen Black, Mike Patton, and Susan Traylor. The movie introduces us to Sandra, a former beauty queen and lounge singer who returns to her small hometown after a long absence. Upon her arrival, Sandra is embroiled in a web of deceit, corruption, and violence. She also has to confront her past and the demons that have haunted her for years. The movie's storytelling is non-linear, jumping back and forth in time to give us a glimpse of Sandra's past and how she ended up in her current situation. This method keeps the viewers on edge and increases the suspense and intrigue. Karen Black delivers a superb performance as Sandra, a woman who is strong yet vulnerable, determined yet at the mercy of her circumstances. Her daughter, played by Susan Traylor, is equally excellent, bringing depth and complexity to her character. Mike Patton plays a dual role in the movie, representing Sandra's inner demons and the darkness that surrounds her. His portrayal is both eerie and captivating, adding a supernatural element to the film. The film's cinematography is impressive and contributing to its noir feel. The camera angles, use of shadows, and lighting add to the film's overall mood, giving it a classic film-noir vibe. One of the biggest strengths of Firecracker is its fantastic musical score, primarily composed by Patton. The soundtrack is a combination of original songs and covers of classic lounge and jazz tracks, which sets the movie's tone and enhances its atmosphere. Despite its low budget, Firecracker defies expectations and delivers a cinematic experience that feels larger than life. The movie boasts excellent direction, a strong script, and standout performances from its cast. It's an intelligent film that will make you think, feel and leave you wanting more. In conclusion, Firecracker is a must-watch for fans of noir and independent cinema. It's a well-constructed, fantastic thriller that is both atmospheric and suspenseful. Balderson and his cast created a gem that holds up even today, marking Firecracker as a classic of indie film history.