DVD Review – The Red Road (Season 1)

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Jason Momoa would’ve been a much bigger star than he is now if he’d been born 20 years ago. With the sort of physical presence that would’ve fit in perfectly in the steroid addled 80s and 90s of action films, he’d have fit in perfectly opposite Stallone, Schwarzenegger and their counterparts. It’s why he fit in so perfectly in Bullet to the Head opposite the one time Rocky Balboa. Momoa has that unique physical presence on screen to him that’s impossible to duplicate; the problem is that the modern action film (and star) has changed so much that Momoa’s impossible to deny screen presence doesn’t fit in with the sort of modern vehicles available to him.

See the remake of Conan the Barbarian for proof of a film not worthy of being a starring vehicle for him.

Oddly enough it’s been on the small screen where Momoa has found his biggest success. He had a well received role on Game of Thrones, got into the spotlight by anchoring a Baywatch franchise and found modest success on a Stargate spin off. And on the Sundance series The Red Road he once again finds another great part that’ll be overlooked if Aquaman becomes as defining to his career as it has the potential to do so.

Momoa stars in The Red Road as the mismatched partner to Martin Henderson. He’s a small town police officer Henderson in the midst or a tragedy involving his alcoholic wife. He also deals with issues involving the small town and the Indian tribe nearby. Phillip Kopus (Momoa) is a dangerous member of that tribe helping him. The two have a shared past (having attended high school together) and over six episodes they have to work together for mutually beneficial purposes. Kopus is a wannabe criminal mastermind trying to stay one step ahead of the law, and one step away from returning to prison, and works both sides of the law to keep it that way.

It’s an interesting series, mainly because it feels incomplete at only six episodes, but ultimately what happens from here on out will determine how compelling the first season really is. This is the start of an interesting three to four season of six episodes each, not a complete story, and as such it’s the best way to approach this show. It’s building to a much longer story and this is just an extended opening act.

There are some EPK pieces but nothing else of note.

Starz presents The Red Road. Created by Aaron Guzikowski Starring Martin Henderson, Julianne Nicholson, Jason Mamoa. Run Time: six hours. Released on DVD: 3.10.2015

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