I first heard of the movie Wrecked back when it was nearing release in 2010. Then, nothing.
In fact, the film seemed to so effectively disappear that I couldn’t help but wonder if it was released at all. I guess it was. IMDB lists the film as having made a paltry $4821 in a two week run on a single screen. Considering the film starred Academy Award winning actor Adrien Brody, that alone is stunning if not unusual in this day of modest or direct to video releases.
Nonetheless, when I spotted the film airing on IFC, I set the DVR to record it, sat back, and gave it a whirl.
So, did the film deserve a better fate? Was it unjustly dumped?
The answer, frustratingly, is yes and no. Wrecked concerns a man (Brody) who awakens to find himself sitting in the front passenger seat of a very bad car crash. The car is at the bottom of a forest ravine. In the back seat is the corpse of one of the other passengers of the car. Several feet before the remains of the vehicle lies the body of the presumed driver.
The lone survivor has no memory of how he came to be in this predicament nor who the corpses of those around him are. He too is injured, and his leg is pinned down hard under the car’s dashboard. For the first half of the film he drifts in and out of consciousness and tries to recall who he is and what he was doing before the crash while trying to simply get out of the wreckage.
Soon, ominous hints as to who he might be appear. He finds a handgun under the driver’s seat and has flashes of memory of a possible robbery.
Is he a bad guy? Did he kill someone?
The questions haunt him even as he tries to escape the wreckage of his vehicle.
I won’t go into too many more details, but suffice to say the film does hold your attention for most of its run time despite the fact that what we have here is for the most part a one person/one setting story with very little actual dialogue and plenty of symbolism. Some of the symbolism, I felt, worked well while others left me more confused than illuminated. Unfortunately, the movie also runs out of steam after a while and, particularly in the later part of the second half, becomes something of a chore to sit through.
However, where the movie fails the most is when it finally does offer a resolution and explanation as to who our protagonist is and why he was in the car. The explanation, unfortunately, is quite banal…almost too simple. It makes you think that this film could have made a good one hour episode of a mystery TV show rather than a 91 minute full theatrical feature.
There is one other thing that I found very bothersome, but to get into that requires SPOILERS. They follow the movie’s trailer…
As the movie progresses, it is clear our protagonist is having hallucinations. While the dog he encounters may or may not actually be with him (I believe it to be a hallucination, too), he also sees a woman in and around his immediate area…a woman he slowly begins to think might have been a victim of his (possible) crime. Considering the film’s eventual resolution and the woman’s actual identity, the way our protagonist deals with this hallucination is very bizarre, to say the least.
Regardless, Wrecked is an intriguing film that, unfortunately, ends with a whimper rather than a bang. Too bad.