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HEATSTROKE(director/writer: Evelyn Maude Purcell; screenwriters: novel Leave No Traceby Hannah Nyala/Anne Brooksbank; cinematographer: Ben Nott; editor: Ronelle Loots; music: Paul Haslinger; cast: Stephen Dorff (Paul O’Malley), Maisie Williams (Josie), Svetlana Metkina (Tally), Peter Stomare (Mallick), Warric Grier (Bodley), Jeanne Nielson (Miriam), Andrew Roux (Dib); Runtime: 93; MPAA Rating: NR; producer: David Lancaster /Michel Litvak; Phase 4 Films; 2013)
A mediocre survival thriller.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

A mediocre survival thriller helmed by Evelyn Maude Purcell (“Nobody’s Fool”/”Rush”). This was her first film directed since the 1980s. It could be liked for its vivid photography of its bush country location sites. It’s based on the novel Leave No Trace by Hannah Nyala. Co-writers are Purcell and Anne Brooksbank. The divorced Paul O’Malley (Stephen Dorff) is on a research expedition in South Africa. He takes with him his beautiful Russian girlfriend Tally (Svetlana Metkina). He also takes along his sullen bratty teenage daughter Josie (Maisie Williams) because her mom (Jeanne Neilson) asked him to. In Africa, Tally and Jo clash. When Paul veers off course, he’s murdered by an arms gang led by Mallick (Peter Stomare). The girls are now alone in the desert without transportation, trying to avoid the dangerous criminals and survive. The film has little going for it as far as story and credible action scenes, but it does set an eerie threatening desert atmosphere.


Dennis Schwartz: “Ozus’ World Movie Reviews”