5 September 2018 | Bezenby
Vengeance of Mermaid Man
This one is really bleak and nihilistic, so watch out for that. Set during the American Civil War, we have Confederate soldier George Hilton having to go AWOL in order to save the honour of a woman who has just borne his child. George has several problems, however, one being that the army aren't too lenient on deserters, and his lady's father, Sandoval (a very loud Borgnine, just the way we like him!), really hates his guts and wants nothing to do with him. Plus, he gets caught and sentenced to death in pretty short order.
Killing his captor and heading south with a couple of mates, George finds that the town his fiance lives in is suffering from an outbreak of cholera, his missus has just died, and Sandoval has just dumped the kid on him and banished him. Further still, George finds that his kid is starving to death, but no one will feed him as they think the kid has cholera. The kid dies, and George turns to the dark side and starts murdering everyone who turned him away. Is this a Western or an Adam Sandler film?
George gets himself a gang of bandits while on the other side of things Sandoval keeps getting madder and madder and madder to the point where he denies he even had a daughter in the first place (although in secret he's shattered inside that she's gone - nicely performed by Borgnine). Both men are gearing up for a confrontation that they cannot avoid, as both of them have lost their souls...
We all like Ernest Borgnine, right? You can't go wrong with him here, as a stubborn but honourable man consumed by grief. George Hilton too does a nice turn as the loved up soldier turned blank-eyed killer and it's the fact that both characters have more depth that carries the film. Neither of them are particular evil men, but through circumstance they are both turned into monsters.
Good film. Loved the custard-pie fight at the end!
Wait...no...that didn't happen.