Monday, 2 June 2014
The Gable 5 starts fast and brutal and then turns tense.
You meet - in a rush - 3 characters. A guy empties petrol on to a woman tied to a chair, and another young woman (Eliza Dushku) runs in. The suspense, and the apparent connexions between the characters, make you watch.
Then the caption "17 Years Earlier" shows on the screen, and of course you jeer.
You know a flashback in the first few minutes is usually a trick. TV uses it a lot. Usually it means the programme makers have flashed you a few moments of their most exciting scene, and they hope you'll stay through the dull majority to see how that scene unfolds and ends.
Thankfully, The Gable 5 is better. The Gable 5's flashback is confidently scripted, shot and played. (The script is by Scott Martin and director Kevin Tancharoen, and Eric Leach does the cinematography.)
The flashback is short, too - so you're soon back with Ms Dushku's character, in the sinister and then exciting scenes as she follows the screaming to the room where the petrol-splashed woman is (Melissa Gomez).
Some one elsewhere said the dialogue was "clunky", though you may disagree. True, there's the phrase "world domination", but Professor Gable (James Morrison) says it so well you don't register it til later.
You could do with more conflict in the scene - the army officer resisting Gable's sales pitch more, perhaps - and "What compound?" is an obvious line.
Truthfully, Professor Gable appears to be in conflict with his conscience - or maybe just his nerves - while the officer (Steve Harris) does get impatient. You can enjoy the cynicism and their chat about "the common cold", and their speech is believable as the euphemisms members of the military-industrial complex might use when talking among themselves.
Gable uses flashy futuristic technology in his presentation - and in fact you can watch the movie 3 times before you notice how sparse the sets are, because all of The Gable 5 is done so imaginatively. You always accept blank or sketchy sets when you're enjoying the actors and the action: later you see bullets flash past, and look through a tracking surveillance camera with blood on its lens.