Don’t call it a comeback. But Mel Gibson’s stab at the badass-dad-helping-his-kid action genre is pretty good.

Blood Father

What is it?

Mel Gibson is an ex-con living in a desolate trailer park where he goes to sobriety meetings when not pinning tattoos on locals or shooting the breeze with his neighbor. Then his missing teenage daughter reaches out to him, with some seriously dangerous people out to kill her. As you can imagine, things escalate and our hero has to take a stand to defend his offspring.

Blood Father

I would like this if I like…

Blood Father is certainly worth a look if you are a fan of the recent ‘badass dad’ films that Taken turned into a trend. You can also add it to your list if you are a Mel Gibson fan, particularly when he plays a gritty crime persona such as in Payback and Get the Gringo/How I Spent My Summer Vacation.

Blood Father

Is it good?

If you peruse the IMDB reviews for this film, there is a remarkable number of very glowing once, occasionally punctuated by a few very disappointed counter opinions. Blood Father is definitely not the best movie and gets by heavily on Gibson’s screen charisma alone. Thankfully it still has depth thanks to a reasonably strong cast (though William H. Macy is underused) and a well-paced, even witty story. If you take the view that the movie is an allegory for Gibson’s own recent troubles and quest for redemption, it also sits well.

But if you have little appetite for what is really just a lot of rehashed genre cliches – even if done very pretty decently – this may annoy you.

Blood Father

Should I watch it?

Still a Mel Gibson fan? Then this is worth your time. Ditto if you like a bit of grit and don’t mind a few familiar tropes mixed in with an entertaining 90 minutes. This movie is not nearly as action-packed and violent as some trailers suggest. Instead it’s a nice thriller with a bit of punch and ample evidence that, despite his sins, Mel Gibson can still light the screen up. Blood Father may not be his comeback, but it certainly shows Mel is far from becoming a forgotten has-been.

Last Updated: November 14, 2016

blood father


  1. Found it to be a descent movie. Gibson really did play his role well.


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