Tuesday 25 January 2022

REVIEW: Gold (2022) - Starring Zac Efron and Anthony Hayes

Gold is an "Australian Survival" film, directing by Anthony Hayes, who also stars alongside Zac Efron.

Zac Efron in what I can only assume is an attempt to be taken seriously as an actor, is all dirty in this film, dirty as in covered in dirt, dishevelled, grubby, however you want to describe it, it does seem that when an actor wants to move to that next level, if they are a woman, they "ugly themselves up" and if they are a man, they grubby themselves down.

Set in the Australian outback, Efron plays... erm.... "Man One", yes that is how he is billed, who is getting a lift from Hayes, (Man Two). The first 20 minutes is some of the dullest on-screen film I have ever seen.

Luckily after 20 minutes, Man one and two find some gold in the middle of the outback. And by some, I mean possible the largest chunk of gold ever found, the problem is how on earth will they extract it, after trying and failing to pull it out with a rope attached to Man two's truck, they decide that one person needs to stay with the gold, while the other goes to fetch equipment they can use to extract it.

Efron decides to stay with the gold, despite being inexperienced in the ways of survival. And Hayes goes off to get equipment.

What follows, is about an hour of Efron going a bit mad, hallucinating, struggling to survive in the heat, avoiding scorpions and trying to keep the wild dogs away.

The film is deliberately empty, the colours used in filming, to the surrounding, to the dialog. This is a visual film, which at times drags, which is a shame.

There is a twist at the end, because why not, but even with that, you are left with questions, sadly not the good kind of questions.

I won't spoil the ending, but I do feel that this film would have worked better if it was say, 50 minutes in length instead of 90, and was an episode of the Twilight Zone, or some other anthology type TV series.

As a film, it will only really appeal to the festival type crowd.

The Good
Very nicely shot, and Efron is really good in his minimalist part.

The Bad
Parts of the film are quite dull.

This is a good episode of an anthology type TV show, the problem is it is a film.

I score Gold a generous 6/10

Gold will screen in select cinemas from 13 January and premieres on 26 January on VOD