It’s going to sound strange when I tell you that this movie needed graphic violence, gore, and generally nasty scenes. I’m going to explain myself, don’t worry. But first, let’s see what we’ve got here. I Came By is a solid thriller driven by excellent performances and sleek visuals. It’s competently made and it’s quite easy to watch. We’ll be following two graffiti artists trying to fight the system until something worse comes along. The pacing is deliberate and steady almost hypnotizing you into submission. So, if you’re looking for a forgettable time-killer that’s still able to hold your attention, you’ve just found it.
The star of the movie I Came By is Hugh Bonneville whom you might remember from the popular British series Downton Abbey. And an increasing number of pretty solid movies. Apart from him, you’ll also recognize George MacKay (1917) and charming Kelly Macdonald (Brave). Her accent is out of this world and I just love hearing her talk, especially when she gets mad. Percelle Ascott was also good as the fit young father trying to turn his life around. And this brings us to the issue of predictability. Literally from the first minute, you can see where this is going and what’s going to happen.
The same goes for any new character or situation. To counter this, filmmakers threw in a couple of really unexpected twists but it was already too late for them to make any sort of a difference. Also, for this supposedly ominous and intense thriller bordering horror, there’s absolutely no violence, blood, or anything of that sort. Now, I’m not some torture porn fan nor do I like to see people suffer but if you’re making such a movie, you should include at least something nasty. We don’t have to see it, we don’t have to hear it, and maybe we just need to see the aftermath. Something to punctuate the seriousness of the situation.
Jay and Toby are two best friends who love defacing rich people’s houses. They brake into them and write their catchphrase “I Came By” in huge letters on the wall. Looking for the next big hit, they stumble upon a former judge Hector Blake. This rich douchebag is living alone in a huge mansion and he’s just asking for it. However, things will not go so smoothly here as Hector has a few secrets of his own…
As you can notice, I Came By features the age-old story of bad guys breaking into an even worse guy’s house. Recently we talked about an Australian horror comedy Dead Meat featuring a similar plot. Other notable examples are Don’t Breathe, Villains, and You’re Next. And while those are more straight-up home invasion horrors and thrillers, I Came By is more of a classical thriller exploring many different issues. Exploring them superficially but at least trying to do something. This is a common problem with these new modern movies.
They’re just trying to do too much. They want to do social, political, racial, and all sorts of other commentaries. This messes with the natural flow of the movie and is more suited for a miniseries than a regular film format. Finally, if you’re looking for something to watch after this one, I recommend The Perfect Host.
Director: Babak Anvari
Writers: Babak Anvari, Namsi Khan
Cast: Hugh Bonneville, George MacKay, Kelly Macdonald, Percelle Ascott, Franc Ashman
Fun Facts: The photos judge Hector Blake has on his mantle are with Tony Blair, Richard Branson and George Bush.
IMDb Link: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt15083184/