While the past (Argo) and not so distant past (Zero Dark Thirty) all take center stage during the start of award season, another film that fits somewhere between the two hits the DVD market in "Allegiance' by writer-director Michael Conners.
"Allegiance" tells the story of a National Guard unit set to deploy into Iraq during the largest miliary buildup since WW II. Lt. Danny Sefton (Seth Gabriel) manages to elude deployment thanks to connections. He can live with the scorn of his colleagues, but when one of his subordinates (Shad Moss aka Bow Wow) needs help going AWOL, Sefton stands to lose it all.
Conners deftly captures the solitude and claustrophobia needed to pull off this unique chase movie as his gung-ho replacement (Pablo Screiber) will do whatever it takes to bring both men to justice. The movie's premise is just as nearly as attention getting as some of it's well known contemporaries, but the director, who wields a military background, didn't show the courage to run onto the battlefield of more challenging filmmaking. With the talent assembled and the themes that could've been presented, Conners picked the wrong place to go strictly by the book. Nevertheless, the film is good enough to have you look forward to Conners next effort.
Bonus features on the DVD include "The Making of Allegiance, featuring a commentary by Gabel, Connors and Producer Sean Mullin as well as the film's trailer. It's nice to hear from the filmmmakers, but you wish they would've been more daring in their storytelling.
Allegiance - MPAA: Rated R for language (really?), Running time: 91 minutes. Available on DVD, Blu-Ray and On Demand