Blood Ties (2013 film)

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Blood Ties
Blood Ties poster.jpg
Directed by Guillaume Canet
Produced by Alain Attal
Hugo Sélignac
John Lesher
Christopher Woodrow
Screenplay by Guillaume Canet
James Gray
Story by Jacques Maillot
Based on Les liens du sang 
by Jacques Maillot
Starring Clive Owen
Billy Crudup
Marion Cotillard
Mila Kunis
Zoe Saldana
Matthias Schoenaerts
James Caan
Music by Raphaël Hamburger
Cinematography Christophe Offenstein
Edited by Hervé de Luze
Les Productions du Trésor
Worldview Entertainment
Caneo Films
Distributed by StudioCanal (France)
Rogue Pictures (United States)
VVS Films (Canada)
Release dates
  • May 20, 2013 (2013-05-20) (Cannes)
  • March 21, 2014 (2014-03-21) (United States, limited)
Running time 144 minutes[1]
127 minutes[2]
Country France
United States
Language English
Budget $25 million[3]
Box office $2,415,472[4][5]

Blood Ties is a 2013 French–American crime thriller film directed by Guillaume Canet. It is a remake of 2008 French thriller Les liens du sang by Jacques Maillot, an adaptation of the French novel “Deux frères: flic & truand” by Bruno and Michel Papet. The screenplay was written by Canet and James Gray and stars Clive Owen, Billy Crudup, Marion Cotillard, Mila Kunis, and Matthias Schoenaerts. The film was selected to be screened out of competition at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.[6] It received a limited release on March 21, 2014 in the United States.


After serving nine years for murder, Chris (Clive Owen) is released from prison in 1974. His ex-wife, Monica (Marion Cotillard), is a drug-addicted prostitute. She has a son and a daughter. Chris tries to go straight with his new girlfriend Natalie (Mila Kunis), but is unable to start a new life and returns to his criminal ways. This puts him in direct conflict with his brother Frank (Billy Crudup), a New York cop. Their sister, Marie (Lili Taylor), and their sick father, Leon (James Caan), want Chris and Frank to get along with each other.

When arresting Anthony Scarfo (Matthias Schoenaerts) at his house, Frank happens to meet his ex-girlfriend, Vanessa (Zoe Saldana), again. Vanessa is now married to Anthony, and has a daughter. Frank and Vanessa get back together again, and she decides to divorce. Anthony gets angry, and he tries to kill Frank. Chris shoots Anthony at the station, and he gets arrested in front of Frank.



Filming started on May 3, 2012 in New York.[7] The first pictures of the set surfaced on May 12, 2012.[8][9] Lionsgate UK acquired the UK rights.[10]


On March 15, 2012, it was announced that Clive Owen and Billy Crudup would star in Blood Ties playing two brothers with Mila Kunis and Zoe Saldana as love interests and Marion Cotillard as ex-lover.[11] Austin Williams will play a younger version of Owen's character.[12]


Blood Ties screened out of competition at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.[13] It was released in the United States on March 21, 2014.[14] The DVD version of the film is 127 minutes long, which is 17 minutes shorter than the Cannes version.[15]


Blood Ties received mixed reviews. Rotten Tomatoes gives the film a score of 52% based on reviews from 52 critics, with an average score of 5.6/10.[16] Metacritic gave the film a rating of 45/100 (indicating "mixed or average), based on reviews from 16 critics.[17]

Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter criticized the film, saying: "The impressive cast makes this French-financed New York 1974-set production watchable but it's too inert to catch on with critics or audiences."[18] Xan Brooks of The Guardian gave the film 3 out of 5 stars.[19] Matt Barone of Complex gave the film 3 out of 10 stars.[20] Fionnuala Halligan of Screen International called it "Heat meets Mesrine via Cain and Abel".[1] Ryland Aldrich of Twitch Film praised the production. "From the wonderfully decorated exteriors loaded with the cars of the era to the record players spinning classic hits, 1970s New York absolutely comes alive", he said.[21]


  1. ^ a b Halligan, Fionnuala (May 20, 2013). "Blood Ties - Reviews - Screen". Screen International. 
  2. ^ Das, Abhimanyu (March 20, 2014). "Blood Ties". Slant Magazine. 
  3. ^ Keslassy, Elsa (January 9, 2014). "French Specialty Players: Lost in Translation?". Variety. 
  4. ^ "Blood Ties (2014)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved March 31, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Blood Ties". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved March 31, 2014. 
  6. ^ "2013 Official Selection". Cannes. 21 April 2013. Retrieved 21 April 2013. 
  7. ^ "First NYC filming location for ‘Blood Ties’, starring Mila Kunis and Zoe Saldana". On Location Vacations. May 3, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  8. ^ Merriam, Allie (May 12, 2012). "Mila Kunis and Clive Owen Kiss For the Cameras". PopSugar. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  9. ^ "Clive Owen and Mila Kunis in BLOOD TIES Set Photos". Film Filia. May 16, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  10. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (May 17, 2012). "Lionsgate U.K. Snaps Up Guillaume Canet’s Starry ‘Blood Ties’: Cannes". Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  11. ^ Kit, Borys (March 15, 2012). "Clive Owen, Billy Crudup to Star in Crime Thriller 'Blood Ties' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  12. ^ Kilday, Gregg (May 8, 2012). "Austin Williams Cast in Guillaume Canet's Crime Thriller 'Blood Ties'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 25, 2012. 
  13. ^ Foundas, Scott (May 20, 2013). "Cannes Film Review: 'Blood Ties'". Variety. 
  14. ^ Gilroy, Amanda (March 21, 2014). "'Blood Ties' Tries to Recreate the Mean Streets of '70s Brooklyn". PopMatters. 
  15. ^ Howell, Peter (June 19, 2014). "DVD reviews: Enemy and Blood Ties". Toronto Star. 
  16. ^ "Blood Ties". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved March 12, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Blood Ties Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved March 12, 2014. 
  18. ^ McCarthy, Todd (May 19, 2013). "Blood Ties: Cannes Review". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  19. ^ Brooks, Xan (May 19, 2013). "Cannes 2013: Blood Ties - first look review". The Guardian. 
  20. ^ Barone, Matt (September 6, 2013). "TIFF Review: Only Mila Kunis' Bad Brooklyn Accent Saves "Blood Ties" From Complete Dismissal". Complex. 
  21. ^ Aldrich, Ryland (March 20, 2014). "Review: BLOOD TIES Knots Up 1970s New York". Twitch Film. 

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