Here’s a conundrum. Shia LaBeouf delivers a superb performance in a film that is otherwise misjudged on almost every level. All panic sweats and jitters, he is a grenade about to go off, a man whose mind still ricochets with the gunfire he took as a marine in Afghanistan. But is LaBoeuf alone reason enough to watch Dito Montiel’s crude study of PTSD? I rather think not – it’s a film with a laboured twist and a horribly over-designed aesthetic. A scorched, coffee-stained colour palette is meant to evoke a post-apocalyptic future, while elsewhere there is so much soft focus, you start to wonder if there’s something wrong with your eyes.
Man Down review – even Shia LaBeouf can’t save him
LaBeouf is compelling as a former marine with PTSD but the film is irredeemable
Wendy Ide is the Observer's deputy film critic