The Film (0/5)
A young woman (Mira, played by Melody Wiggins) and her fiancé (Daniel, played by Kelay Miller) are accosted on the beach by a pair of bikers. Daniel manages to kill one of the bikers, but the other ends up stabbing him to death, leaving Mira to watch in horror, aaaaand then ride off into the sunset with the surviving biker, because he’s what she calls a “real man.” Except that it’s all a ruse and she stabs him to death in a hotel room. From there she sets off on a murderous rampage, determined to rid Los Angeles of all of its violent garbage people. Meanwhile, Daniel’s brother David (Michael Gradilone) is trying to infiltrate the biker gang that killed his brother and track down Mira to stop her killing spree.
It might sound interesting, and in the hands of another filmmaker it might be interesting, but instead it’s awful. Just amateurish and poorly written, acted, directed, edited, and scored. Surprisingly well-shot, but that’s the only thing that isn’t just downright terrible.
But chances are you already know that. This is one of those films that’s riding that new trend of ironic appreciation, appealing to the it’s-so-bad-it’s-good crowd. And as such it’s kind of review-proof.
“Well of course it’s terrible, that’s why we love it!”
And admittedly, I’m not part of that crowd. I had to start this three times before I could get through it without falling asleep. And with all the praise it’s getting, I can’t help but feel like people are desperate to champion it so they can say they’re in on the joke. It’s like those people who used to run around saying that your opinion on film in general was invalid because you never saw Troll 2. It’s straight-up hipster cinema. And for all the people calling it “the holy grail of holy fucking shit” (the Drafhouse films tagline), or “the supreme masterpiece of no-rules action film insanity” (Hitfix), or “…a transmission from an alien world” (The AV Club) or any other hyperbolic nonsense, I’m just kind of forced to roll my eyes. It’s just a bad movie. It’s not more bad than any other bad movie, it’s not even ‘insane’ – it’s just a shitty, boring, kinda gross movie.
And if that’s your thing then cool, I suppose. You do you. Just don’t pretend that it’s something special.
It’s cheaply made and cheaply mixed, but the people at Drafthouse made sure to put a lot of TLC into restoring a cheap shitty film so I mean it looks and sounds good, sorta?
Continuing on with the trend of putting a whole lot of inexplicable effort into this, Drafthouse actually put together a decent little package. There’s a Commentary with Zack & Bryan from Destroy All Movies, a featurette called That’s So John Rad, an interview with the Director of Photography Peter Palian, and an episode of a local TV Access show that director John Rad was a guest on.
I tried with each of these things, but I just couldn’t take all the self-congratulatory “this is soooooo hilarious” nonsense. Again, I’m not the target audience. If you are you’ll probably find a lot to love.
It’s a shitty movie that doesn’t even have the distinction of being unique, or creative, or original in any way. And it certainly is not, as the back of the Blu-ray case says, “…a pulse-pounding, heart-stopping, brain-devouring onslaught of 80s thunder, 90s lightning, and pure filmmaking daredevilry from another time and/or dimension.”