Sunday, September 6, 2009

May [2002]

May is unique...uncomfortable and awkward.  Without boundaries it fuses into so many genres it transcends to that dismal gray area where only flukes or masterpieces lie.  May is that dark poetry you keep to yourself.

May (Angela Bettis) is an outcast - forgotten and looked over in the realm of normal - finding only friendship from a doll, enclosed in a wooden case.  She spends her time alone, or admiring those from afar - until she sees their ugliness.  After meeting Adam (Jeremy Sisto), her lifeline search for companionship and love seem to have been found.  

hen the relationship is heartbreakingly ended May realizes that maybe there aren't any good people, but only good pieces of people..."so many pretty parts, no pretty wholes".

I love this little gem - like Polly (Anna Faris) loves her pussy... - reminiscent to the creepiness, complexity, and oppressiveness of Buffalo 66.  Lucky McKee is masterful - both behind the camera and scripting it's story.  Angela Bettis is incredible - seductive and fragile.  The culmination of tragedy within May is difficult to be aware of, right up until you're amidst it...but when it arrives, it an emotionless landslide of hate, destruction and beauty.


Friday, September 4, 2009

Blood Car [2007]

Every time I hear, read or see the title Blood Car I can't help but memory back to the classic Patton Oswalt stand up routine on Death Bed: The Bed That Eats (1977) ...but Blood Car is so much more than an obscure cult title none of your friends will ever discover.  It's at times insanely hilarious, utterly ridiculous, absolutely retarded, and brilliantly created.

Meet Archie, a tree huggin' vegan primary school teacher bent on creating an engine solely fueled by wheatgrass - as the ever near future (two weeks from now), oil prices have skyrocketed leaving only the wealthy capable of driving.  During a drunken expedition into experimental science Archie cuts himself - the blood from the wound conveniently joining his wheatgrass concoction - miraculously - it is the secret ingredient that brings life into the mini motor.  The accidental discovery turns the mild mannered green activist into a va-jay-jay crazed murderer.

From start to finish the hilarity, gore, and derangement never let down.  The supporting cast is excellent, only outshined by our anti-hero played by Mike Brune.  I really can't say anything more about this little indie gem without making myself sound like a complete pro-cult cheerleader or attached investor - just see it, and let me know what you think.


PS - Try identifying the numerous homages and respect nods along the way!

(The Shining, Goodfellas, Natural Born Killers, Soylent Green, Little Shop of Horrors etc.)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Rovdyr aka Manhunt [2008]

As the Norwegian surpriser Fritt Vilt did two years prior, Rovdyr is a pretty entertaining little survival horror.  No originality, no story, no character development - just plain ol' nasty edge of your seat, tightly constructed murder mayhem.

Four 20-somethings head into the wilderness for a weekend of hiking - and dying.  A pit stop is made, they banter with some locals, pick up a mysterious hitchhiker, and Roger won't let Camilla play with the radio - oh that's sooooo Roger.  Hitchiker vomits, they pull over das auto, and the hillbillies jump outta da bushes with shotguns and knives!  

Fast forward a few minutes and the road crew wakes up in the forest, gagged and bound.  Once free, the four assess the damage and without warning - the manhunt is on.

Like I said, no originality - the whole first act seems pulled from the The Texas Chainsaw Massacre - and unhiddenly Rovdyr is set in the 70's too.  We don't really know anything about the hour - except one guy's a prick, one's a nerd, and their two girl companions may or may not have lesbian tendancies.  Oh ya, and don't touch Roger's stereo.

But all that aside, it's quite a ride.  From start to finish the gas pedal is slammed to the floor.   The short runtime is beautifully pieced, no rests are taken here.  If their not on the run, being cut up, or stuck in a trap, they're hiding for their lives, with hillbilly rapists hot on the scent.

There is some great gore, some great kills, and a dead body with a bloody ass in a tent - hey, I'm just sayin'.  Don't expect to much, and you will be given a solid hour+ of grimy grindhouse exploitation.


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Drag Me To Hell [2009]

Sam Raimi finally returns to the genre that gave birth to one of hollywood's most admired directors.  And that statement alone can either give horror fanatics an adolescent tickle in their drawers or cat piss in the mouth syndrome.  Yes, we've all been waiting Evil Dead 4 for what seems like a bury Michael Jackson already eternity, but c'mon - we're talking about Sam fuckin' Raimi!  Like, gave us Bruce fuckin' Campbell fuckin' Raimi!  Like, gave us blue, green, yellow, fuckin' blood Sam fuckin' Raimi!  Like, BOOMSTICK, Sam Raimi.  I digress.  I am more than happy to give Raimi a have atter before he delivers us our quadripelgicology. 

We open in 1969, in Spain I think.  A weak and haunted young boy arrives at a mansion inhabited by a gypsy of some sort.  He stole something, demons want his soul now and I guess mansion gypsies can save the day.  But naw, they can't - boy gets pulled to hell - fast forward 40 years.

Cute but not sexy Christine Brown is a loan officer in a bank.  Old cranky peasant lady comes in, asks for leeway from a bank (thinks about the current financial system meltdown of the world) this gran's fucked and they take her house.  Grandma gums is pissed, clearly she's no banker thanker.  So she comes back later that day - attacks Christine, we get a crazy as hell underground parking scene - ending with a curse put on our heroine.

From then on it's all popcorn scares and gag humour, PG-13 style.  Christine holds hand with an east-Indian fortune teller, she kills her cat, and what do ya know?  That furtune teller knows the mansion gypsy!  Fast forward 30 minutes, present the predictable and "called it!" twist ending, and it's time for pie.

Drag Me To Hell isn't a complete waste of time - it's pretty entertaining, it's shot extremely well, it's gags were quite Evil Dead-ish, it definately has Raimi's brand farted all over it, but it's too on the fence for me.  I want the tickle or the catpiss.  Give me something poorer or give me some fuckin' horror.