Watchin’ Stuff #40

Movie of the week this time goes to Thoroughbreds, a movie that was not at all what I expected. Marketing that calls this a comedy and compares it to Heathers is pretty misleading. There are very few laughs to be found here, and the ones there are are pretty dry. No, this is definitely a drama, one that deals with some pretty dark subjects. It’s hard to discuss the point of the movie without giving a lot away. Let’s just say that this is the story of two young women who become friends, one of which is a sociopath. They learn a lot from each other, and there’s a lot of commentary on human nature along the way, until things take an unexpected darker turn.

It’s fascinating and disturbing, and also oddly touching in the end. I’d say it more resembles movies like Let The Right One In and The Transfiguration than ones like Heathers. Also, some very interesting sound/music design going on here. Highly recommended.

Sorry to say I don’t get the hype surrounding this movie at all. Unsane was painfully predictable, offering no surprises whatsoever. If I told you this was a thriller about a woman who’s falsely imprisoned in a psych ward and we’re supposed to wonder if there’s something sinister going on or if she’s actually insane, you can probably already guess exactly what’s going to happen there, and you’d be dead right because it’s that generic of a thriller. It does nothing new at all outside of the filmed on a phone gimmick. I didn’t feel much sympathy for the main character either because she handled almost every single situation in about the dumbest way possible.

This is a person who goes to talk to a counselor, but then they make her wait an hour after the visit to get taken to a back room to have her belongings inspected and confiscated by an orderly, then locked in by a nurse who tells her she’s about to get a strip search, and only then does she finally say “wait, something’s not right here”, but then still shrugs it off and does what she’s told and still takes a few more scenes to finally realize that she’s been committed. Maybe this is an intentional commentary on many people’s innate willingness to accede to authority figures, no matter how unusual the request, but I don’t much care, because it’s still just another painfully stupid character to me.

It just went on and on like that, and eventually the story just gave up even pretending that anything interesting was going on here and just dove head first into its generic thriller root, at which point my attention drifted away completely and I didn’t even bother watching the end.

Watchable, but not particularly impressive. The Devil’s Rejects is a sort-of-sequel to House of 1000 Corpses, except it completely ditches all the supernatural stuff that appeared out of nowhere in the end of the previous one, along with almost all the campy stupidity, and tried to play it all dead serious this time. It was hard to take it seriously with how awful some of the performances were though. Mainly in terms of the minor supporting characters. Comedian Brian Posehn, for exampleis just absolutely fucking incapable of acting as it turns out. This was one of the worst performances I’ve ever seen in a movie, and I’ve seen a lot of really, really bad horror movies. I have no idea why anyone thought this was ok to leave in the movie. He doesn’t even do anything important to the plot, he just has a completely fucking irrelevant conversation with another character then gets killed almost immediately afterwards.

Really the creepy acting of Sid Haig and Bill Moseley are the only good things here.

I don’t even understand what happened in this movie still. Did all the bad guys come directly from Atlantis? This would mean that there was just a gang of people who looked like outlandish 80’s punks all living in a bunker down there for hundreds of years, all of which had custom cars, motorcycles, and machine guns and stuff? But…why did they look like that and have all this normal 80’s gear if they were from the advanced futuristic Atlantis bunker? How did they even get to the mainland from the island with all those vehicles anyway if this was the case? Or were they all normal people that were just possessed by the spirits of Atlanteans? Would that explain the weird noises they all made when they died and the fact that there were a whole bunch of completely different Atlanteans that only appeared on futuristic screens inside the Atlantis bunker? What was even their plan? To take over the world using just that one medium sized biker gang? I’m so confused. It was certainly amusing though.

Speaking of goofy as fuck action movies, I haven’t seen Face/Off since it came out a million years ago. It’s still absolutely ridiculous, probably even more than I remembered it being. For the most part it holds up surprisingly well despite how stupid it all is though. The only real flaw is John Woo’s usual tendency to draw things out for way too long. This movie absolutely did not need to be almost two and a half hours long. It’s just a dumb action movie with an outlandish, but fairly simple plot, and it could have been a good 45 minutes shorter without losing much. The final battle is just so ridiculously drawn out, with Travolta and Cage having their big showdown in a church, then another one outside the church, then a brief car chase, then a long and elaborate boat chase, then they crash back to land and have one more for-real-this-time final showdown before it’s all finally over. Now that I think of it, Mission Impossible 2’s final battle followed almost the same formula…

2 comments on “Watchin’ Stuff #40

  1. raistlin0903 says:

    I rewatched Face/Off somewhere last year too, and I had pretty much the same feeling you described here. It was still fun, had some over the top action (not too mention performance especially on the part of Cage), but still withstood the test of time. It certainly was too long, that’s for sure.

  2. Peter Saturday says:

    Ha ha glad you checked out Raiders!! It’s a ridiculously fun movie & I also had a ton of fun with Creatures from the Abyss!! Thanks for the suggestion!!

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