Sunday, October 23, 2011

Jason and Shawn review: Red State and A Horrible Way To Die

Red State

Shaw: Kevin Smith had fun with this and I’m glad he did. He danced around some serious issues under the guise of a bunch of fanatical religious good 'ole boys. I think he stabbed at the increased security, the "increased protection” the U.S. government is slowly tightening around America’s neck in the name of Homeland Security. He just dressed it up with a great shoot out, some good comedic moments and a pretty good cast. I have to say, if I just pay attention to the surface movie, the entertaining "dress up", and don’t dive into the meanings I think he was really trying to hint at, I give it a Good. But I don't want to look beyond that.

Jason: One of the few movies where, once the end credits rolled, I sat in stunned silence for about a minute before going “huh.” Parts of this are very much like a traditional Kevin Smith movie. It's very talky, the camera is rather static, and a lot of the language is crude and focuses on dicks and cocksucking. Only thing is, this time around, the majority of what Smith does isn't aimed at making you laugh. But I'm not sure what he was trying to do with Red State. It's not a horror film. Michael Parks gives a sermon that goes on way too long. And although Smith does generate some suspense, there's few thrills. I'm not sorry I saw Red State, but I am sorry I didn't "get it." And I will never see it again. A Bad on this one.

A Horrible Way To Die

Shawn: This moves at a snail's pace. Sure, there's lots going on and it got me thinking, but the story is "flip floppy" and jumped all over time. I didn’t care much for that. That said, I understand the connection being made here between the addiction to alcohol and an addiction to killing. They are both a disease. To run them parallel was just weird. I wasn’t a huge fan of this movie, although I got its meaning, but that still didn’t help me enjoy it. I hoped it was building to some ridiculous and awesome climax. It didn’t. It was weak and had a predictable twist. At least there was a bit of gore at the end. Almost an Ugly, but just a Bad from this Basement Dweller.

Jason: This movie plays like gangbuster. I can honestly say I have never, ever seen anything quite like it. Who is worse here: Joe Average or a psychopathic murderer? That is the uneasy question this movie asks. And I don't think we're gonna like the answer. Adam Wingard has made a disorientating, uneasy and jumbled film. We're jumping all over time. The movie starts at a point, flashes back, then leaps forward. It's like pulp fiction for the Se7en set. I loved it. I wish I hadn't consumed two pounds of hot wings and four pints before watching this movie. I needed to have my full wits about me. That said, I enjoyed the shit out of it. It's a film-school grad's wet dream, a thinking horror fan's pot of gold, and I dug it a lot. Good for me!

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