Nato – Tucker and Dale vs Evil
Keeping with the idea of “films which are so much better when watched with a whole group,” I give you Tucker and Dale vs. Evil. If you consider yourself a horror fan and haven’t seen Eli Craig’s game changing horror comedy, then you really need to step your own game up. Intelligent screenwriting is at a premium here, poking fun at contemporary horror and twisting events to create clichéd horror moments in reverse. What does that mean? Why please, read on!
Playing off the typical “pretty college co-eds are hunted by grizzly mountain folk and slashed apart,” Craig turns the typical scenario upside down by making main characters Tucker and Dale the “victims” of an unfortunate series of accidents that see each stupid kid kill him/herself off. Of course, to the partiers, it looks like Tucker and Dale are slowly picking them off one by one, but to the poor backwoods vacationers, it seems like some cultists are offing themselves on by one on their newly acquired property.
Stars Alan Tudyk (Tucker) and Tyler Labine (Dale) display best bud type chemistry, achieving the same type of lovable bumpkin charm Slither sports. I’ve loved Tudyk ever since his roles in Death at a Funeral (not the embarrassing Chris Rock version) and Firefly, and Labine was a riot in Reaper, so it’s no surprise these two work astonishingly well together. The real surprise is that they win crowds over while portraying dim-witted hillbillies, an out of character experience for both.
Oh yeah, Katrina Bowden (30 Rock/Sex Drive) has a scene wearing nothing but a bra and panties. I’ll just assume every guy jumped up and fired up whatever device they use to stream Netflix.
Remy – Lovely Molly
I know a good deal of reviewers didn’t like Lovely Molly, and honestly, outside of the (barely forgivable) ending, I have no idea what there is not to like, besides the fact that the movie is genuinely disturbing.
Lovely Molly is about a woman who gets married and moves back into her childhood home, but in the process seems to awaken some demons from her past that she may not have worked out. You really have no idea where the movie is going, but the whole time, you TRULY BELIEVE this woman is spiraling into madness, and you are never quite sure if it is self-induced or caused by external forces. Molly has a questionable past with drug usage, and she also suffered some childhood traumas, and these issues present themselves in such a way that the viewer is not quite sure, up to the very end of the film (when it is SOMEWHAT all justified) what is happening to Molly.
The thing that stuck with me about this movie was the staggering performance of Gretchen Lodge, who plays Molly in the film. She goes to places so dark, and yet at no point did I feel like I was watching a performance. I felt like I was watching someone descend into madness, and I felt guilty and powerless for not being able to help her, yet not being able to look away, either.
Another noteworthy thing about the film is the tragic death of actor Johnny Lewis, who played Tim in the film, and Kip in Sons of Anarchy. The rumors surrounding his final moments seem to oddly mirror those events that Molly goes through in the film, with drug use potentially being a catalyst to murder and madness. I talk about it a bit more in-depth at Unreality this week for anyone interested.
It was tragic and somehow makes the subsequent viewings of the film even more unsettling. Not to tie fiction to reality, but I think someone tied those strings together, already. I am just pointing it out.
By the way, you may want to stream The Gate second, so you’re not left with such a sour taste in your mouth. You know, the bitter taste of nihilist-fueled hopelessness?
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