I make these sacrifices so you don’t have to. I put myself through some of the world’s most terrible films so I can spare you the agony. It’s tough but somebody has to do it.
Warning: Grown up words have been typed here, not for the faint of sensibility!
What to watch this week:
Big Bad Wolves.
My regular readers know that I like to do the odd movie review, particularly when it involves horror. My go to movies are usually well cast but not so well known or a bit out there as far as theme is concerned. I’m a sucker for foreign movies, particularly horror, which are often done with more finesse than American versions, no offence to any American Horror Directors out there.
In recent weeks one of my friends has been bugging me to watch Big Bad Wolves which apparently Quentin Tarantino called the best horror movie of the year (2014).
BBW is an Israeli film and starts with a slightly surreal scene of a group of kids playing while the titles roll, by the end of which one of the girls disappears. It continues very ominously with a bunch of cops taking a man to an abandoned warehouse and beating the crap out of him for paedophilia. We are not told how this man has come to be their prime suspect, merely that they are all certain he is the one whodunit! Managing to get little out him, they let him go, and the overeager cop on the case is suspended for managing to get the beating caught on camera and posted to youtube. Deciding he will do everything in his power to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the teacher they were beating, Dror, is his guy, he tails him constantly and finally decides to abduct and scare him into confessing. In all, this movie places a lot of emphasis on extraction of information via violence.
Half way through his intimidation process Mickey (the cop) is unterrupted by Gidi, the dead girl’s dad, who decides to take over the interrogation. In true assasin style he moves them both to an abandoned property he’s bought purely for the benefit of torturing Dror and the two get to work.
He begins by reading Dror the police report of what his victims allegedly experienced and proceeds to adopt all the criminal’s methods in order to extract that elusive confession. Mickey, who has collaborated with Gidi up to that point, starts having second thoughts whether Dror is indeed their man and when he hesitates to further torture him is also handcuffed to the wall by Gidi who is dead set on getting his confession. At no point during the torture does Dror confess and the viewer is left to frequently wonder whether he is in fact guilty.
The movie progresses via a series of comic/tragic developments where even Gidi’s elderly parents get involved. There is also a Palestinian man peppering the film but I couldn’t understand if it was done as social commentary or just a bit of relief from the main story.
I won’t spoil the ending by telling you what happens next; I’ll just say that it’s worth watching even though I think Tarantino’s claim was a bit farfetched. I will mention however that unlike Hollywood films this movie is low on special effects. The blood looks fake, the wounds don’t bloat and in all you can tell it’s amateurish (which does somewhat detract from the suspension of disbelief) but as the movie’s strength lies in the acting, you learn to ignore it.
What not to watch:
The Babadook is an Australian movie which came out last year and though all the reviews made me feel like I should watch it, I wish I hadn’t now.
It starts with a cunty kid who is afraid of monsters and cannot sleep at night making his cunty mother’s life a living hell. I disliked both the main characters straight off the bat. The kid is whiny, annoying and well… childish and the mother is bland, weak, unrelatable and has absolutely no saving grace as a character. Half way through the movie I actually wished the Babadook would get them and spare us all the torment of watching the rest of it.
When the kid starts exhibiting antisocial behaviour in school in the form of hand made weapons in order to protect himself from the monsters he sees, the mother takes him out of school as she feels they don’t understand his anxiety. I have to pause here and ask how a six year old can make projectile weapons (a mini cross bow and some kind of cricket ball hurling thing with straps no less) from what looks like a busted picture frame and some wire and bits of old wood and a can? I mean just how bad is his mother to not notice him cutting and sawing and nailing and possibly even welding bits of metal and wood. I’ve customised furniture in my day, I know how hard that shit is alright?
Moving on, swiftly. As the cunty mom goes on to indulge every single one of her kid’s unreasonable demands, she also reads him stories at night in order to help him go to sleep, and on one fated night the kid chooses “The Babadook” book. Presumably they have been living in the same house since her husband was alive, (he died on the night the kid was born, hence some of her distraction) so we’re not told how this Babadook book found its way into the kid’s hands. Apparently it was on the bookshelf. When the book encroaches more on her life she tears it up and throws it away, after being warned however that the more she denies its existence the stronger its hold on them becomes. So what does she do? She barbecues the book of course! Anyhoo to cut a long story short, the Babadook is a spooky under-the-bed kinda monster which slowly proceeds to make their lives hell and drive the mother closer to her wit’s end. Her increasing madness stems from the fact that the cunty kid’s former behaviour has alienated virtually every single person she knows, so currently has no one to turn to bar the very old next door neighbour. This situation goes on for about two weeks so I’m not sure how she keeps her job or her kid out of the hands of the social services in the interim. In all it was slow to pick up, repetitive and dull despite its attempts to the contrary.
Admittedly I did not see the end coming, which was probably the cleverest thing about it all. Is it worth watching to the end? Probably if you fast forward through the rest.
Other Meh movies:
Contagion-promising premise but totally unemotive.
Redirected– I’ve seen it described as a cross between Hangover and Lock Stock. Only watch if you love Vinnie Jones.
Hugs y’all (and raise your kids right, so when the Babadook comes you have friends to call!)