2 items from 2017
Ryan Lambie Feb 22, 2017
In the midst of a spectacularly gory horror western, Bone Tomahawk throws in a perfectly-crafted piece of visual storytelling...
Great horror brings with it a hint of mischief. Like a mischievous child dangling a spider in front of a younger sibling, the genre quietly takes delight in teasing, terrorising and generally pushing our buttons.
See related The world of the Peaky Blinders
There's a pleasingly broad streak of mischief running through Bone Tomahawk, S Craig Zahler's earthy horror-western. From its opening shot, throats are cut, appendages are hacked off, bodies rent limb from limb, yet it's all served up with such character and blackly comic relish that it's far less harrowing than it sounds.
In the Old West, a pair of robbers stumble on the stomping ground of a flesh-eating cave dwellers; one escapes their clutches and flees to the nearby town of Bright Hope, unaware that »
Ever since her 2011 short film “Eat,” filmmaker Janicza Bravo has presented a baffling vision of absurd circumstances that defy simple categorization. Throughout subsequent shorts such as “Gregory Go Boom” and “Man Rots From the Head” (both of which star Michael Cera, in the former as a suicidal paraplegic), Bravo’s peculiar style maintains an unnerving quality that feels like cringe-comedy but often takes a sharp turn into odd and alarming glimpses of angry, pathetic characters.
“Lemon,” her feature-length debut, continues that indelible tendency with its deranged portrait of a self-involved man (Brett Gelman, the director’s husband and co-writer) so ruthlessly unpleasant that everything he does contributes to the destruction of his life. Enhanced by a number of notable comedic actors entering uncharted terrain, it’s the kind of movie that makes you laugh and flinch in equal measures, and despite some messier twists, never ceases to move in surprising directions. »
- Eric Kohn
2 items from 2017
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