|Index||5 reviews in total|
This is a film about the reality of the TV shows and the human nature -in nowadays. The acting is excellent, the music and cinematography also. This is a budget film with a very good story and storytelling. If you stay with it long enough to see beneath the surface, this movie can be habit-forming.
You will enjoy it.
Some parts of the plot are based on other famous works like American Psycho and Clockwork Orange. Rex Madison's character is almost equal to Patrick Bateman's. Some events are also the same as in American Psycho (the novel). These scenes are more naturalistic than in the American Psycho movie. They are closer to Bret Easton Ellis' dark world. Rex Madison's home videos are used in the demonstration how the Clockwork Orange 'equipment' works. Little Alex's character shows what has happened to him after Kubrick's story. Yes, he is that Alex from Stanley Kubrick's Clockwork Orange. Once you feel sick by the naturalism, ten seconds later you are laughing like a child. All these presented as a reality TV show offer great entertainment for thriller fans.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This film was OK, but flawed. The basic plot is that it's an episode of a
News Magazine Show called Nexxt looking at the Serial Killer phenomenon,
featuring the person A Clockwork Orange was based on, and culminating in
capture of a Real Life Serial Killer. Since this film's so obscure,
more in-depth synopsis that's, regrettably, SPOILER-LADEN:
Alex isn't really let in on the type of show, and so he's confused as they recreate the events in the book in a cheezy sort of News Magazine Show manner, from his crimes to the Ludovico Technique.
As for the murderer-catching plot, they're reporting live from the restaurant where he's about to be caught. Their proof: He videotaped his recent murder of a couple prostitutes -- which is what's used for the Ludovico Technique in the film. As promised by Frau Plastic Chicken, the host of Nexxt, and Sony Double, Jr., the on-site correspondent, soon the murderer (Rex Madison) is caught by the authorities, and brought to the studio for an exclusive interview as well as a game where Alex and Rex have to repent for their sins, and the person who repents more sins in 60 seconds wins Clemency. Rex wins, and in the excitement, he obtains guns; mayhem ensues and he and Alex escape.
Then we get a teaser for next week's episode, where Frau Plastic Chicken is in Space Gear, as they're going to do the episode from the new lunar colony! Then credits.
It's not really clear whether or not we're supposed to think the whole thing with Rex is staged, if FPC is somehow alive again (after all, they DO mention when Sony's killed, that he'll be OK, despite the fact that he was shot not-quite-point-blank in the forehead) or if it's a pre-recorded thing that was just timed to roll at the end of the episode. Of course, this folds into the fiction of the Film As Episode, because while the bit with Alex and Rex boarding the helicopter is shot as if it's still part of the show, it's also shot the most filmicly (The rest of the film is shot in the TV style).
Anyway -- as I said, it was a Very OK film. It showed a few points, though.
1. Don't make your title cooler than the movie. Because, say what you will, "The Frau Plastic Chicken Show aka Nexxt" is one of the coolest titles ever. So, you're gonna have to work extra-hard to make something that fits it.
2. Hey, Other People Like Chris Morris Too! I know that the whole Fake-News-Magazine thing isn't new, but there seemed to be a lot borrowed from Chris Morris' style, including a few Visual Tricks. Even in the best bits of this movie, I thought "Wouldn't it be cool if there was an episode of Brass Eye shot as a film?". During the worst bits, it was replaced with "Ew, oh, ew!" which can be translated as "CM would have made this so much better." Which sort of leads into Lesson 3:
3. When Doing A Film On Violence It's Better If You Don't Show All The Violence. This is actually the Number One Major Failing Of This Film. Even A Clockwork Orange isn't THAT violent -- or rather, it's very violent, it's just that not a whole lot of it makes it on screen. I'm pretty squeamish, and the only bit in ACO that gave me any problems was the contraption holding Alex's eyes open -- the worst violence takes place inside your head. The problem, though, is that the filmmakers now KNOW that what you're thinking is worse than what they'd put on film -- so they try to out-do it. So, not only is what you're thinking's happening STILL worse than what they're actually showing, what they're actually showing's pretty grotesque as well. Also, pointless. Especially in this film. Examples:
a) The show logo and segment titles were metal outlines of the logo collapsing over and squeezing and cutting flesh until it bled.
b) As mentioned, the serial killer videotaped his murders. While not quite as graphic as they could be (just barely...) they were pretty dang graphic, and were pretty much watched through eyes-not-quite-shut-so-everything-is-blurry-vision, with me cursing and going "ew" whenever my eyes would open.
It doesn't sound like much, but this stuff kept popping up (especially A), so it's actually more than it seems.
4. The Bad Punk Band Music Video Rule. I've seen a bunch of indie-type neo-Punk Videos, and there are a lot of good ones, but the Bad Videos all seem to have one thing in common: They feature the band playing surrounded by t-shirts and posters of better bands. The effect is, presumably, to make you think you're listening to those bands. Or, perhaps make you go, "Hey, remember that time when I listened to Weezer and I felt all good cause I was listening to an awesome band! I should buy these guys' record cause it reminds me of that!" Sadly, it never works. Having Alex in this movie is sort of the same effect. To the director and writer's credit, they pull it off about the best it CAN be pulled off, but they still should have used their own character. While Alex does bring along a lot of weight, it wouldn't be too terribly difficult to write a character that the audience would connect with being an Alex-like -- just swap out the Ludovico Technique for some horrible rehabilitation. Still, when I wasn't reminiscing about Brass Eye, I kept thinking about how much I enjoyed the book and film of ACO, but also how I enjoyed those much more than this film here. Had they not said "HEY! BURGESS NOVEL!!! KUBRICK FILM!!!!" I probably wouldn't have really thought of ACO. At least, not strongly.
All in all, it's probably worth seeing, but if you can't, it's not really worth getting worked up over.
In my opinion Nexxt was meant to be a disdainful smile to the Hungarian television and its audience. However, reducing the number of shocking elements of the film could have resulted in two things. First, it could have reached much more people (in Hungary it was declared to be so scandalous that very few people had the chance to watch it uncut in cinemas). Second, and more importantly I wouldn't have felt it necessary to watch it fast forward at certain parts (I didn't). But altogether it's a very brave, self-destructive (at parts) attempt, and it really succeeds in making us laughing at ourselves. It certainly smashes the Hungarian meant-to-be-megahit Hídember. As for the actors, they couldn't have been chosen any better. Especially Udvaros Dorottya sparkles and spits her great lines in our face. She's so stunning. In a part, where she could've tried to make it very-very big, she manages to find a balance and correctly recognizes that the film is already over-exaggerated, her performance plays a crucial role in making us having nightmares about the film. The rest of the cast (especially Bodó Viktor) is also very remarkable. Gets a 6.
A thought-provoking film adaptation of a play that is itself a
of American Psycho.
What makes it extremely interesting and worth to watch is that it is placing the original story in the framework of today's often cruel TV-shows, those that do not care about the methods, only about the effects.
Parallel with it, the film also suggests the responsibility of society itself, as the receptive agent of media products, a multitude sharing the act of committing media's sins by remaining silent or even becoming cooperative.
The film's imagery is intensive, shocking, sometimes even brutal and horrifying. It is capable to make us laugh loudly on the miserable nature of media reality, while surely no one will leave the theater untouched and without a bang in the head.
For me, the film is comparable to Bad Boy Bubby, in its crude beauty and naturalism, but also in its employing of both extremely comic and extremely tragic elements.
|Plot summary||Ratings||External reviews|
|Plot keywords||Main details||Your user reviews|
|Your vote history|