Rondo (2018) Poster

(2018)

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1/10
I wanted to like this film....
mantisshrimp100016 May 2019
I wanted to like this film, I really did. The 50's inspired pulp poster was great, the cinema was packed with a pumped-up audience & the director was there. The movie started with an original, interesting premise but petered out 2/3 of the way through. What started as a cool, weird mystery ended as a shoot 'em up blood bath and no satisfying conclusion. By the time it was over I was dying to get out as fast as possible. Could have been so much better.
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8/10
For those after some Dubstep Greenaway; remarks on Rondo's style.
giles-edwards9 May 2019
Even before its international premiere at Fantasia, "Rondo" was creating mumblings among reviewers who had seen it in the screening room. At the debut, the normally raucous Friday night crowd was uncharacteristically quiet. Then "Rondo" unleashed its singular form of magic. I was very impressed at not only its vitality, violence, and humor, but also its incredible audacity. The director, Drew Barnhardt, started this project with the intention of making, without compromise, the movie he wanted to make. He succeeded spectacularly.

Stylistically, much of Rondo works like Peter Greenaway at his most "ZOO"-ily formalistic. Scenes are designed more like paintings than real life. That's not to say that the action is missing, but more that Barnhardt knows what he wants us to look at, and goes to great lengths to make us do so. The candy-noir of Dennis Hopper's paintings springs up again and again. Then there's the story itself. "Rondo" doesn't so much have narrative twists as narrative convulsions. Ultimately, the finale is the one that we necessarily had to reach, but the path there is like having our arm twisted behind our back (but, paradoxically, pleasantly so). In "Rondo", baroque verbiage and baroque violence come together in a celebration of blood-sodden deadpan.

-GDE
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