Saturday, December 20, 2008

Stuck - A Review

I promised John from Freddy In Space I would review this movie by Friday.
And now it is Saturday night...And I'll probably hit the post button sometime around Sunday.

I'm trying to give Stac's rant as much top blog time as possible because I think I snorted a french fry out of my nose while reading it. A garlic one. And it hurt. THAT'S how fucking funny it was!
So go read that if you haven't then come back and read this.

Okay...done now?

Moving on.

So Stuck was recommended by Freddy in Space. Well not really recommended, more like "Hey I haven't watched this! Lets all watch this together! "I am prone to the bandwagon syndrome. After all, I did have mall bangs once in my life.
Oh shut up, I'm sure most of you wore parachute pants and OP shirts at one time.
So I threw it up onto the Netflix cue.

Stuck is an interesting little film. The story is a simple one. White trashy Ghetto-licious nurse in an old folks home gets trashed at a club and hits a pathetic down on his luck loser walking across the street. Instead of calling 911, she drives the car home and locks it in the garage with the guy still stuck in her windshield. Hilarity ensues.

Now one thing I have to admit, I did not feel this movie was a horror film. I'm not sure why people are classifying it in the genre either. It comes across as a quirky drama/thriller. Now I'm open to just about all genres of films (though some chick flicks really grate at me) so that wasn't much of a disappointment. But if you were expecting an over the top hardcore gorefest be forewarned, It is NOT.

The movie's pacing was nice. I like how the characters were set up. Nurse Brandi (Mena Suvari) appeared at the beginning to be a compassionate, nice, though rather class-less young woman but as the film went on her character degenerated into one spineless selfish bitch. Likewise, victim Thomas (Stephan Rea) who begins comes across as a pathetic dead beat, stops being a victim and starts to take matters into his own hands...well as best as you can with being stuck half into a car windshield. The acting was good. Stephan Rea was a stand out, never going too over the top with his performance and keeping Thomas grounded as a real guy. Mena Suvari did a good job as well. She handled the transformation from sweet thing to scheming bitch very smoothly making it all feel natural. Of course the scene stealer was Russel Hornsby as Rashid, Brandi's manipulative cheating, E Dealing, douche boyfriend. He kept the levity in the movie despite the heavy subject matter and I really enjoyed watching his character sleaze his way across the screen.

The gore itself was neither clown gore nor was it over the top torture porn. It tended to fall into that category of "real life" gore which I particularly do not like. Yet there were some moments of over the top violence. Someone does get a pen to the eye and there is a cat fight that involved a frying pan to the head that was just slapstick funny. Much to my surprise, for a movie about a guy getting hit by a car, the gore was rather minimal.

The weakest point of this movie was the direction. It just couldn't make up its mind on what it wanted to be. Drama? Horror? Thriller? Dark Comedy? Social Commentary? It wanted to be all these things but never really put a firm foot into any of them for me to even consider putting it into those categories. I don't mind mixing my genres but make a decision and go with gusto! This unfortunately would drag the movie down as it tried to make up its mind on where it wanted to go. Luckily the performances and interesting subject matter kept me watching to the end. I'm glad too because the final showdown between Brandi and Thomas was funny and really intense. It was a great climax. A little lack luster of an ending, but a great climax.

My overall impression? It was entertaining. It was not what I would consider horror and the movie itself felt muddled. But it did have moments of entertainment and the third act is worth wading through the patchy first and second act of the movie. I wouldn't own it on DVD but it was worth the rental price.
If you're looking for a good quirky drama movie, this is a good one to watch. If you rather spend your money on some good quirky horror, rent ReAnimator instead.


Johnny said...

I've been way too busy to get my review up yet, so don't worry about getting yours up late! I'll be posting my thoughts tommorow. Thanks for participating!

BonesawLtd said...

I think that the reason this film gets placed in the "Horror" bucket is because it was directed by Stewart Gordon. Stewy is somewhat of a legend in the genre with such films on his resume as:
-King of the Ants (A little less on the horror side, but it shows Kari Whurer with a giant schlong...scary)
-From Beyond
-A couple of Masters of Horror Episodes

The list goes on, but I think everybody gets the point.

I haven't seen this yet, but I have it. Great Review!