Saturday, March 20, 2010

almost had it

I just saw Repo Men. It is a film set in the near future when artificial organs can be bought on credit, but if you fall behind on your payments, a repo man comes and takes the organ back. The hero is a repo man who develops moral qualms about his occupation.

The two main characters and the bad-guy/boss are terrific characters. Those three characters are men; the two top female roles are played by actresses who are reasonably good, but not in the same league as the men, leading to a lopsided film where the men carry the film.

The premise of the film is interesting, the plot is pretty good, and the action moves along well with some interesting psychodrama thrown in. On the negative side, there is too much gore and despite the good acting, the nonchalant attitude that the repo men take towards killing is not quite believable. As a whole the movie is pretty good --at least up until the last twenty minutes. In the last twenty minutes, there is an extremely violent, bloody knife fight played for laughs, then a bloody mutilation scene that the director tried to make erotic, and then an ending that made you sorry that you had watched the movie.

It's like a relatively talented director made the first hour and a half of the film and then got bored and turned it over to his high school kid to finish.

A bit more on the mutilation/sex scene. This wasn't a sexual mutilation scene like you might have in a move about a sexual serial killer. It was a mutilation scene that the director really tried to make sexy. It was extraordinarily creepy and if it had occurred earlier in the film I would have walked out. I only stayed because I knew the movie was almost over and I kept thinking the scene was almost over. But no. It went on and on. It was one of the most unpleasant experiences that I've ever had in a movie.

I always wonder when I see some creepy sexual scene in a movie if the director is into that. Why else would a director think anyone wants to see a bloody mutilation scene mixed up with sex? I had the same thought during Stargate, an otherwise terrific movie with a creepy pedophile theme --especially the teenage boys dressed up like slutty teenage girls.

I have a high tolerance for gore. I don't particularly like it, but it doesn't usually turn me off on an otherwise good movie. Still, unless you are into the gore/humor and the gore/sex thing, I recommend that you skip this one. The first hour and half isn't worth having to sit through the last twenty minutes.