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Saturday, October 22, 2011

MOVIE REVIEW: RED STATE

RED STATE



Kevin Smith steps his foot into horror territory with this politically tinged fright flick starring Michael Parks (From Dusk Till Dawn, Grindhouse) as a controversial Fred Phelps-ish reverend who brings his own brand of zealotry to a wayward group of teens. Smith directs from his own long-in-development script. ~ Jeremy Wheeler, Rovi

Director: Kevin Smith

Cast: Michael Parks, Melissa Leo, John Goodman, Kyle Gallner, Michael Angarano

Release Date: Jan 23, 2011

Rated R for disturbing content, some sexual content, strong violence, pervasive language and brief nudity

Runtime: 1 hr. 37 min.

Genres: Horror, Suspense/Thriller

Review:

You have to give Kevin Smith credit for stepping outside of the box and trying something different. Red State is a messy message movie that has Smith painting with really broad strokes, creating something that feels rushed and terribly underdeveloped. Watching Red State, you can see where Smith’s mind is but he never achieves a fully realized vision. Instead Red State is a choppy film that has strange tonal changes throughout, with some weird comedic asides. Wonderful character actor, Michael Parks, is placed front and center and Smith gives him free reign with the character which succeeds to varying degrees. Parks is impressive and mystifying in his opening appearance, a nearly 15 minute monologue/ sermon but as the film wears on he should have been reigned in a tad to avoid the caricature the ends the film. Smith has the scaffolding of a film dealing with religious zealots like Fred Phelps, Jim Jones or David Koresh but it turns into something closer to satire. John Goodman and his group of ATF agents are a prime example of this, playing more as types than actual characters. Melissa Leo and Stephen Root show up and barely register. The finale is an almost silly tangent into the bizarre that leaves you scratching your head wondering what Smith intention in this splatterfest was.

C-

6 comments:

  1. Good review! Hmm, was hoping this was good. Will still watch it but not for awhile.

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  2. Thanks man! I was hoping for a bit more, just feels very messy, like he couldn't figure what he wanted to do.

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  3. wow, i have no heard good things about this at all. i am still oddly curious about it

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  4. It's an interesting film to see, just to see a filmmaker like Smith really try something different.

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  5. I haven't been watching anything lately. I usually do like Kevin Smith films. There was one he did that I was actually surprised he made. I can't remember it. Good review.

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  6. Thank ya Diana, I've never been the biggest Smith fan but I do like some of his movies, Dogma is probably my favorite.

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