Wake In Fright
Director: Ted Kotcheff
Staring: Donald Pleasence, Gary Bond, Chips Rafferty
Viewed: Streaming on Amazon Prime
Transfer Quality: Good enough
Man this movie is deranged and completely fucked up. I’d seen this poster around forever, but the trailer and story line just never really grabbed me enough to give it a go. Well last night I took a chance and gave it a shot based on not being able to find anything else to watch. I’m glad I finally made the decision to spend the time with this weirdness.
The story is that of a under paid schoolteacher in Australia who has been working in a remote town for the government. When the school year ends the teacher goes on holiday trying to visit the city of Sydney to see his girlfriend. His train stops in a small Australian redneck town, and he has one night in Bundanyabba (the Yabba) and ends up getting ridiculously drunk and gambling all of his life savings away (doesn’t seem like much of a savings really). The teacher has nowhere to stay and no money to catch another train or bus to get out of this drunken violent hell. He ends up waking up on different people’s floors and beds after many nights of debauchery. The teacher starts hanging out with an alcoholic doctor who doesn’t believe in money (played by the infamous Donald Pleasence of Halloween). This might be DP’s best role ever as he steals the show in this one. I actually was wondering if the director got Pleasence completely shitfaced and just let him have at it with the character he was playing.
The pair goes out drunkenly hunting for kangaroos with some red neck miners driving them around shooting in the bush. They chase and kill many a kangaroo. They also drunkenly fist fight and wrestle these beautiful beasts. Some of this film is hard to watch. As (DC) said to me about this film when I told him I was viewing it… “Donald Pleasence is Satan in that movie”. When (MA) asked me what film I would have as a double feature with Wake In Fright I immediately said Last House On The Left.
BLACK FLY (2014)
Written and directed by Jason Bourque
Starring: Matthew MacCaull, Dakota Daulby, and Christie Burke
Streamed on Amazon Prime
This was an awesome little independent film that had me interested from the moment I started watching it. The first scene takes place in a trailer park, and the main character is a teenage boy wearing a DOA shirt. It’s obvious he’s been molested by his uncle who has been confronted and has now beat the kid silly. This kid takes off to live with his older redneck brother, who still lives in the house that they grew up in on a remote island somewhere in Canada. The parents of the brothers are no longer alive due to an accident, and suicide.
At any rate things start off okay with the brothers living together along with the older brothers girlfriend. The older brother soon becomes paranoid, unhinged, filled with jealousy and drunken rage in which much violence occurs.
This thriller is dark and very atmospheric. There is a cool build up with tons of growing tension that work toward the climax of the film. After watching this movie I started to look into other films the director made over the years. This one seems to be his best work, I loved everything about it. The battle at the end is glorious. (NW)
Nate Wilson: NW Devon Cahill: DC Matt Average: MA
SICARO: Day of the Soldado (2018)
Director: Stefano Sollima
Starring: Josh Brolin, Benicio Del Toro
As I’ve stated in a previous review I’m mostly on a 70’s kick lately…but I had to watch this follow up to Sicario from a few years back. I saw the Original in the theatre and then again at home. If you haven’t seen that film do yourself a favor and get to it, its a top film from 2015.
This film I’m reviewing really has nothing to do with the first one other than a couple of the same characters. Both Josh Brolin (of RKL fame) and Benicio Del Toro mark their return in this one. I love the bruteness of both their characters. Throw in any plot with terrorism and I’m fucking sold. This time around the cartels are smuggling terrorist across the border into the United States. It goes beyond that with the US government intentionally kidnapping a cartel leaders daughter, to trick them into starting a war with another cartel. I cherish the violence, and the acting. Additionally the music is dreary & fucking heavy in a very none rock n roll sorta way. It can make you feel uncomfortable and on edge. It works well.
There are some weak links in the film for sure… for one, by the end of the flick you sort of have forgotten that this fantastic story all occurred because of terrorism. More than that the main character is an FBI agent, when he’s actually acting more on the lines of a CIA spook (International shit). Still this is a very solid flick that I’d watch again. (NW)
NW: Nate Wilson DC: Devon Cahill MA: Matt Average