Boxer Santaros: My character... he realizes that the apocalyptic crime rate is because of global deceleration. The rotation of the earth is slowing down at a rate of point zero, zero, zero, zero, zero, zero, zero six miles per hour each day disrupting the chemical equilibrium in the human brain causing very irrational criminal behavior.
Director Richard Kelly follows up his insanely popular among cult audiences debut feature Donnie Darko, to bring audiences another ambitious project that is sure to find a cult audience as well.
Initially panned hard at the Cannes Film Festival, and later among the majority of critics after it finally got a theatrical release, the movie is a large mess of characters and plot, some of which develops, the rest just drifts away. I walked away from this movie understanding what had happened in terms of the development of its story, but not really interested in what it meant or what the underlying themes were.
Its still watchable however, not really terrible in any way, just too jumbled.
The story surrounds a three day period set in Los Angeles in an alternate futuristic reality in the year 2008. A kidnapped Actor with political ties, Boxer Santoros played by Dwayne Johnson, finds himself with amnesia, currently hooking up with a porn star/reality TV host Krysta Now, Sarah Michelle Geller.
Krysta Now: Join us for an in-depth discussion of the penetrating issues facing society today. Issues like abortion, terrorism, crime, poverty, social reform, quantum teleportation, teen horniness and war.
They are involved with a extremist group that are using an ex cop and his twin brother, both Sean William Scott, to help sabotage the work of a political candidate.
The world all of these characters live in is currently going through a number of energy and fuel crisis along with facing WWIII issues, and plenty of other issues that are set up.
There is a lot going on, all of which is narrated by a character played by Justin Timberlake. The cast is one of the strangest assembled since Mars Attacks, featuring a number of random actors as well as former and current SNL stars.
Announcer on PA: Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the way the world ends. Not with a whimper, but with a bang. But there is hope. In the end we can be reassured by one undeniable truth. Nobody rocks the cock like Krysta Now. And I mean nobody.
The movie plays out like a dark comedy/sci-fi/satire using quotations from the Book of Revelations, and making references to a number of other weird movies including Brazil, 12 Monkeys, Dr. Strangelove, and the film noir Kiss Me Deadly of all movies. Basically this movie is very weird.
Of the actors, some of them seem to get what they're doing, others just seem out of place. The Rock, who I usually enjoy, doesn't have his natural charisma to help him here. Gellar actually fares pretty well given her part. Scott seems to be the most familiar with what he needs to be doing, making him the most effective.
As far as the supporting cast goes, older folks like John Laroquette and Nora Dunn seem to get it as well, but others like Wallace Shawn, Cheri Oteri, and especially John Lovitz are just wrong here.
In terms of Kelly's style, its a pretty decent film. There is the same familiar cleverness present in Donnie Darko, providing for a bleak but watchable tone, although it moves very slowly at times, which is especially apparent for a 2 hr and 20 m movie. The soundtrack is pretty good, scored by Moby.
Overall, I was not disappointed with this movie because I wasn't expecting much. It certainly wasn't frustratingly bad, its just messy.
On repeated viewings, I find my same opinions hold up, but for some reason, I had a desire to come back to this movie. It has a certain level of ambition that is hard to explain. The film is watchable in a very strange way that makes me enjoy the film, despite still not gathering much of a personal idea of what the film wants to say. Some elements become clear, but its still damn weird. However, I find it indescribably enjoyable.
Boxer Santaros: I'm a pimp... and pimps don't commit suicide.