Cecil B. Demented - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Cecil B. Demented Reviews

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January 25, 2016
Cecil B Demented is almost the very same elements it intends to criticize, aside from a few catchy scenes, it does not have much to offer!
½ September 8, 2015
Didn't like it the first time I saw it, decided to watch it again, with Dan this time. Might have disliked it even more this time around. Dan didn't even want to finish it.
Super Reviewer
½ April 20, 2015
At first, it seems like John Waters wants to make an audacious hate letter to mainstream cinema with some nice moments of brilliance, but then you realize his "revolutionaries" are a bunch of freaking tards and the film gets too over-the-top and all over the place to have a point.
February 3, 2015
You either enjoy John Waters or you're disgusted by him.
½ December 11, 2014
Probably a bit pretentiously in love with its own quirkiness, but... then again, that's strangely appropriate.
November 21, 2014
Demented Forever!! :)
My fave Waters film
November 12, 2014
***Due to the recent RT changes that have basically ruined my past reviews, I am mostly only giving a rating rather than a full review.***
November 3, 2014
Cecil B.Demented gets five stars. For all the reasons. It happens.
½ April 22, 2014
Seeing as it was a John Waters film, I really could not be sure of what to expect from Cecil B. Demented, but I decided to give it a go.

Cecil B. Demented has a really ambitious and ridiculous premise, a story about underground filmmakers creating a new type of cinema through violent means. As a huge fan of cinema, I found myself really interested in such a concept because it tackled filmmaking and the Hollywood style of filmmaking from an intense satirical angle.
John Waters has the ambitions to ensure that Cecil B. Demented ends up being a sharp edged Hollywood satire, but its success is rather inconsistent. One of its more positive aspects is the fact that Cecil B. Demented makes a commentary about how films nowadays neglect the violence and nudity that used to make films awesome during the grindhouse era. So like the majority of his better films, it is definitely a cult classic. And he manages to instil certain energy in the film that is fuelled by the sex and violence that it makes a commentary on the film industry of its time in 2000 which is still valid today in 2014. Cecil B. Demented makes a valid commentary on the nature of the Hollywood film industry and how it is dominated by mainstream heart tuggers while the exploitation genre lies dead.
The bad part of the film is the fact that Cecil B. Demented feels like a series of vignettes more than a consistent story. I mean the themes and tones of the story is constantly shifting and there isn't much of a consistent path to tie up the loose ends of the story consistency. I guess what I'm saying is that in parts Cecil B. Demented is energetic, entertaining and even hilarious, but as a whole it is rather rudimentary due to the constant tonal shifts. At least it was paced well enough with all its fast energy and only ran for 84 minutes, but it still doesn't justify all the inconsistencies in the direction and the script. John Waters gives an energetic and stylish direction to Cecil B. Demented which ensures that its colour and atmosphere have a fair amount of appeal, but in terms of storytelling it seems as if he reached too far and simply couldn't grasp what was happening, instead resorting to pounding viewers over the head with the underlying message in the film and going at a fairly repetitive rate until the end. Its themes are good, but Cecil B. Demented raises many themes without exploring enough of them sufficiently.
Cecil B. Demented is certainly not a misfire on behalf of John Waters and it aggressively captures the style of underground filmmaking that it chronicles which easily cements its status as a cult classic and leaves an impression on viewers, but they aren't likely to walk away from the film having learnt anything instead of just being reminded of a time when John Walters' kind of filmmaking shone brightly.
Unfortunately, Cecil B. Demented faces the ultimate flaw of casting Melanie Griffith in the lead role who plays a character that transitions from one way of life to another when her first way of life wasn't convincing enough for her to have any transition whatsoever. The main problem with Melanie Griffith's lead performance in Cecil B. Demented is the fact that she doesn't articulate her voice properly. Although she manages to dress up and look convincingly like the respectable Hollywood actress she plays named Honey Whitlock, her voice makes her sound like nothing more than a teenage girl who never escaped an MTV career. The fact that Melanie Griffith cannot do anything with her voice but sound like a whiny stereotypical annoying American teenage girl pays no favours to Cecil B. Demented and makes the fact that she was cast in the lead role a serious mistake. It is no surprise that she got nominated for the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress because her lead performance alone deals some damage to Cecil B. Demented. It is actually quite ironic that she got put into the role of an actress considered good enough to get kidnapped for the sake of playing the lead in an underground film because I can't imagine anyone dumb enough to kidnap her for ransom alone if they have to put up with her whiny pitch of voice tone for so long. If John Walters was going for some strange ironic angle when he cast her he made an interesting choice, and considering that she is annoying it is entertaining to see her dominated by aggressive teenagers who shout at her and burn her scalp with hair dye, so there is some benefit of casting her in the lead. But as a whole, she simply is not an appealing lead for Cecil B. Demented and makes the entire experience a lot less than it had the potential to be, and it never really feels like she has the same energy that the surrounding cast members do.
It feels like the titular character of Cecil B. Demented is based on John Water's own ambitions as a filmmaker and the crazy side of him he tends to explore in a lot of his films, almost a second identity of his. And the performance of Stephen Dorff manages to nail the role. Going over the top into full maximum overdrive, Stephen Dorff faces the role of Cecil B. Demented and steals the screen with it because of his intense dedication to the ferocious endeavour of his craft in filmmaking. The over the top energy is perfect for the character Cecil B. Demented and makes the entire experience fairly powerful whenever he is on screen, so it makes the film rather memorable.
Maggie Gyllenhaal gives a notable performance as well. Early on in her career before she hit the level of success she rides today as an Academy Award nominated actress, Maggie Gyllenhaal is notable for giving an aggressive and energetic performance in Cecil B. Demeented which captures a kind of youthful charisma you don't see her performing with much anymore. It is always interesting to look back at a great actor from early on, and so looking back at Maggie Gyllenhaal in a supporting performance from a 14 year old cult classic proves to be one of those cases.

So as a whole, Cecil B. Demented is hit and miss. It lacks any real consistency, doesn't explore its themes as much as it should and features a terrible lead performance from Melanie Griffith, but the rest of the cast does the job, and John Waters direction manages to keep things stylish and energetic enough to remind audiences of a time where low-budget violent films flourished and even entertain in the process some of the time.
½ February 17, 2014
One of John Waters' best efforts, attacking pop culture, mainstream cinema, and Hollywood's fixation with making thunder-headed blockbusters. Everyone gets a pop.
It can be said that while John Waters is now considered very much a 'mainstream' filmmaker, he is somewhat being contradictory - but he is still working outside the Hollywood system and embracing trash cinema.
While some of the gags maybe hit-and-miss, Waters still musters and imbues a wonderfully sick energy throughout. He doesn't do subtle satire; he bluntly targets all the bases.
½ February 12, 2014
One of John Waters' best efforts, attacking pop culture, mainstream cinema, and Hollywood's fixation with making thunder-headed blockbusters. Everyone gets a pop.
It can be said that while John Waters is now considered very much a 'mainstream' filmmaker, he is somewhat being contradictory; he is still working outside the Hollywood system and embracing trash cinema.
While some of the gags maybe hit-and-miss, Waters still musters and imbues a wonderfully sick energy throughout. He doesn't do subtle satire; he bluntly targets all the bases.
January 25, 2014
Not as bad as everyone says, and the narrative doesn't do the usual Waters thing of going into space and leaving the audience behind, confused. No one is great in it, ,but no one is bad and there are some nice satirical touches here and there. Worth watching.
January 8, 2014
Very original and fresh. Was john waters to the tee!
December 4, 2013
One of those movies you watch as it catches your eye as you change channels. Bad decision. This was a dumb movie with little to like about it. A bad premise with bad execution. Way too much "shoot-em-up" in a movie that was about the rebellious attitude of independent film. Maybe a spoof within a spoof but I didn't like it.
August 18, 2013
Lame. I don't think I even realised it was a John Waters film, which is actually amazing.
August 12, 2013
BAD MOVIE 101: Strangely directed, clumsily written, and badly acted.
July 14, 2013
Otro divague de Waters.
½ June 26, 2013
A wildly satirical look at mainstream and underground cinema--A treat for movie buffs!!
April 28, 2013
This is one tisted crazy movie
March 17, 2013
After reading the blurb this movie sounded like my sort of thing. I really identify with the whole gang of mentally ill movie nuts and it's something i fantasize over often. This is so over the top and melodramatic in that classic John Waters way. I've seen it several times now and i still enjoy it.
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