Wednesday, December 05, 2012

God Bless American Mary

 "American Mary is a dazzlingly audacious sophomore effort from the Vancouver-based twisted twin sisters Jen and Sylvia Soska. With this new picture, the sisters are on (at least for some) shaky moral ground (and/or crack), but happily, they maintain the courage of their convictions and do not tread lightly upon it. This movie is some mighty nasty stuff - replete with elements of slashing satire that hack away and eventually tear open "normally" accepted versions of right and wrong whilst grasping the exposed nerve endings of morality, holding them taught and playing the jangling buggers like violin strings. The picture will provoke, anger, disgust, horrify and scandalize a multitude of audiences - it's one grim, horrific and darkly hilarious fairy tale. On its surface, the picture is a rape revenge fantasy set against the backdrop of body modification, but deep below, it roils with the sort of subversion Canadian filmmakers have become famous for all over the world." - Greg Klymiw, Klymiw's Film Corner (full article
 "American Mary is a psychological thrill-ride that will make you question your own morals as it pushes your tolerances to new limits. At the very least, it will ask you how far you’re willing to let someone go before telling them enough is 
enough. At the same time, there are enough visceral moments with excellent special effects to satisfy gore hounds. There are some moments when you’ll be forced to “suspend” your reality, but if you go with it, you’ll have a great experience with Bloody Mary." - Evil Argento, YELL Magazine (full article)
"When a movie has been kicking around the film festival circuit and winning as many accolades as American Mary has, bloated expectations are to be expected. Does it really live up to the hype or is it now a matter of a movie winning awards simply because it's already won everything else? In this instance, American Mary is a rarity. Not only does it live up to expectation, it surpasses it." - Marina Antunes, Quiet Earth (full article)
"The practical effects in AM are gore-geous. Todd Masters and the aptly named MASTERSFX are truly disgusting. Yet, this isn’t a gore-fest like say, A Serbian Film. The violence is subtle, often just hinted at, or cut away from. When the lea
kage and cuts are shown they are unnerving, yet the time they aren’t shown, when the imagination fills in the gaps are almost worse. Don’t think the Soskas don’t realize this. They know how to get under your skin. How to leave a lasting scar.

The growth between their first film, and this film is incredibly impressive. Not only is the tone much darker, but the camera work has switched from a cinema verite style, to a much more stable style of camera work. It’s nice, especially in this world of found footage-athons, and shaky cam films which block out the sun. Imagine it, skillful framing, and shots designed to hold an image in the frame, and not zoom right the Hell past it before we can even appreciate the composition. Truly surgical precision is used in these shots. The cinematography is inspiring, and all praise goes to Brian Pearson for that.

There are still great one-liners, but the writing has also evolved. We are still treated to some familiar Soska themes and devices. The film stays true to the style they’ve developed, yet shows a whole new shade of black, all the more obsidian. If Dead Hooker was cooked medium, American Mary is positively charred."
- Sean Thompson, Spooky Bloggery (full article)

No comments:

Post a Comment