Mar 3, 2011
Two days ago, I had the pleasure of going to witness the rated R glory of Drive Angry in full 3D. You know, that latest gimmick that Hollywood has already done beat to death. Patrick Lussier came straight out of the box office from the 3D remake of My Bloody Valentine and hopped into the affable Drive Angry with Nicolas Cage attached to star. Now, although the 3D industry is largely based around tacky effects and the obligatory screen-busting props that fly out over yonder, Drive Angry does seem to be the film to see in 3D, what, with breasts bouncing and bullets flying and the general "fuck you" attitude smeared on the specialty screen installed. This brings me to the life force of Drive Angry and you might be pained to admit it; Nicolas Cage. Drive Angry couldn't have possibly been anything without Hollywood's least favorite and greatest character actor. Take Cage's performance in Deadfall for example. Eddie was the reason to see the film, hell, I still haven't seen the film. I just wooed YouTube into letting me watch Nicolas Cage's performances only, sparing myself the semblance of an atrocious plot and script worshiping a cast iron deity in the form of Eddie.
Stopping myself before I go too far out on a tangent, Drive Angry boasts a simple and delectable plot. Milton has escaped from hell and is seeking out his infant granddaughter before a satanic cult can sacrifice her to bring about the apocalypse. Realistically speaking, when I heard this storyline I simply assumed it was the sequel to Ghost Rider. Don't both hold foundations in hell and escaping the clutches of that ever-exaggerated Satan while speeding away in a vehicle of sorts? Another placeholder that Drive Angry touts for an encore is the immature and altogether disgusting sense of humor employed. Immediately following a fist, Amber Heard mocks her bald, butch fiancé by threatening to snitch on his secret love affair with her own dildo. Drive Angry is what I hope the second Ghost Rider film will model after and my wishes might be grounded in a more serene reality as the project is being helmed by Neveldine/Taylor, the fine folks behind the ludicrous and unappreciated Crank: High Voltage. If they can take the dormant brilliance of Cage and unleash it in a current of hell-bent violence and soul-punishing angst then we might just be looking at another comic classic to go right alongside Punisher: War Zone.
Drive Angry does have its crime of error about it; most cases can be blamed on the format of 3D itself. While My Bloody Valentine featured those pivotal scenes of "visceral towards camera = shocking" you've got to remember that film was the first horror film to be shot in 3D so the shtick was of brainstorming brilliance, at least to the heads of Lionsgate. In Drive Angry, it is almost bothersome to see skulls and fragments and debris fly at you. Which again, problem of the format ergo Drive Angry can sustain its luster. Not for long though, which leads me to the biggest inconsistency of Drive Angry; the awful, awful special effects. For a film of this caliber and budget, you'd assume one would polish up the digital animated sequences of vehicular demolition enough to the point of shameless presentation. Again, you'd be wrong. A scene in example is when the incredible William Fictner, as the Accountant, commandeers a hydrogen truck and laughably walks out of the cab onto the hood of an attached police car in a scene that seems all too familiar. Oh, that's right. It looks familiar because that very same effect was used in Bruce Willis' RED. Not only that, the tanker flips over two cars horizontally while Nicolas Cage speeds underneath it which recalls the same stunt used in, yet again, Bruce Willis' Live Free or Die Hard. Only this time the effect looks as if it was utilizing stop-motion animation. To give credit where credit is due; at least they have great choices of action inspiration.
The icing on the cake is without a doubt in my mind the glorious car chase sequences. There certainly is something deeply erotic hidden in the loud rumbling of a '69 Charger but I couldn't place an origin on it. With this sexuality in queue, Drive Angry goes the full mile with a gunfight during a sex scene, ridiculous and very Last Man Standing-ish. Patrick Lussier has come a long way from straight to video horror sequels when you look it at from a certain vantage. When a film like this comes around, you are, for sure, in for a treat of escapism to marvel at. By definition, Drive Angry has all the makings of an enjoyable ride: David Morse, Nicolas Cage, cinematic nihilism, and a broad spectrum of rude, crude, and lewd comments to appease the brat in us all. It is simply unfair that Amber Heard didn't disrobe before us. For some odd reason, since she has revealed to the paparazzi that she is in fact a dyke, no nude scenes have been written in her films since 2008's The Informers. It is either a strange rite of respect or the fallacy of common courtesy. I can't discern the difference, can you? Oh, and did I mention there's a brief scene of irrumatio?
Posted by Soiled Sinema at 7:39 AM
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