A dude (Luke Evans) and his squeeze (Laura Ramsey) on the road get messed with by a gang of petty thieves. Thing is, they picked up the WRONG dude to f*ck with, like THE REALLY WRONG DUDE! Let the red paint fly!
When I recently saw the trailer
for NO ONE LIVES
(Coming out limited theatrically on May 10, 2013), I immediately e-mailed the Studio behind it and asked for a screening of it. The trailer made it seem like it was right up my alley. A group of would-be badasses piss off an even bigger badass who goes on to whack them all in grisly ways. SOLD! So they hooked me up with the flick and yes, I had a freaking blast with it for the right and the wrong reasons. Here it goes!
NO ONE LIVES was directed by Ryuhei Kitamura, in case you don’t know who the cat is, he helmed zany efforts like VERSUS
and the Clive Barker inspired MIDNIGHT MEAT TRAIN
. And staying true to himself, the lad delivered another high octane gore-fest here! Yup, I was giggling like a school girl sniffing Liquid Paper while clocking this one’s mayhem splat the screen. The murders were mucho out there, creative and extremely graphic and the killer’s varied weapons (all about that crossbow) and booby traps hit the spot and then some! All good in my book! The cherry on top though was Luke Evans as the lead anti-hero solely known as “Driver”. Looking cool as ice (loved the hero shots they used to convey how bitchin' he was), Evans nailed his role of a soft spoken, stoic and pragmatic psychopath that gave Jigsaw a run for his traps! It was obvious he had a blast doing it and I dug watching him go at it! Evans was well supported too! Cutie Adelaide Clemens (who I loved in Silent Hill Revelation) turned in a layered and affable show, America Olivo made for an ideal she-bitch, Derek Magyar nailed his tough guy role and even Arrow Fav Laura Ramsey (The Ruins) showed up to class the joint up! Now that I think of it, the cast was pretty solid all around, but the ass-clown dialogue they had to spew often made them look bad, but more on that later.
Story wise, the set up was freaking tight and I was hoping for great things to come. I didn’t fully get them because the flick was too busy trying to find its tone throughout instead. Was it a grounded story set in reality? Or was it an over the top gore comic book? It wasn’t sure and struggled with its own identity non-stop. With that, it gunned out at a vicious pace, slapped every exploitation topping you can think of into the mix (bloodshed, the longest shower scene you’ve ever seen and even a cat fight, meow), it sported a couple of howler one-liners (Victim: Why are you doing this to me? Killer: To keep fit), some back-handing plot turns and a visual style that was kinetic to say the least. Kitamura is not the most subtle of directors out there and here once again he took the bull by the horns, slammed its face into the sand and went buck nuts with his on the move camera! Eye candy madness! So yeah, it was hard for me to hate the thing. It is a tad of a bummer that this one stumbled so much though....
Ya see, this could’ve been AWESOME instead of uneven and vacuous entertainment. Like I said before, the tone was all over the place. Moreover, the dialogue was often cringe inducing, to the point that I was embarrassed for the actors. Even DeNiro couldn’t have made some of the lines here work! Then we had the occasional sloppy editing (end fight scene) and the middle section of the flick which left a bit to be desired. The latter lost the momentum of the first block and although still engaging, it was a bit too low jive. I hate it when a flick blows its load too early, loses steam and gets it back for the finale. It is a common movie ailment. Ask any screenwriter: what’s the hardest section to write? The middle section. So NO ONE LIVES suffered from that. Am I going to mention the random plot holes? I just did but to be honest, I didn’t care. Intentional or not, this was a schlocky and gruesome exploitation flick that delivered the red wet goods, I was not expecting Shakespeare over here!
So on the whole; I was amused by NO ONE LIVES. Was it a great flick on paper? Nope! But it was daring, violent and insane enough to make it worth my while. If you like bold and outlandish B Movies with buckets of blood to throw around, you may dig this one!
Yowzer! It got nutty here! Handcuffs through the mouth, a sly gag with a cadaver (I won't tell), a dude put through a shredder, a nasty slit throat, a blown up head, a mangled face, blood splats and more! The kills rocked!
Lindsey Shaw didn't give it up (bummer) but America Olivo was there to save the day with a swell tit and ass shot. Gracias guapa!
I have a tendency to like what many consider to be “bad movies”. I often let go of lots of crap cause I’m having fun, which is the numero uno reason at this point that I like to watch movies, to have fun! I have enough real life horror in my everyday life to deal with. I dig escapism, sue me! And NO ONE LIVES gave me just that! Gory as hell, fast paced, visually inventive, mean spirited with sick one-liners, groovy weapons/traps, a cool premise and an even cooler anti hero, the flick cranked my dial to “yeehaw”!! Sure it won’t win any screenwriting awards, the dialogue was putrid in places, some of the editing was off and the tone all over the place, but hey, again, I ENJOYED myself! All that matters to me! I wouldn't buy it but am happy that I saw it, a rental for sure!