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May (2002)
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Review Date: August 25, 2002
Director: Lucky McKee
Writer: Lucky McKee
Producers: Scott Sturgeon, Marius Balchunas
Actors:
Angela Bettis as May
Jeremy Sisto as Adam
Anna Faris as Polly
Plot:
A girl who grows up with one lazy eye develops zero social skills and ultimately finds herself with a doll for a best friend, sewing as a hobby and blood as a fetish. But what's this? There's a cute guy in town and he actually likes "weird" girls? A match made in heaven, right? Well, maybe he doesn't like them "that" weird?! Blood and comedy ensues.
Critique:
Now this is some fucked up shit! Take a couple of spoonfuls of HEATHERS, sprinkle a little bit of GHOST WORLD in there, add a dash of directors Dario Argento and David Lynch, plenty of blood, body parts, and stir until you find the ideal mixture of laughs, gross-out moments and just plain creepiness...and serve! Not for the weak of stomach (I haven't seen this many people walk out of a screening in a while), this movie entertained me on several levels, starting with its very dark humor, its very strange characters and its very bizarre premise. With that last statement alone, you should check yourself on or off the "to see" list for this movie, since it is most definitely for the more skewed of the movie fan masses. I personally don't mind strange pictures as long as they "work" and this one managed to find just the right balance between all of the different genres (a very tough thing to do), to thoroughly entertain me. And if you thought that JEEPERS CREEPERS had a memorable final scene...wait until you see this one! I also liked how the film began on a very light and mostly bizarre tone (a little Tim Burton-ish, if I don't say so myself), with a touch of the gothic, and successfully shifted it all into a much creepier zone, and ultimately, into a pretty bloody mess. To the director's credit, he does feature a quick shot of a girl screaming at the top of her lungs in front of a mirror with blood pouring out her eye as his first shot in the movie, which I assume was his way of alerting the audience to "prepare themselves".

And while this is definitely not your typical horror or comedy by a long shot, it does manage to play on both levels, especially if you're open-minded enough to go along for the ride (and yes, it is a ride which doesn't take itself seriously). Who does take themselves seriously, on the other hand, are the actors, all of whom do a great job of straddling that line between the light-hearted and damn serious. Tops on that list is the lead actress, Angela Bettis, looking remarkably like the daughter of famed Italian horror director Dario Argento, Asia, and truly capturing the essence of this chick who is at times, extremely cute, shy and adorable, and other times, extremely creepy, weird and just plain psycho! Kudos to her for really getting into the character and capturing her leisurely paced, but painfully obvious, cracking of the mind. That palpable build-up can also be attributed to the directing, which is handled quite masterfully by first-time helmer Lucky McKee, who utilizes the score, the shot compositions and the sound to reinforce the script's more potent elements. Jeremy Sisto also does an outstanding job as the "guy" in the picture, playing his character as a real person, and justly giving you that sense of outrage/puzzlement as he finds out more and more about this girl. I also loved his own college film entitled "Jack and Jill" (great picnic!). His down-to-earth attitude made the ultimate denouement of the picture that much more effective.

I also appreciated the director's ability to produce genuine tense moments once things got "going", especially considering that the film's first half is rather humorous. The bloodier/gory scenes really played authentic for me, almost like they were happening right in front of me, and in some cases, grossing me out. All that blood didn't hurt much either. By the way, I already mentioned this above but I'll say it again, if you can't stand the sight of a cat getting bloodied up, or even the thought of a human being chopped into pieces, this dark comedic horror movie is definitely not for you. For those of you with a strong stomach, a taste for the crimson rivers and a longing for originality (as well as an extra sexy Anna Faris making out with chicks!), see this movie with the lights down and your favorite psycho-girl/boy curled up by your side...just make sure that the scissors aren't in arms reach. And how about her freaky doll, eh? Brrrrrrrr...
(c) 2017 Berge Garabedian
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