Reviews & Counting
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Written by: The Arrow
Director: William Friedkin

Ashley Judd/Agnes
Michael Shannon/Peter
Harry Connick Jr./Jerry
7 10
Some lonely white trash darling (Judd) hooks up with a weird ass freako (Shannon) who brings in government conspiracies, microchips bugs, big brother his watching and a nobody’s safe M.O. with him. Is this shite for real or all in this wacko’s mind? Either way, sure makes for a swell weekend!

You have a centre right? A place inside of you that's just you, that hasn't been spoiled... And I think it's really important to try and keep that space sacred. - Peter

In my tome, WILLIAM FRIEDKIN hasn’t made a stand out genre film since RAMPAGE and THE GUARDIAN (yeah, I dig them f*cking films —sue me), so when BUG crawled along my local DVD store's shelves, I felt a drizzle in my pants. It was Friedkin back to horror! YEEHAW! The man failed in recapturing THE FRENCH CONNECTION with JADE I thought, but maybe he’d echo the genius that was THE EXORCIST with this puppy? Was I right? Almost!

BUG so f*cking had me. It established a flawed yet affable lead in Agnes, bravely played by Ashley Judd, set up quite the peculiar situation and once the oddball madness kicked in, Friedkin ran with it as far as it could. I was hence subjected to a gripping, weird ass, mind numbing and definitely engrossing tale. WOW! Straight up though, it was the characters in BUG that made it all happen for me. The lead white-trash gal (Judd), her ex “jail bird” boyfriend (Connick Jr.) and her new found beau (Shannon) could’ve easily been showcased as one dimensional type characters. But here the script was smarter than that, putting out subtle layers, depth, past demons and nuances to its players. They felt real, very human and I couldn’t help but get attached to them. Yup! The stellar actors in this backhouse locked the deal for me. Talk about balls on, fearless and emotionally resonant performances. I was right there with them man! Following these mooks around without fail, for better and for worse.

And once the “horror” kicked in, I was owned stupid! For a while there, I was totally bamboozled by the twisted happenings, asking myself questions, disgusted by the grisly acts of self mutilations and constantly wondering: where I stood in this sick game of "f*ck you, you're nuts". Then, it happened. As the clock ticked forward, the flick strategically removed two handfuls of tiles from under my feet with the intent of sending me falling aimlessly to my freaking doom. And for a while there it was on the right track. The drama hit hard, the mystery weighted heavily on me and the turns of events took me by surprise like a chick revealing herself to be a "he" in drags after a drunken night of poon hunting! And all that potent jive was wrapped up in a mature, firm and efficient visual style to boot! Yes, Friedkin was on of his motherfucking game!

Sadly, much like a premature ejaculator aiming for the wrong hole, the film blew its load too swiftly and tarnished the whole. Once the third act kicked in, the affair lost points. The transition from semi insane to full blown whack-job as to our leads didn’t feel organic or credible. The picture went from level 1, skipped 2 or 3 levels to then go buck wild! Didn't work.  It’s as if the film was in rush to end already and it didn’t give a flying f*ck nut if it made any sense or not. Good news is, even though the jump was awkward, I was still fairly consumed in what transpired. I mean how I could I not be? Tin foiled walls, the countless bug lamps, the earthquakes, Ashley Judd PMSing like it was a contest… not perfect execution wise, but still worth gawking at.

So when the end credit rolled, I was bugged out on bug. Its first hour was rock solid, but alas, its last block jumped the gun. But that didn’t deny the astonishing performances at play, the tight pace and the daring nature of the movie. It was almost a masterpiece! But hey I’ll take a pretty good flick over a piece of shit any day. BUG OUT ON THIS!
We get cuts, bruises; gun shot wounds and the tour the force, a dude pulling his teeth out with a pair of pliers… ouch…I winced on the latter.
Ashley Judd (Agnes) gave the performance of her career in my opinion. Brave, bold, honest and touching, the dame had me, she was damaged goods but damaged goods that I could care about. I had never heard of Michael Shannon (Peter) before but will keep tabs on the lad now. Subtle, introverted yet totally captivating; the man sold me! I don’t know when Harry Connick Jr. (Jerry) became a staple a-hole with muscles in films (Copycat?) But hey, I bought it!
T & A
Ashley Judd pretty much showed it all (thank you Miss Judd) while the ladies got some buns and ding dong fun from Michael Shannon.
Friedkin was at his strongest here, with a penchant towards icky atmosphere, razor shots, tension laced bits and an excellent grasp on his actors.
We get a low key and unsettling score.
BUG was so close to being gold. Captivating initial premise, brilliant characterization, amazing actors and visceral moments that squished my balls into cachou dust. Unfortunately, the transition to the last block was rushed and reached such a totally out there level so fast that it didn’t feel “real’ when taking into account the first hour. I needed an extra 20 minutes to get me there man! Somebody was in a hurry! With that stabbed into your shin, BUG is definitely worth a gander and is a formidable return to horror form for Mr. Friedkin. Now, give me The Guardian Part 2 yo! I'M THERE!
The film was based off a stage play.

Michael Shannon played Peter both on stage and in the film.

Tracy Letts who wrote the play also wrote the screenplay.