Features & News

Next on Netflix #2

If Orange Wednesdays have lost their poise, but you’re still looking for films of horror, crime and comedic noise, then worry not, as this week, Wahab will woo you into enjoying a quiet night in with Impact‘s next best recommendations on Netflix.

ABCs of Death

ABCs of Death

ABCs of Death is a film you won’t soon forget. Its frank nature, simplistic premise and straightforward approach is something you rarely see in cinema. If you think this is a compliment, well, think again.

ABCs of Death is something I found by pure chance. I had accidentally clicked on the trailer when it popped up on my phone’s IMDb app. This trailer told me nothing, and the film itself was so narrowly distributed that I never saw it in cinemas. When it then appeared on my Netflix homepage, like a foreign uncle appearing at my door, I felt almost obliged to welcome it into my cinematic sphere.

ABCs of Death is an alphabetised anthology of 26 short films, with each letter acting as the start of the word for the method of onscreen death. The film does not ease you in slowly, but rather aims to discombobulate you from the get-go. The opening short is a clear signifier of the films to come: full of gore and sexualised violence.

This film is not for all. Its production values are perhaps that of the Syfy channel, with effects to boot, the deaths are not tremendously well-thought-out and the dialogue is wooden. However, the sheer brutality each director utilises and employs in their individual short is something to be admired. It’s fun, it’s playful and most of all, it’s entertaining. ABCs of Death is a film that will no doubt set you in fits of laughter and gasps of horror when you watch it.

Chopper Eric Bana

Chopper

There is an Australian film revolution, and nobody knows about it.

Over the past ten years, some of the best films have been made by Australian directors. David Michôd’s Animal Kingdom and of course Andrew Dominik’s Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford  and Killing Them Softy are at the forefront of this revolution. These directors create visceral, original and dynamic pieces of cinema that put much of the so-called “creatives” in American film to shame. They have brought over their style and storytelling methods to create a new strand of filmmaking.

This revolution began with Chopper, the 2000 independent micro-budget film that ushered star Eric Bana to the foreground of the world stage, and more importantly, brought Andrew Dominik to wider attention. Chopper tells the pseudo-biography of Mark Brandon “Chopper” Reed, a notorious criminal of the Australian underworld.

The film, unlike any on this list, is performed with an actor at the top of his game. The direction is clever, clean and always interesting. The characters are all rancid beings, but somehow you enjoy the snide company of Reed himself and his misfit gang of heroin addicts and friends.

Chopper is something new, and if you’re yet to see it, well, it’s something different if you’re seeking an alternative Netflix experience.

Movie 43

Movie 43

I often start a conversation by simply saying: “Have you seen Movie 43?” There are two distinct responses I’ve received: (a) “Never mention that film, I saw it and it broke me” and (b) “No, what is it about?” Let’s pretend you, the reader, fall into the latter category and haven’t already gauged your eyes out after watching the movie.

It’s true to say that Movie 43 is something of a spectacle. The main plot, which is so ham-handedly shoved in our face between each short piece that you can’t forget it, is about a group of teenagers who are searching for the illusive Movie 43: the most banned film in the world. The films that the teenagers watch along their excavation of the internet make up the anthology of short films.

The shorts star major actors who were surely blackmailed into appearing. If there is anything encouraging to say about this film, it’s that the casting director is the best around, with Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman and Emma Stone among the star-studded ensemble.

The films are crude, horribly made, and just shameful. However, it’s not true to say that pleasure cannot be taken from this film. The sheer cringe factor is the driving force behind Movie 43. While I’m not saying this is some Gaspar Noé (if you don’t know who that is, well, that is something you should Google after this claptrap of wince) masterpiece, there is humour in the bad taste that is exhibited by the cast of Oscar winning thespians.

I assure you, while Movie 43 may not sound like a clear-cut movie night in, you will thank me for making you watch it. After your breakdown of course.

Wahab Iqbal

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