Week 2 Selection: Villains (2019) directed by Dan Berk and Robert Olsen
Before last week, I’d neither heard of nor seen this one, but I’m glad to say that has now been corrected. Villains is a comedy/horror/thriller, and it does a fantastic job of mashing them all into one movie. Bill Skarsgård (Pennywise from It) is just about the only well-known actor from the movie, but Jeffery Donavan is recognizable – if you’ve ever seen the show Burn Notice he plays Michael Weston.
The basic plot goes something like this: Mickey (Bill Skarsgård) and Jules (Maika Monroe, who is super hot) are a couple trying to make their way to Florida to live the good life, and they’re getting there by robbing gas stations. After forgetting to fuel up their car before hitting one gas station, they end up stranded in the middle of nowhere. As you can imagine, that’s where things start to go wrong for our main characters. They break into a house, and while they’re looking for a way to get gas into their car, they discover a girl chained up in the basement. Right when they’re about to get the fuck out, the owners of the house come home. The rest of the movie is Mickey and Jules trying to escape from the psychotic owners.
Villains very well could have sucked. The premise isn’t really anything special, and some of the acting wasn’t all that great at times. The dialogue was fantastic, though, and it felt very Martin McDonagh-ish (he directed Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) the directing was pretty fucking awesome. From the very jump, I got major Tarantino vibes. The way the opening credits rolled was extremely reminiscent of Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, and the way violence was used in the movie was clearly influenced by Tarantino in a huge way. On top of that, I also got major Wes Anderson (Grand Budapest Hotel, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Royal Tenenbaums) in the way the movie was shot.
The best way I can describe this movie is “fun.” It was a really fucking fun watch. It’s got jump scares and suspense, but it will also make you laugh out loud several times. It’s an hour-thirty of awesome entertainment, and if you have any faith in me as a movie-critic who usually makes jokes about cocks and balls and whatnot, you’ll go watch it. It’s on Hulu. Don’t be a pussy.