Friday, January 6, 2017

RAMPAGE (2009)

Written & Directed By: Uwe Boll 
Cinematography By: Mathias Neumann 
Editor: Thomas Sabinsky 

Cast: Brendan Fletcher, Shaun Sipos, Michael Pare, Matt Frewer, Lynda Boyd, Katherine Isabelle, Michaela Mann 

 A man with a thirst for revenge builds a full body armor from Kevlar and goes on a killing spree.

Yes another Uwe Boll film. Even though it is only my second one. It's a lot better then the first one POSTAL. Yes I know his reputation as a filmmaker. Which Is why I usually avoid his films. Though this is a film really only he could make or really get away with (Notably with barely any fanfare) maybe as he is used to being dissed and ridiculed in the film community. He would of course be attracted to material that showcases a certain shock value with plenty of senseless violence. Here the film is all about a spree killer.

He doesn't give the character an exact reason for his rampage. Leaving it open with continuous political problems that fit a stereotype of middle class disenfranchised Caucasian Americans. Continuously fed-up of being disrespected and not having the furor and world not promised to them and it not being what they expected or supposedly guaranteed. Not praised for the minimal amount of effort or work put forth.

It seems more a natural progression for Uwe Boll as he has gone from making overly styled violent horror and fantasy video game adaptations. To more reality based real life horror films about the dark aspects of humanity , still styled. but at least with this film he has seemed to have gotten better as usually most do with practice and who listen to their critics to a degree or at least take into account suggestions by this who they truly trust around them. Then again maybe he got lucky with a good screenwriter and cast.

Even if he still doesn't know how to direct a dramatic scene as they seem to bore him. Though he does like tension and action. He at least knows how to try to present a dramatic scene.

There was no script, just a 10 page treatment. The movie was entirely improvised.

The film reminds one of the early Stephen King novels RAGE written under the name Richard Bachman which is now hard to find as it has been discontinued. After being found in the possession of many school shooters over the years/ suggesting they found it influential as they can identify with the main character in that tale. That is also the danger of this film. Though actually decently made and acted.

The film seems to reveal more in the action aspects.

The film proposes the character having continuous problems playing like an anthem repetitiously in his head added by his own thoughts that he gives voice to In the first half of the film we know what is eventually coming. So while we look for reason we cringe as the massacre is set up. Watching the details form.

Luckily the film only shows a home off and doesn't ask is to sympathize with him. Even though he Might scarily for the audience be mildly identifiable.

Doesn't act repetitious though for some might get more sickening as more victims pile up. As this can't even be seen as a revenge tale. Bit more random violence and victims. While the audience is in the middle and in the passenger seat of an unhinged driver.

Distasteful and seem to aim to be that way. Especially when he hits the bingo parlor. Which seems like it will just be another cruel massacre. Then turns more into s scarily yet comedic scene of tension. As at first no one seems to notice him enter. Where the scene seems more sarcastic and a pause in the action to become more dialogue driven as in some scenes after he eventually seems to stop to either rest or torture his soon to be victims or must execute because of his own mistakes. It ends up being mostly random who he kills.

The film leaves you to wonder if this massacre was a distraction to more or less get revenge and solve his problems.

Though the main character plays the role more like he is playing a calculated video game. not taking into account all the lives, misery human casualties. he causes all for selfish goal of making himself feel better and justified.

The players in the bingo hall scene are not actors and their reactions are real when Brendan Fletcher takes and calls out a number.

What I think is unfortunate is the end makes it out to be more of a fantasy as it allows the hero to get away with it. Leaving him to be admired to a degree by the like minded. Like it was all done to get everything he wanted a psychopathic anti-hero. Who will take out anyone to see himself successful.

It's scary and it seems unresponsible to a degree. Though will admit it feels less racist than FALLING DOWN. As this film seems to present his frustration more at society at large.

Where as falling down seemed based on a certain class system and the crumbling of the average white male. Seeing or at least the film presenting mostly minorities as the reason for his frustration.

As a film this works, but responsibility wise. It might be seen as deplorable, irresponsible and dangerous. As it seems a new generations frustrated white male revenge vigilante film.

Though the film expects you to be so appalled by the actions that you don't necessarily notice the set-up as to what sets him off could be various things. Though it seems in the end more a means to an end. That allows an escape and an outlet.

Macaulay Culkin was offered the role of Billy, but turned it down.


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