Random Acts of Violence (2019) Shudder Movie Review

Director: Jay Baruchel

Writer: Jay Baruchel, Jesse Chabot (Screenplay) Justin Gray, Jimmy Palmiotti (Comic)

Starring: Jesse Williams, Jordana Brewster, Jay Baruchel, Simon Northwood, Niamh Wilson

Plot: A pair of comic book writers begin to notice scary similarities between the character they created and horrific real-life events.

Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Not So Random

Story: Random Acts of Violence starts as comic artist Todd (Williams) agrees to go on a road trip with his girlfriend Kathy (Brewster) who is studying The Slasherman Killer real life story, the inspiration behind the comic, Ezra (Baruchel) the artist with Todd, along with his assistant and aspiring comic book artist Aurora (Wilson).

Todd does get to do some press on the journey, but things take a turn for the worse, when reports of murders similar to the comic start happening, with the fear the killer may have returned to continue his killing spree.

Thoughts on Random Acts of Violence

Characters – Todd is a comic book author, his comic has a cult following because of the violent nature behind them and the killer leading character he has created from the mysterious serial killer. He is looking to end the comic book with the next edition, while seeing his creations being re-created by a serial killer. Kathy is Todd’s girlfriend, she has been studying the serial killer for years, looking to interview people about the murders, writing her own book about the real killer. Ezra is the partner of Todd’s, he helps arrange the events and joins them on the road trip and tour. he is trying to talk Todd into not finishing the comic, hoping he will continue to get the money out of the ideas.

PerformancesJesse Williams in the leading role shows us how tormented somebody can become with their creation when it is on the darker side. Jordana Brewster does show the ambitious side to her character, while Jay Baruchel does show more skill behind the camera that he gets to give his onscreen character, he is just the friend for most of the film.

StoryThe story follows a comic book author and his team, as they go on a road trip tour, where they can promote the latest edition, while doing deeper research into what inspired the creation of the character, a real serial killer that was never caught, who just so happens to start killing in way the comic book created once again. The story does use the ideas that we have seen with copycat style horror, only it doesn’t just go down that road, because the killer inspired the creation in the first place. The road trip side of the film starts interesting, with big hints at exploring the truth behind the killer, but sadly this does seem to get dropped before it gets going, as we could have gone down the path of discussing what the comparisons between true crime and comic book spin could have gone into a lot of detail. Sadly this does just become a run of the mile road trip slasher, that doesn’t seem to want to commit to the darker side it is striving for, where it could have gone as twisted as other films in the genre, like Wolf Creek.

HorrorThe horror in the film comes from what the killer does, we seem to only see the aftermath or the first stage of the attack, with the shock value of the creation, the killer has gone out of their way to create.

SettingsThe film is a road trip movie, this does create new locations for our characters to be travelling along, while using the shock moments to add to the settings impact.

Special EffectsThe film does use great effects when it comes to showing us the aftermath of everything that has happened in the killer’s actions.


Scene of the Movie – The first murders shock value.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – We do seem to drop the investigation into the real killings.

Final Thoughts This is a horror that tries to bring us some shock value in the kills, while promising violence, only to hide away from it and trying to bring a twisted comic book character to life.

Overall: Shock Value 101.

ABC Film Challenge – Animation – Q – Quackerz (2016)

Director: Viktor Lakisov

Writer: Viktor Lakisov, John T Mickevich, Vadim Svenshnikov, Vera Sveshnikova-Vaskvich Bob Underwood, Vsevolod Zorin (Screenplay)

Starring: (Voice Talents) Michael Gross, Enn Reitel, Robbie Daymond, Mark DeCarlo, Jesse Corti, Jimmie Wood

 

Plot: The battle between ducks and humans for the place under the sun.

 

Runtime: 1 Hour 21 Minutes

 

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Simple Animation

 

Story: Quackerz starts as we head to the home of the Mandarin ducks with Emperor Peng leading the small group in China, one-member Longway wants to leave like other ducks, tired of being only in one location where he can’t fly. When a new group of the Mallards led by Duckmus arrive, with his daughter Erica becoming friends with Longway.

When the year of the sun duck arrives Longway will learn about his own destiny when the human comes in search for the sun duck for the final preparations for her own desires.

 

Thoughts on Quackerz

 

Characters – Longway is the generic younger member of group, in this case ducks, he wants to escape the life he considers too boring for his own, wanting to see more even though he is destined to lead the group in the future. He will learn his place in the world with this adventure. Emperor Peng Lee has been guarding the ducks for his whole life, protecting Longway from learning the truth he believes in tradition. Duckmus is the leader of the mallards travel for the winter that end up in the wrong location, he is in full belief he is always right no matter what happens. Erica is his daughter that is far more outspoken than he is prepared for, she has seen the new life choice and wants to break free too. These characters are just what you would expect from the story without bringing us anything new to the genre.

StoryThe story here follows two different breeds of ducks that have found themselves together when a destined event is about to happen. We have seen this story many times and with this being targeted at a younger audience we don’t need to get the story going too in depth. The characters do come off generic without offering much new, but it does the basics right without needing to work too hard.

Adventure/Comedy The adventure side of the film comes from the desire that Longway is showing to see the new world, the comedy comes from just how looney toons style is passable.

SettingsThe film keeps us in the Chinese village with a history behind the ducks even if everything seems to be generic.

AnimationThe animation standard for this film is strong not showing any signs of weakness.


Scene of the Movie –
The destiny.

That Moment That Annoyed Me Too generic.

Final ThoughtsThis is an easy to watch animated movie that will give the target audience the entertainment needed.

 

Overall: One for the kids.

Rating