Instant Watch Pick of The Week: Red State
This movie has garnered a small cult following and some controversy thanks to director Kevin Smith. He originally wanted to auction it off to be distributed but then did the distribution himself. This caused the movie to not be widely released in theaters. If you saw it in the theaters you were considered lucky or a fool. It was playing in DC for $40, yea I can wait for it to come to dvd. Almost wish I hadn’t.
Red State stars Michael Parks and John Goodman and the film hits close to home with its subject matter. It follows the 5 point church led by Parks’ character Abin Cooper. They are modeled in the vein of the Westboro Baptist crowd. The film starts with them protesting the funeral of a gay teenager and then jumps to high school student Travis(Michael Angarano) who sets up a sex hook up through craigslist for him and 2 of his friends. They leave for the hook up and then learn it is a trap. The woman is a member of the 5 point church and kidnaps the 3 teens to make them pay for their sins. John Goodman’s character of Special Agent Keenan, is the one who gets sent in with his team to find out whats going on at the church grounds.
Right from the jump this movie will fool you. I really didn’t have a clear sense of who is a vital character until the end of the movie. Certain characters will die when you are least expecting it and it does a great job of keeping you in the story. One of the other reasons this movie appeals to me is the religious fanaticism that displayed in the movie. I have made no secrets as to what I think of most religions and how people blindly believe words written over 2000 years ago. Religion is a very scary institution to me because of the power it can have over people and this film showcases the extreme on that notion. I have to hand it to Kevin Smith, he made a very realistic horror movie and done it right. I can clearly see why he had trouble getting it distributed, but in the end he may have made one of his best films to date. Its a great ride, its a little slow to start but it picks up in a very big way and has an ending which I thought was just “perfect”.