Thursday, October 30, 2014

Horns review: No.

This review was first posted on Geek Crusade . Verdict: 1 out of 5 stars. The only noteworthy character development in this tangled mess of...

This review was first posted on Geek Crusade.

Verdict: 1 out of 5 stars. The only noteworthy character development in this tangled mess of a storyline is Daniel Radcliffe struggling valiantly to break out of his childhood role of Harry Potter in order to be taken serious as an actor. Wasn’t taking off his clothes on stage enough?
In Horns, Daniel Radcliffe plays Iggy Perrish, a small town DJ devoted to his childhood sweetheart, Merrin Williams (Juno Temple). One evening, the two get into a heated argument at a local diner, and Merrin is found raped and brutally murdered in the woods the next day. Iggy naturally becomes the prime suspect.

This somehow leads to horns sprouting from his head and everyone confessing their innermost (and often disturbing) desires to him. This often results in them engaging in said activities as well (read: doctor and nurse having sex midway through an operation, two policemen having sex in the car during a stakeout – basically a lot of inappropriate sex scenes).
“Stop having sex in front of me!!” Source: Golden Village Pictures

In essence, it’s just a highly disturbing and confusing indie film where we see Radcliffe playing an antihero instead of “The Boy Who Lived”.

But I guess one should expect a product like this coming from director Alexandre Aja, who brought us the classic horror horrible flick, The Hills Have Eyes (2006) – a show which combined rape, dismemberment and gore into one of the most painful 106 minutes of my life.

I don’t think you can blame me for being traumatised. After all, The Hills Have Eyes ranked third on the 10 Most Thing’s list of “10 Most Disturbing Horror Movies In The World”.
“Please allow me to introduce myself.” Source: Golden Village Pictures

My honest opinion is that Aja wanted to make a film that was slightly more palatable for audiences while keeping to his obvious interest in directing scenes of rape and gore. His solution to this was casting Radcliffe as the protagonist.

Although I’m not sure if this strategy works, it’s definitely a change from seeing Radcliffe playing someone other than Harry Potter. While his performance in some scenes seemed a little stiff (no pun intended), I found his acting consistent and his American accent passable.

Which is saying something given that I’m probably more used to him speaking in a British accent and hurling spells at Voldemort. On the upside, you do get to see Radcliffe and his abs. So do look out for that if you’re still thinking of catching Horns in the theatres.
“You’re horny, Harry.” Source: Golden Village Pictures

Horns did, however, show that Radcliffe has the potential to break out of his signature Harry Potter role and move on to greater, more grown up projects. But it was probably too big of a first step for him to take.

After all, I’m assuming that a large proportion of the viewers are either ardent Harry Potter fans, or critics waiting to be blown away by his stellar performance, which the script did not allow for him to deliver. I’m sorry to tell these people that they are going to walk out feeling disappointed.

Or maybe I’m just too mainstream for this dark and twisted world of goodness knows what.

Horns opens in Singapore today. Let us know what you think of it if you do decide to burn 123 minutes of your life!

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