Naked Killer (赤裸羔羊): a cop that vomits every time he picks up a gun has to catch a killer that targets men, and stabs / chops off their meat & two veg… Really .The film does nothing to hide its terrible editing, camerawork and flaky acting – feels like a Troma/no-budget movie. The ‘plot’ is impossibly ridiculous and the script / translations are just mental – “why are you pointing your pink pistol at me” & “I’ll squeeze your tits ’til they burst” being just a couple of choice lines. There’s unprecedented levels of flirty lesbian conversations and boob rubbing – definitely a film made exclusively for teenage boys. On the upside: the girls are pretty, and hidden amongst everything else, there are some good fight-scenes (although poorly put together)- that’s… about… it. Naked Killer boils to being a standard assassin/thriller story with as much camp, random, slapstick, bawdy, ridiculous, male-fantasy moments the runtime would allow to throw at it – all very Asian and very 90s. Perhaps it’s the UK version, but the film feels so random and disjointed that it has to be heavily cut – either that or it IS just awful. Despite having properly set expectations for a Category III film called “Naked Killer” this was plain disappointing, although, If you have a ‘thing’ for lesbian Asian assassins, then this is definitely one for you.
Sleepers: after a prank goes wrong 4 childhood friends are sent to a correctional center, where their lives are changed forever. Most obviously, this features a powerhouse of actors doing great acting, like nothing I’ve watched in a loooong time. The kids, all great; the adults, just as good. De Niro, brilliant (why can’t he do this more often); Hoffman, top form; Bacon, creep-tastic; The King, not overdone… It’s like watching a masterclass. The story’s not the most upbeat, but is told expertly and handled tastefully. It’s well-directed and topped off with a solid, populist soundtrack. I genuinely have no idea where this film’s been hiding all my life. Despite the risqué material, this is a Grade A tour de force in story telling.
The Woodsman: The story of a (potentially) reformed child molester being re-located beside a school is never going to win over the mainstream. Not being content with that this further shuns audiences with its very slow pace and low-rent, no-frills style. The main characters are all are completely damaged, making them difficult to connect with, but adding shocking realism. On the happy side, the actors in this tear the house down with their performances – not lest Kevin Bacon, who gives us an unquestionable career highlight. His missus, Kyra Sedgwick, keeps the ball up in the air and Even Mos Def refuses to drop it, pulling out some top drawer action. The paedophilia theme means that this throws up some of the hardest scenes you’ll ever watch, especially the one on the park bench – if you don’t see that through your fingers you have no soul! Difficult one to watch, but it’s always good seeing a big hitter take on, and nail, such an ill-advised role.