Monday, May 30, 2022

Method Directing


Serial killer mockumentaries have become a common subgenre in recent years, though so many run the risk of having the same ending: if you're playing it straight, doesn't the star subject HAVE to eventually slaughter the camera crew? 

Gillian Wallace Horvat's I Blame Society finds a pretty great way to skirt that issue: our multi-talented killer happens to also (wo)man the camera. Everybody wins!

Quick Plot: Gillian is a struggling filmmaker looking for some validation and stuck on the best compliment she's ever received: that she would make a great murderer. She begins a documentary exploring how she could execute the perfect crime on the perfect victim (the shallow and cruel girlfriend of her pal Chase) before pissing off enough people that she abandons the project. 

Three years later, Gillian is having an even harder time trying to make it in the industry. Sure, there are token opportunities for "people like her" but they're still at the mercy of dude bros who toss around words like "intersectionality" and "inclusivity" just for the sake of meeting quotas. 

So what's an ambitious but aimless professional to do but the one thing she hasn't tried? Gillian goes for it.

I Blame Society is an incredibly funny little black comedy of a horror movie. Sure, it calls to mind Man Bites Dog and a few similar stories, but writer/director/star Gillian Wallace Horvat is so clear-headed in her offbeat tone that it ends up feeling entirely fresh. Her targets are clear, and her humor is poisonous (literally).

High Points
The entire execution of Gillian's first (possibly accidental) murder is so perfectly crafted in how ridiculously it unfolds that it helps to set the rest of the film's tone down the perfectly offbeat path

Low Points
Yes, Gillian is ultimately a terrible person, so if you're the kind of film fan bothered by that, be warned

Lessons Learned
NBC's Hannibal did a lot of things right, but apparently, depicting murder realistically was not one of them

If people threw computers out the window all the time, we'd be tripping on laptops every day

To be in "New York shape" means you have brown hair and probably smoke

I Blame Society is millennial self-aware horror at its best. Have a go of it on Shudder (I've been saying that a lot lately, haven't I?).

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