Saturday, August 15, 2015

Frailty (USA, 2002)

Nine Things About the Movie Frailty

1. This is one of the most underrated psychological horror movies of all times.

2. It's theatrical release was really only into art houses, and it's still pretty unknown today - probably because the sensitive subject matter and extremely dark undertones keep it from being talked about much.

3. Matthew McConaughey kind of stars in it as a guy named Fenton, but most of the movie is a flashback to Fenton's childhood in Texas, where he lived with his younger brother Adam and their father (played by Bill Paxton, who also directed this movie). One morning, the father tells his sons that he got a vision from God and now he needs to destroy demons. Adam is excited to help his father, but Fenton is much more skeptical. As Fenton learns what his father means by "destroying demons", the three develop a strained relationship.

4.  I can say no more about the plot. The less you know, the better, whether you want to see the movie or not.

5.  The script and the acting are so tight and tense that it manages to be a pretty shocking horror film even though it shows almost no blood.

6. The movie makes some serious statements about religion. It also makes you reflect on family and what you would (and wouldn't) do for them.

7. There are different levels of sadness and horror here, depending on how deep you want to look into the darkness.

8. I've seen the movie four times in the past 13 years and I'm still chewing on the ending. And the title.

9. This is a bold, unflinching contemplation of the terrors of faith and the trauma of childhood. It's a legitimate "hidden gem" of American cinema, and will probably always remain that way.