Film Review: Killer Joe

7 Jul

If you go and see this film you’ll never feel quite the same way about Kentucky Fried Chicken ever again…I’ll say no more…but the scene is quite representative of the slightly dubious sexual politics of the film which disturbed me throughout. It didn’t stop me from being gripped or captivated by the central performances all of which were which were brilliant. My goodness Gina Gershon is a good actress… If you haven’t seen Bound, go rent it out it’s an intriguiningly directed film…

Mark Kermode flagged up the uncomfortable sexual politics of this film. Friedkin himself has denied them, or says that that’s not the point, but you can’t quite get away from the exploitative frison of this film. Yes, these characters are on the fringes of their lives; they are pushed to the limits of their existence by their circumstances, but that shouldn’t necessarily turn them all into people who are all on the edge, all unboundaried, and all willing to exploit each other’s roles and freedoms. Even the young female lead is somehow corrupted by her premature sexualisation by Killer Joe, and in a slightly Nabokovian way is trapped in between innocence and premature adulthood.

It is a black comedy, and the humour is transparant. I think your supposed to be both laughing (slightly) at the chicken seen whilst being repelled. And this in-between space is where you are left for the majority of the film. Indeed, I think this is where Friedkin wants you to be, but it is an uncomfortable place to rest in and it is incessant. You need some good space where you can let go for a moment, and think that there is a way out for these characters, and that life is good, and that we can escape our circumstances… sometimes.

It’s based on a play by Tracy Letts and it makes me want to read it to see where the truth of the piece lies- if it is pure exploitation, or the exploitation has some release…

It’s worth a viewing for the great perf0rmances alone. See what you think…..

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