I’m not over it yet, guys. This Marilyn Manson phase, I mean. Y’all know by know how crazy I am about MM, but lately I’ve been having a total obsessive break as it was the 2000 era of Holy Wood all over again (I didn’t misspelled Hollywood, that’s how Manson’s record it’s called).
Source: Tom Hollands Terror Time
This regression has brought me to watch his most late film participation: Let Me Make you a Martyr(2016), one of those indie films oddly directed by two debutants young filmmakers, Corey Asraf and John Swab, attracted to the old cowboy story made new with a bit of murkiness and existentialism.
Apparently it's a trend.
It’s not like I’ve had directed a movie before, but I can’t really conceive how two directors can coexist in the making of the same very film. Any control freak would understand what I’m talking about: Creative decisions... Between two brains! Holy ego-conflicts Batman! But, it happened, it worked, it's a celluloid miracle that I’ve just realized… so sadly this deed is not making it into the countdown.
Source: Tom Hollands Terror Time
Long story short, I watched the film. And as a very daunting challenge to myself I decided to give it shot and writing a movie review (kind of)… for the first time! I’m a daredevil you might say.
So, ladies and gents: here are 10 thoughts I had while watching Let Me Make You a Martyr (LMMYAM), if my opinion is any praiseworthy. You, who are still reading, thanks in advance.
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD.
1- Now, to be an indie movie… you know, it’s very well made. Doesn’t have like really weird shots and scenes that make you wonder “why the heck am I watching this from the perspective of the pet cat?”, or any shaky cameras chasing the action (so cliché) nor subjective angles whatsoever. This might be the slightly-educated-in-film-making-me talking but, thank you for using the underrated average composisitions we all love! Points up to the great audio recording BTW.
2- Let’s get this out of the way: Marilyn Manson is on it, so yay! For those who love The Reverend and go completely nuts everytime we get to see his weird self on the screen, I did love very much the dark scenes he’s on. Specially the very last where he just awkwardly waves to the suburban wife after he just left a home where he killed two people and finding a little girl inside the truck of his new card.
To be honest, the fact that Marilyn Manson is on the movie could be the only reason most of us deign to watch LMMYAM.
3- You start watching the movie... and all of the sudden you don’t know if the story it’s all scrambled, or it’s a loop, or there’s some cifi going on until the very end. Only then you realize, the story it's being shown in the form of the main character's flashbacks and pieces of what he knows...
Still I feel there’s a bunch of chunks missing. The storytelling is just too ambitious it’s confusing: first they created a loop: the movie starts showing a scene from the end. Why? Beats me, we really didn’t need to know Pope (Marilyn Manson) had to kill Brown (Gore Abrams) in advance. In fact, this scene show at the beginning deforms Brown’s characters making it look like a bad guy, wich he’s not.
Second: The whole “purgatory” scene extended through the whole film came up too late. I now is meant to be the conduct of reason to explain the plot, but failed at clearing things up. Unless its point was to confuse us until the very end… in that case, well played?
Third: Some of Drew's (Niko Nicotera) flashbakcs are unnecesary, as some characters. If it's flashbacks we're seeing, that still doesn't explain how he knows certain things, mostly because he wasn't there, like Uncle Marvin's incineration.
Source: We are movie stories
4- I could only hear one voice in the whole script, the characters are interesting but they needed more developing, more voice of their own. The dialogues were just too much of the same despite the differeces between characters. Missed opportunity there.
Doesn't anybody noticed even the drug dealers were talking in metaphores? Or is it like a common thing?
5-** Rooney (Gracie Grenier), the kid… WTF?** I have no idea why she’s there, why Hondo (George Carroll) had her all tied up in a shack? Why she’s given to June (Sam Quartin), why June says she wants to keep her even if she’s planning on dying (the theory of the salvation of the innocent dies there, I guess), why they can’t remember she was left inside of the trunk? Why they just don't get her home or the police?
For a moment I thought she was some kind of idol, angel, mutant, alien... What’s her meaning? -looking into the horizon with a deep gaze-
*Source: Cinema Clock)
6- Now, I might have been distracted somehow but... Pope was hired to kill Drew by his adopted father Larry (Mark Boone Junior) but ended up murdering EVERYONE, except Drew. What happened, what did I miss?
Was this character a spooky way to amend the good balance of the universe? I mean, the “good guys” kill themselves to be “free” so the bad guys had to die too? In that case, why he had to “put down” the junkie uncle Marvin and Larry? They were a threat to what exactly?
7- So many questions… that are far from stopping because here’s another one: What’s the deal with the drug thing? Everyone’s hooked, but again, it’s not a major plot factor. Yes, June was a junkie and went of a killing rampage to Hondo's trailer; but if she needed a reason to off herself to be set free, this wasn’t it. She definitely didn’t show any regret of using.
AND, she's a prostitue in a low life joint so, pop culture has always told us: she's olbviously an addict.
Was part of Drew's plan to come back after so many years just to get his uncle fixed... specially when he admits he's clean? Why would you do that?
8- On the other hand there are some pretty hard things about the mafia business that granted a raw and dark hue to the story: protitution, kidnapping, drug abuse, rape. I do think Drew’s rape presumably ordered by Larry, his self proclaimed adoptive father, was particularly harsh to watch and unexpected. Talking about atmosphere setting. Thumbs up.
9- When did all became a strange story about life-death-suicide-redemption? I just thought Drew came to his hometown for revenge, closure or even to get June out of it; but in the end he just “suicides” the love of his life (who happened to asked him to kill her while dope) and then shoots himself in the heart. What is all this?
Source: We are movie stories
10- Too many plot holes. This is one scene, Pope it’s sitting right in front of Drew, he’s about to kill him; but all of the sudden Drew appears at a chinese restaurant where he’s picked up up by Brown and shows him he’s got a bullet whole in his side. And then Pope goes rogue killing Larry, Brown and taking Rooney for a ride.
If this is a movie about "reasons" instead f the actions, I failed to see more than a few. I said “wait, what?” so many times while watching the movie you don’t even know.
How did I do it guys?
In the end, this is a story about two lovers who reunite after a long time of growing together as adoptive siblings under the care of a criminal. All this while being chases by a creepy hitman. Trust me, it sound better than it really is.
Want a gratuitous strange performance by Manson?, go for it! Because an old redneck MM smudged in fake blood reciting some old cherokee legend it's all worth getting.