When Shoot 'em Up rotated to the front of the film fest HQ spinner rack, we knew we were in for a very special 86 minutes of cinematic profundity.
The title of the movie does not lie. There is shooting, and the shooting is...up. (Actually, I don't really know where the "up" comes in, but "Shoot 'em real good, a lot" isn't as catchy.)
Director Michael Davis has made other films, all of which I have neglected to see--even his screenwriting debut, Double Dragon, which sounds like something everyone would love since it features Alyssa Milano, Mark Dacascos, and The Lady and the Tramp II's Scott Wolf. And it's based on a video game. And there's kicking. But here at film fest HQ, we didn't watch that--we screened Davis's newest feature: Shoot 'em Up.
I took a bathroom break about 45 minutes into the movie, and when I came out: more shooting. I apparently missed the plot, which dealt with some baby harvesting/gun control hot button issues, during my little break. The five minutes of missed plot did not hamper my enjoyment of this movie, which is one ridiculous set piece after another. This movie is one scene after another about a badass holding a baby, shooting everything in sight while chomping carrots. That's it. It doesn't aspire to more. The baby is clearly a doll in several sequences, and the filmmakers don't seem to mind one bit. You have to admire their willingness to abandon any pretense at realism. This is a gleeful romp through the streets of violence, and it has no redeeming qualities other than its self-conscious joy.
Here at film fest HQ, we thought it was a terrible movie, but an entertaining one nonetheless. It cleansed our palatte for the next film. It prepared us for the immense epic of cinematic genius that would soon follow in The First Annual GeniusboyFiremelon Bi-Coastal 24-Hour (Non-Consecutive) Film Festival. We were ready.
Next up: Batman Forever (1995)