Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases
Nicholas Hoult – Stelfox
Georgia King – Rebecca
Craig Roberts – Darren
Joseph Mawle – Trellick
Jim Piddock – Derek Sommers
Ed Skrein – Rent
Yes. As the famous saying goes: I needed that like a hole in the head. I did wonder how the movie would pan out when I sat down to watch Kill Your Friends; Nicholas Hoult being the lead protagonist, surrounded more by a mix of unfamiliar actors than familiar ones. The theme was the main thing that grabbed my attention – black comedy. I’ve always been a fan of this genre, but the movie itself needs to be directed well with actors who deliver the comedy at exactly the right moments so that it works perfectly. Otherwise, the movie will just flop and become black – without the comedy.
Kill Your Friends was a prime example of the latter. I was sorely disappointed with the (at times) irrelevant script and boring plot. In a nutshell, the movie displays how selfishly twisted music moguls were back in the 1990’s. To the point of killing their friends to get to where they wanted to be. This particular story focuses on Steven Stelfox and his desperate urge to make it to the top. And it involves a lot of – perhaps too much – drug taking. The opening scene sees him drinking and sniffing various substances, and this continues heavily for the next 102 minutes. For the recreational drug user, Kill Your Friends is divine. For us non-users, it’s probably like a non-smoker hanging out with smokers on a cigarette break for 102 minutes. You just sort of look on as the mundane, unnecessary activity continues.
Kill Your Friends.
From the title, you’d expect a deliciously macabre, black comedy whereby the lead character goes around – unsurprisingly – killing his friends. But in reverse, this movie doesn’t involve any such event at all. Except one singular person. Unlike the title suggests, Steven kills one friend. The movie then continues its tedious display of drug use and foul-mouthed behaviour, until the end when a second person is killed. And that’s your lot. Some black comedies nail it, with the lead character performing so many gruesome acts, one after the other, that the movie fits perfectly into the genre it’s supposed to be and evokes audience reaction for that reason. Kill Your Friends just turned out to be one of those disappointing features that uses a strong title to cover up total bullshit; selling itself as something it’s not. Like going to see a play advertising itself as a black comedy, but turns out to be A Midsummer Night’s Dream or something.
Nicholas Hoult seems to radiate a personality similiar to that of a clown most of the time. The actor displays some bloody weird facial expressions during Kill Your Friends. Although effective, they would’ve been better off on a stage. At Christmas. Perhaps in a pantomime..
I’m all for actors who use genuine talent and skill to portray various emotions, but Hoult was more like a cartoon character, constantly. Mad wide eyes, deep frown and snarled lips, he seemed to dilute his character’s impact hugely and turn black comedy into circus tent, thus coming across as – what us British call – a bit of a twat. Like I said, his facial expressions were effective – he just seemed a bit out of place in a movie like this. He may be trying to get popular in Hollywood by fronting a movie by himself, but there was something about this one that made it – and him – flop.
Kill Your Friends made me feel more sick than satisfied. Slit throats, consistent drug sniffing, gluttony, chauvinism and paedophilia all contributed to one of the most loathsome movies I’ve ever seen at the cinema. The effect of these elements was far from black comedy, and more – wrong.
In a nutshell, this movie tells the audience that music producers of the 90’s were selfish bastards who cared about nothing but how much money they had in the bank, vagina under the covers, cocaine slid in the back of their wallet. And how personal success mean’t more than life itself.
Kill Your Friends is one of those ‘randoms’ many people have never heard of. And it should stay that way.
If you pay to watch this movie, you’re doing something wrong.