Indie Gems: Red State

"Stop being so middle class."

The usually comedic Kevin Smith brings us Red State, his indie thriller that got a lot of attention at this year's Sundance film festival. Both good, (the film itself) bad, (Some people thought he was selling out/full of himself.) and hilarious. (the westboro baptist church tried to picket it) Oh, I didn't capitalize the name of that church cult because it doesn't deserve it...moving on...

Travis, (Michael Angarano) Jared, (Kyle Gallner )and Billy Ray (Nicholas Braun) are high school boys that answer an online ad for group sex. The woman behind that ad: Sarah Cooper. (Melissa Leo) Sarah drugs them and brings them to her religious cult led by Abin Cooper. (Michael Parks) When the police follow up with an unrelated weapons charge, all hell breaks loose.

It's pretty obvious that the Five Points church is a direct jab at the westboro church, they even name drop them at one point.  The film is brutally honest when making it's points about religion and politics and how they don't mix.  This is a very different thing we're seeing from Smith. While the motives of the characters are pretty obvious Smith still takes his time to explain them. The film is full of some pretty impressive camera work, I must say. Quick shots and some great chase scenes.

The ending isn't going to work for everybody. I myself, was a bit disappointed, but I still appreciate the fact that it's different and honest and stuck so true to it's point. In a way I wanted the typical cookie cutter ending, but that's not what was given, and I'm glad. Red State stands on it's soap box and makes it's point. It's damn impressive point. 

Recommended: Yes

Grade: B+

Memorable Quote: "Well he was standing unnaturally close to me.." Joseph Keenan (John Goodman)


  1. i really found this film nauseating. i'm happy you were able to enjoy it though.

  2. Out of all of the 2011 films I've seen thus far, this is one of my favourites.


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