Frailty (2001) Review
Written by: BlackTequilaKiss
Underrated and underappreciated. I came across this movie a few years ago and everything was done to make it so that every time the movie was showing I somehow missed it. It is has taken me 2 years to finally see the movie in full without a glitch. Ever since the opening scenes I have grown curious of this little film and damn it does not disappoint.
With substance, style but a gritted edge it is different from other horror/thrillers I have seen prior to this and for it’s merit it still works a great line in movie making.
The story as such goes like this: Fenton Meeks makes his presence known as he comes forward to tell the FBI that his brother, Adam, might be the serial killer who calls himself, God’s Hands. A sadistic killer who the FBI have been searching for a long while. Reverting to flashbacks of Meek’s childhood with his father, a man who believed he was on a mission from God to destroy demons inhabiting human’s and the events that follow.
Respect and admiration to Bill Paxton who has an actor is strong and he shows his mettle as a director too in this. Creating a tightly coiled story with plenty of twists and genuine shocks he entertained and surprised me completely.
This film really is riveting to watch.
Cast & Characters: Bill Paxton as the father of the two boys, Meiks, is a dark piece of work. Disturbing, he gets beneath the skin. Shivers cascaded up my back as I could not fathom how creepy the character was. He has moments of redemption and it is to Paxton’s strength that he creates a character that does not define a stereotypical horror character but rather a complex character with morals, who believes he is doing the work of god and ultimately is assured he is right. Great portrayal of a character from a matured and well-rounded actor.
Matthew McConaughey as Fenton, well aside from this I have not watched him in anything else but he was fantastic in this. With a solid performance and complete conviction in the art of his character he creates a presence among the screen and garnered my attention whenever a scene required him. Superb performance.
In terms of the cinematography, music and special F/X (if any) this is my take:The musical composure for the more deft scenes were done with sweet aplomb. Eerie but intense it creates a hard edge through some of the more darker scenes. With added momentum it adds a notch to the movie and an already intense plotline. It did the job and well. As for the special effects because most of which was implied, there was barely any.
However deaths you do see are either in focus of the movie or brutal. Some of the deaths especially are hard to watch due to the severity and unknown factor of wherever the people were guilty or innocent. Be open minded but as an whole it was a good wholesome element that serves a purpose in the long run. Done well.
Cinematography wise, the camera angles and shots between night and day are fluid; crisp and well thought out. At concise angles, moving steadily the camera never goes to the point of making you feel dizzy. Colours are dispersed and varied, the lingering of the sun during taut scenes works greatly and adds a grace, the night scenes equally as stunning as moonlight bounces off the walls and floors. Shot to beautiful effect it was all kept in transition for the movie and gave the movie a little elegance which I respected greatly.
If there is a complaint and this is minor but still it is there, it’s that the movie does sometimes slow down a pace. Talking becomes the main objective which in itself is not a bad thing but when statements from previous scenes seem to be prominently repeated it did have a tendency to lose some of the edge that makes the movie stand out. The tiniest of a disappointment in an otherwise sharp film.
It comes down to the simple fact that Frailty is a smart, thought-provoking film that works equally as well as an horror. It pulls you back and forth, twists, turns and makes you think a lot more than many films of late (barring the beautiful Splinter).
Paxton earns congratulations for creating a movie that is more than atmosphere and shows the diversity of a film, shows you the dark seeds planted in family lives. I love this movie because it pulls you in and leaves you breathless till the truly shocking finale.
Dark, morbid, intense and unrefined this is a movie every horror fan ought to strive to watch.
A thing of beauty this movie will hit a nerve. I hope people will take the time to seek this movie out. A wild ride into the night, this is a movie to be on the look for. Fantastic.