Recently, I've become aware that certain films are able to transcend the medium by being completely self-assured in their atmospheres…
First they send in their drone... Then they find their queen.
A lonely waitress with a tragic past, Agnes rooms in a run-down motel, living in fear of her abusive, recently paroled ex-husband. But when Agnes begins a tentative romance with Peter, an eccentric, nervous drifter, she starts to feel hopeful again - until the first bugs arrive...
I seriously can't believe it. After my wife subjected her poor mid 70's parents to Killer Joe last night, she somehow convinced them, by some sly Ashley Judd trickery, to watch Bug tonight. I suspect they aren't going to visit anymore.
Me, I was smiling all the way through. Not from observing my in-laws uncomfortable, but well timed, reactions, ( well, maybe a little ) but rather that on a short re-watch this film didn't lose a speck of it's brilliant luster.
After being completely gob-smacked by Friedkin’s Killer Joe last year, I was eagerly anticipating seeing his previous collaboration with playwright Tracy Letts. I was expecting good things, but not the incredible ride I was taken on.
Right from the opening scene, Friedkin conveys so much with such masterful economy, it’s staggering. We start with a distant point of light, as we move in closer and closer you feel the isolation and loneliness, and you feel that something is arriving. The simple use of the harsh ringing of a telephone elicits a sense of menace and dread.
Perhaps we’re seeing a visual metaphor of Peter’s elliptical approach to Agnes. He sees her tiny point of light, and is drawn to her…
Infestation is everywhere in Bug attacking the pores of the skin, slowly taking over the mind, large pests leaving prison to invade lives, secret organisations on the hunt looking to exterminate their prey. It's a cacophony of disease surrounding two people holed up inside their own lonely lives, barricaded into a motel room, seeking refuge in the corners of their disappearing sanity.
This intense psychodrama quietly lays its seed early on then draws you in slowly, almost deceptively, to a climax that will leave you wide-eyed at two actors totally off the leash. Ashley Judd and Michael Shannon turn in performances of the like you rarely get to see, or which a director rarely inspires. An actor on their game…
Agnes White (Ashley Judd) lives in a run-down motel. Her son has gone missing years ago. Her violent ex-husband has recently been released from prison. She receives silent phone calls that worry her. She meets Peter Evans (Michael Shannon) through a friend. He is acting very strange and seems to be a dangerous person but Agnes allows him to stay with her for awhile. As they begin to know each other, she finds out from him that he was used by the military in different experiments, ran away and now is followed by secret agencies.
This movie is insane. Most of it takes place in the motel room which creates a claustrophobic atmosphere rarely achieved in other movies. Ashley Judd…
Bug had me from the very first scene.
Black screen with credits. An old rotary phone rings.
It is answered by a woman. Hello? (pause). Hello?
An aerial view of the middle of nowhere with what looks to be 5 buildings surrounded by nothing but empty fields and a highway.
It's eerie and ominous already. Someone somewhere down below is getting calls. Wherever she is we know she is isolated. Alone.
The camera keeps moving forward. She is in one of these buildings.
Who is calling her? How long has this been going on?
The camera begins to settle on a decrepit motel. Motel. Is she hiding from someone? Has he found her?
We are now just above the motel…
I have no idea what the hell I just saw, but this was pretty fucked up and awesome at the same time !
Damn, am I the only one feeling really itchy ?????
A key text in the ever-popular "Michael Shannon shows up so you know he's going to go nuts" sub-genre. A claustrophobic to a fault examination of two people who very slowly lose their grip on reality. At times it shows its roots as a play a little too strongly, but for the most part its intense focus heightens the creeping uneasy.
Champs-Elysées Film Festival -- Retrospective : William Friedkin
at one point i asked myself "can this/they get even more insane ??" and well, yes.
also that blue lighted ambiance reflected in the aluminium-covered house is such a delight.
William Friedkin's BUG, based on the play by Tracy Letts, is a disturbing psychological thriller that really goes deep. The final act of the film showcases some of Michael Shannon's best acting, and Ashley Judd is just tremendous in the central role.
Kermodes fav... Bug. Hot damn...was that intense. Stunning full on performance by General Zod
I really have nothing to say about this film. I can't tell if I love it or hate it. It's definitely well-made and extremely intense. I had no idea Ashley Judd was this amazing of an actress.
Fängt gut an, und wird ziemlich überdreht.
Not quite the tour de force I'd been expecting after reading the reviews but a nicely understated and ambiguous psychological horror.
Film Number 12 of Aditya's Scavenger Hunt Challenge No. 2
Day 12, Task No. 19 - A film featuring bugs or insects
A man, a woman, a motel room. Oh, the horror that was unleashed within. William Friedkin's Bug is an overwhelming and delirious depiction of paranoia and obsession. Agnes is an extremely nervous woman, trying her best to avoid her abusive ex-husband. When Agnes takes shelter in a run down motel, she meets Peter. Agnes and Peter, who both desperately want someone to connect with, begin to form a relationship, and there's when things begin to go very, very wrong.
Peter is convinced that he has been infected with a swarm of miniscule bugs, right after he and…
Bugs.... Bugs? Maybe. Lots of tin foil though. But really folks, this one is a favorite of mine. A valid portrayal of paranoia. There's lots of little things in this film you won't notice your first viewing but after you've seen it a time or two after you'll notice the directors eye to detail.
Many favorites, as well as a small handful of films that I don't care for... in no particular order (1960-2014).