Mad Dog Time

Mad Dog Time ★★★★

Ebert famously detests this, but I found a lot to dig my teeth into here. It's an absurd farce - part existential comedy, part Lynchian surrealism, part loving homage to/parody of the gangster genre - but it somehow works. Each actor pushes the envelope of acting tics in their performances, but it only adds to the delirious style on display here. There's a sense that these characters are only Beckett-esque cyphers, moving around artificial settings and gradually killing each other off; there's no world outside the spaces they inhabit. In that way, it's a kind of meta-cinematic take on the genre, where these characters are fully aware they're merely pawns on a chessboard, waiting to get shot. It's not the most well-crafted of films (it can get pretty gimmicky at times, and it's fairly rough around the edges), but I think it's a pretty interesting work, nonetheless.

I don't usually say this, but I just think Ebert didn't get it.