The preteen boys of the '70s who played "war" in their backyards and pored over dirty magazines in their clubhouses are transmogrified into a pair of 21st century twentysomething misfits in writer/director/actor Evan Glodell's wild and woolly contemplation of apocalyptic America. The characters here possess considerably more aptitude for destruction than their younger predecessors. Woodrow (Glodell) and Aiden (Tyler Dawson) are a pair of best friends obsessed with building a flamethrower gun and flame-spewing muscle car named Medusa, after the name of their two-man gang "Mother Medusa."
Joel Hodge's saturated cinematography emphasizes the film's lo-fi "Mad Max" intentions. Countless laws were obviously broken to get this rebellious indie film in the can. Woodrow slips into a doomed relationship with an ethically ungrounded blonde, Milly (well played by Jessie Wiseman). The couple's tortured relationship incites its own brand of scorched-earth emotional expression. Blood and fire rain down. Adventurous, original, and executed with fearless sincerity, "Bellflower" is a thought-provoking commentary on the seething underbelly of an emotionally and intellectually stunted country. Evan Glodell has invented a bold vision of independent cinema that pisses down throat of the "mumblecore" indie movement. Call it "apocalypticore." Here is a movie that sears itself into your eyeballs and brain.
Rated R. 105 mins. (B+) (Four Stars - out of five/no halves)
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