Unhinged2020 | Derrick Borte
After a confrontation with an unstable man at an intersection, a woman becomes the target of his rage.
Michael Papajohn | Scheryl W Brown | Lucy Faust | Samantha Beaulieu | Vivian Fleming-Alvarez | Sylvia Grace Crim | Devyn A. Tyler | Anne Leighton | Stephen Louis Grush | Juliene Joyner | Austin P. McKenzie | Jimmi Simpson | Gabriel Bateman | Caren Pistorius | Russell Crowe
|Mark Bladt 2020-11-21|
In the nearly dead Covid-19 era theatres “Unhinged” was one of the first new movies that premiered in theatres. It is not a big movie neither plot wise nor financially, and that may have been a factor, when the production company decided to release the movie. Because of Covid-19 “Unhinged” did not have to compete with other big movies, that would normally kill “Unihinged” at the box office.
The movie is directed by Derrick Borte, who hasn’t directed much more I know of except “The Jonesses” from 2009.
The two main characters of the movie are, the nameless male antagonist portrayed by Russell Crowe, and the female protagonist Rachel portrayed by Caren Pistorius.
They have both reached the final phase of the respective divorces. Russell Crowe’s unnamed character has lost his job, suffers from a pill addiction and decides to end his divorce by killing his ex-wife and her lover with a large hammer and proceed to burn down their house. Rachel of the other hand tries to balance her divorce and work situation in much more civilized way.
The two characters meet in traffic, where Rachel honks her horn aggressively at Russll Crowe’s character. After he catches up with her, he apologizes in a kind of weird way and asks for her to do the same. Rachel refuses, and the unnamed man then decides to destroy her life and kill everyone she loves before committing “suicide by cop” as he puts it.
The movie is simple. Man chases woman. Man destroys everything in his path. Woman is pushed. Woman fights back. But it also claims to tell a story about, how we are living in a society with a lot of pressure, stress, and aggressions. However, it conveys it’s message in an extreme and simplistic way. The message is quicky pushed to the background and overshadowed by the story about Rachel vs. the aggressive man.
In the movie Russell Crowe is visually large in several ways. He looks like he weighs over 150kg, he huffs and puffs loudly, sweats excessively, even his wristwatch is large, his car is a huge dark truck that roars like a dangerous predator, and when he meets Rachel he is placed high above her in his truck and even through his physical placement his seems threatening. I During most of the movie Russell Crowe seems like he wants to crawl out through his window to strangle Rachel with his huge hands. Rachel on the other hand seems like a frightened and stressed animal being chased through the city trying to safe her life.
Until she decides to fight back.
The cast is limited, but they do a fine job, the budget of $33.000.000 is relatively small and as mentioned the story is pretty simple. What the director does with his limited resources is work with camera, colors and editing. The movie has no large explosions or other effects where you would be able to see the limited budget. There was no scene that made me think ”this could have been done better or most impressively”. They use close ups, sound and colors actively to visualize the mood of the characters.