Sunday, February 22, 2015

Everly or A Whole Lotta Dead Whores

6 of 6 Viewers "Liked" "Everly" (2015, USA)
Here's what the citizens of the Overlook Theatre had to say:

KillDozer - "Top notch action, filled with memorable characters. For true fans of Japan style mafia massacres, you can feel the love that was put into this action masterpiece. Solid acting and score will take you back to a time when entertainment was key in action films. The challenge of setting the film in a single room location was well met and only added to the atmosphere. 100% fun and needs to be shared." Collection Worthy - 4 Stars

The Berkeley Blazer - "Lord almighty there is some good stuff in here, specifically Salma. Hayek achieves the perfect pitch of nobility, vulnerability, tenacity, flippancy, and ferocity that the role demands, all while maintaining her irrefutable image as an object of desire. The film built around her starts strong; steady outburst of rising shotgun (literal and metaphorical) violence leaves the mouth agape and the heart full of glee, while sardonic repartee keeps the character dynamics sympathetic and the pacing amusingly brisk. Clever circumstantial touches here and there work: the man on the couch, the one note setting. All work to create an atmosphere that feels playfully experimental and entertaining. Yet, when those pesky and inevitable narrative threads begin to arrive and call for attention, the film quickly deflates into an inane bludgeoning machine with progressively sloppier dialog, torture porn contrivances, and the worst kind of sentimentality, making the viewer care less and less about the film or what happens to it's principle characters. Though this film the ball in the end drops, it's still worth a look if you're partial to this type of film. - 3 Stars

Lord Battle - "Joe Lynch loads a one-bedroom apartment with girls, guns, and gratuitous amounts of violence. "Everly" isn't reinventing the action wheel, she's managed to make it interesting again." - 4 Stars

Huntress - "This movie packs a cities worth of action into a studio apartment and leaves very few moments to catch your breath. Some of the characters felt almost fantastical but I never questioned that they could come from the films corrupted reality, and I loved the creative shots that came out of Joe Lynch's camera doesn't leave the room rule." - 4 Stars

B4DK - "A crazy action movie in a small space. Feels like a different take on "Kill Bill"." - 4 Stars

The Impostor - "Joe Lynch delivers a solid action film with a character we actually rooted for. Salma Hayek stepped up her game for this film, her delivery of the heroine is top notch, took me by surprise. Humor that was placed throughout the film was okay some funnier than others but as a whole Joe did a great job for his first action film. I'm looking forward to see what he comes up with next." - 4 Stars

The Overlook Theatre Final Rating*

Far from being the 35th Dogme film, Everly is a film with creative parameters. Described many a time by director Joe Lynch as "Die Hard" in a room, the main rule put in place is that the camera stays in the room. Now getting to this part of the review would suggest that you've seen the film or just don't mind spoilers (yes this is your final warning), so you then know that this rule is eventually broken. Don't be too hard on writers Yale Hannon and Joe Lynch though, the Dogme movies always broke at least 2-3 rules anyway. The reason I started off talking about a film movement from 1995 is because the rule didn't just limit the camera movement but it also demanded that Everly's apartment now become one of the most important characters in the film. One of my favorite things about this film is the way it shoots the interior of her place so lovingly. With slow pans moving along at a speed perfect to appreciate the architecture and decor (Oh what I would pay for a window like hers!). Like a director using soft light on an actress in a close up. My favorite moments in this film take place after the room has been significantly beaten and holes have been shot through the hallway wall. The holes become windows and an awesome medium for suspense, as we can now not only hear but see her assailants coming to claim their bounty. And all of this is only enhanced by the fact it falls on Christmas.
The movie had some pretty straight forward themes so instead of talking about them I just want to mention how awesome/interesting all of the characters were. This film used the characters that invade Everly's place as a window to the culture outside of the building. Now I understand that a lot of the invaders live in the same building and are just different flavor of whore but this still makes the world feel vast and full of different flavors. In fact, until the end scene where the camera leaves the building and we get Joe's cameo, I imagined this was a Shadowrun/Neo-Tokyo type world. Obviously I was a bit off, but this is a world of mercenaries looking for cash. Everly herself is quite the Street-Samurai, only she doesn't know it yet. One thing I rarely ever comment on about a film is how attractive/unattractive the lead may or may-not be. Salma Hayek is stunning in "Everly", now this could easily be the down fall of a film. Take Oculus for example, the first thing KillDozer said was "When I saw how pretty the lead was I instantly thought I'd hate the film. Since most of the time pretty people mean studio trash.". I already praise Joe Lynch for many reasons but after seeing how he captured and displayed Salma on screen, I realized his genius is much more profound than I had guessed. Treating a busty whore (no offense Salma) as a sympathetic action hero is no easy task. Joe nails it though (excuse the pun, he's married ; ), by showcasing, maybe even exploiting her beauty in the early stages of the film, but covering her up as we move through the story. This suggested to me that as viewers we had been treating her like every other man did in this world, ogling her freely, but now things are getting serious and its time we pay attention to what she has to say and plans on doing about it, or else...
- Lord Battle

And if you're wondering why I refer to Joe Lynch as Joe it's because we are on a first name basis since I feel we are best friends, only after listening to hours upon hours of the Movie Crypt Podcast.
 ( I recommend you do the same!)

*Based on the star ratings turned in by character reviewers, others at the screening got to "Dislike" or "Like" but that does not effect the rating.

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