Dead Kids: Movie Review

Featuring high school teens in a crime drama, it would be easy to anticipated that mature themes takes a back seat over immature hijinx. But Mikhail Red's "Dead Kids" begs to differ. While the characters struggle to comprehend reality against their young and feeble mindsets, the film tackles societal topics bigger and deeper than anticipated.

A socially awkward teen bonds with a group of misfits who plot to take out the school's arrogant rich kid until their kidnapping scheme turns deadly.

As expected, one of the biggest upshots for "Dead Kids" were its visuals and cinematography. Mikhail Red's undeniably eye to make each scene pop was at full force. Several scenes had us in awe as each were vibrant and dark at the same time capturing the grimy nature that is Metro Manila. On top of that was the great chemistry between the cast of characters. Most of them were given enough time to develop and showcase their own personas and personal dilemmas. Some had greedy reasons why they did what they did while some had to do it out of necessity and desperation. It doesn't make things right but the varied reasons of these high school kids to scheme a kidnapping felt grounded and relatable. Unfortunately, outside the men, it seems that the women in this film was a tacked on idea. Both Gabby Padilla and Sue Ramirez were non-essential and almost non-existent. The film could have done without their characters easily which was a shame since they could have added so much more into specific character's backstories. Another confounding issue was the film's soundtrack. Something just felt off about the songs they used forcing things to be nostalgic and hip. Overall, "Dead Kids" was a great effort from Mikhail Red as director and his brother Nikolas as writer. Here's hoping they could craft more works together soon.

Rating: 4 reels

Why you should watch it:
  • Great camera work as usual from Mikhail Red
  • Superb acting and chemistry from the young cast
Why you shouldn't watch it:
  • Some characters felt under-utilized
  • The soundtrack just didn't jive
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