Random Acts of Violence: Movie Review

If you're thinking that "Random Acts of Violence" will be a mix of comedy, thrill, and gore then you'll be coming into the experience with the wrong expectations. While it's director may be known for his comedic background, Jay Baruchel's "Random Acts of Violence" is a serious and extremely visceral experience. You won't laugh and it will leave you feeling uncomfortable. But ultimately, we enjoyed it even with its limitations.

Comic book creator Todd Walkley (Jesse Williams) is about to end his series "Slasherman" which dignified the murders of the I-90 Killer. With his wife Kathy (Jordana Brewster), assistant Aurora (Niamh Wilson) and best friend, Ezra (Jay Baruchel), they embark on road trip to promote his upcoming final comic book. But when people start getting murdered again, it soon becomes clear that a crazed fan is using Todd’s “Slasherman” comic as inspiration for the killings. Todd faces the stark reality that he should have taken his artistic responsibilities and moralities a lot more seriously.
If you want disturbing then "Random Acts of Violence" will be a film that won't disappoint. It's one film that we will heartily admit made us grimace, wince, and look away with its hyper violence and gore countless times. It's definitely bloody disgusting in every sense of those words. Jay Baruchel provides strong direction being able to make scenes full of tension and anticipation. Where "Random Acts of Violence" suffers most in our opinion was in its narrative development. The film tackles the concept of artistic responsibility - specifically if glorifying a killer through writing and drawings is actually okay or not. If you're familiar with how video games were blamed for violence in real-life around two decades then you'll be familiar with how the film injects the concept. It really had potential to impact audiences deeply but the way it was handled and resolved left us hanging. The biggest issue was its rushed narrative. Once the killing started, it doesn't relent but it also ends the whole experience quite briskly. The film definitely needed more time to fully materialize its themes and concepts especially against its 85 minute running time. We wanted to understand the character of Todd more and find out how his psyche worked but the film just glanced over his real inclinations on his deadly body of work. There were also animated scenes littered throughout the film that just seemed out of place. Overall, "Random Acts of Violence" was a film that made us feel dirty and satisfied all at the same time. It was thrilling and chilling in the right places.
Rating: 3 and a half reels

Why you should watch it:
- the visceral gore had us grimacing and smiling at the same time

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- the story was a bit of a letdown and needed more time to mature
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