Film Review: Killer Joe

The Exorcist director William Friedkin has adapted a play from Tracy Letts who also wrote the screenplay for this magical film. First thing that needs to be said is Matthew McConaughey absolutely kills it. He is out of his element here, he has stepped away from the mainstream typecast and come back around to his Frailty persona.

Of course, in Frailty his psycho mannerisms were limited. This whole film he plays psycho with a subtle reluctance until the final act when anything goes. This film deserves its NC-17 rating. The uncommon rating is often appealed by production companies in the vain of doing better at the box office. Friedkin has made a bold and noble move to pride himself in this mpaa scar.

From the beginning of this demented film we meet a lower class Texas family. The son, Chris (Emile Hirsch) is in debt to drug dealers and brings his father, sister and step-mother in on a plan to hire a hitman (Killer Joe) to secretly kill their mother and claim the hefty life insurance policy. Needless to say, in my history of watching movies, plans like this aren’t ever properly carried out.

Emile Hirsch is a fantastic actor, especially in Into the Wild and Oscar-nominated Thomas Haden Church is in this as well who is incredible in Sideways. So it’s amazing how an actor often put-down for the D-grade mainstream comedies he is in owns the film. As far as the story, and the mood of the film it is good. Normally I’d say with a plot like this the film wouldn’t be memorable at all but it’s the twisted sense of humor and the no-holds-bar violence and sex that give it it’s own originality.

I probably won’t ever personally own this film, but I will suggest it to many people and might try and watch it with some of the people just to see their reactions to the final act.

Final Score: 3.5/5