The violent energy and the inventive DIY style that Glodell brings to a blood-and-guts story of broken hearts is fresh. It says something of the stretching immaturity of men that they dream of a world coming out from 1970s cinema. A movie uneven by a faulted structure and a false sensation of doom constructed at the start. Still, within its universe, an exciting attempt to review mumblecore by blowing up its rules.
I stopped watching the film at 20mins mark, then I gave it another go the other day, and... I wish I could say I'm glad I did so. The characters are unlikable, they all tell similar things - mostly mixture of nonsense and swearing, simply they are "bros". It gets slightly dark towards the end, but never venturing further than a teenage love drama. The visual style works in some parts, nice cars. That's all, I think.
It has its many weaknesses but nevertheless great movie, it works as such very well: exploring narrative and cinematic possibilities along the way, interesting and sometimes inspiring camera work, great editing, beautiful color grading. I did not give 5 stars because I’m tired of guns in movies.
It's largely juvenile nonsense, of course, but it's more compelling film making than most "serious" or "important" mainstream American cinema. The first half is effortlessly enjoyable, but as the film goes on the characters and their action make less and less sense. The poignant commentary on American masculinity at the end saves the film from being a failure. An interesting failure nonetheless.
An imperfect movie, but an interesting one, about two guys in their 20s who haven't stopped being adolescents yet. They're trying to figure out how to do that, or whether they even want to. They're scary, infuriating characters, but you feel for them too. Sorting out the fantasy from the reality keeps the movie interesting. Shows Southern California the way it really looks as people who live there would know it.