The list of cinematic reference points could go on, but it’s not the specificity of these (or others) that matters. Daniel’s achievement is recapturing the hot, sultry mood of these movies in his own haunting and beautiful way. It’s trashy, exasperating, convoluted, over-the-top, violent, and deliberately provocative. But these charged-up qualities give the film its unique power, and Daniels piles them on as if daring his audience to come to grips with, and move beyond, the excess.
December 21, 2012