Cert: 18 Runtime: 118 mins Director: Ana Lily Amirpour Cast: Suki Waterhouse, Jason Mamoa, Jayda Fink, Keanu Reeves, Diego Luna, Giovanni Ribisi and Jim Carrey
To life… life is The Dream. The only Dream. Cost lot to be here. Cost you an arm and a leg.
Ana Lily Amirpour won a fan with A Girl Walk Home Alone at Night in 2015, a real breath of fresh air t cinema. The Bad Batch is her latest film it has received mixed review, along with a Special Jury Prize at Venice Film Festival 2016. The Bad Batch has provided Amirpour with a stellar cast and a dystopian universe on top of that had me game. So what is The Bad Batch about? Arlen (Suki Waterhouse) is abandoned in a Texas wasteland that is fenced off from civilization. While trying to navigate the unforgiving landscape, Arlen is captured by a savage band of cannibals led by the mysterious Miami Man (Jason Mamoa). With her life on the line, she makes her way to The Dream (Keanu Reeves). As she adjusts to life in the bad batch, Arlen discovers that being good or bad mostly depends on who’s standing next to you.
The Bad Batch is an examination of the nature of morality and moral choices. There’s a scene where you will askyourself whether the act you have just seen was justified, indefensible, or some indescribable mixture of the two, even as you watch Suki Waterhouse ask herself the same question — what have I just done, and was it good or bad? The pace is measured, even contemplative, and the camera lingers on the actors’ faces. It is, above all, tremendously thought-provoking. The movie defies another convention: it never bothers to explain what seem to be unlikely elements of the portrayed world. However, Amirpour says she did extensive world-building and even devised complete back stories for every character. Her strategy is to keep viewers as uninformed as the characters themselves. The Bad Batch is an exemplary addition to the small but growing group of art-house science fiction films. It more than fulfils the promise of Amirpour’s art-house debut.