Actors: William Devane, Mark Pellegrino, Logan Huffman, Jeremy Allen White
Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Widescreen, NTSC
Subtitles: English, Spanish
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Number of discs: 1
Rated: NR (Not Rated)
Studio: Starz / Anchor Bay
DVD Release Date: January 13, 2015
Run Time: 92 minutes
Bad Turn Worse is one of those independent films defying Aristotle by having the whole somehow less than the sum of its parts. The overall movie is rather pedestrian, but broken down in all of its elements there are many obvious rising talents scattered within the production. Rather than being a perfect film, Bad Turn Worse seems an indicator of better films to come from these filmmakers.
With similar locale-specific scenic photography and naturalistic performances as early David Gordon Green and Jeff Nichol’s films thus far, Bad Turn Worse has a plot that seems reminiscent of the Coen’s debut. It almost seems as though Zeke and Simon Hawkins studied successful debut features from their favorite directors in creating this film. It is even being promoted as their “directorial debut,” though it is actually only the first film that they have directed a film together. Though there are admirable elements to the execution, it feels light on plot beyond the basic premise and predictable pre-determined twists and double-crosses in the final sequence.
The simple storyline involves three Texan teens (Jeremy Allen White, Logan Huffman and Mackenzie Davis), two of which inadvertently become accomplices to spending money stolen by the third. They have a weekend burning through the stolen money, until the criminal it was taken from discovers their involvement. In order to pay off their debt, Giff (Mark Pellegrino) forces the three teens to carry out a heist against a money-laundering gangster, Big Red (William Devane), who also happens to be Giff’s boss. This goes predictably awry, though it provides plenty of opportunities to showcase the Hawkins’ talents and for Pellegrino to chew the scenery in a committed performance as the film’s main sociopath.
Entertainment Value: 7/10
Quality of Filmmaking: 7/10
Historical Significance: 3/10
Special Features: 0/10