The Bad Batch (2017)

It’s like if Nicolas Winding Refn made his own version of Mad Max: Fury Road…

 Arlen (Suki Waterhouse) is one of the thousands of Americans deemed unacceptable to society and is unceremoniously dumped into a hostile desert wasteland fenced off from civilized society. Wandering the desert in exile, she is captured by a savage band of cannibals and quickly realizes she’ll have to fight for her very existence in this human eat human world.

Following up from the fantastic debut ‘A Girl Walks Home Along At Night’ Ana Lily Amirpour’s sophomore film ‘The Bad Batch’ is a visually stylish, sun scorched post apocalyptic horror meets romance. Slow burner, yes, but Amirpour demonstrates her knack of director/writer combo ability with her illustrious talent of world building.

The Bad Batch is a tricky one to assess. After falling heads over heels in love with Amirpour’s breathtaking debut, I went into Bad Batch ready to be amazed yet again. Boy, was I ever… The opening scene is fucking brilliant. It is nasty and effortlessly filmed but the rest of the film doesn’t quite live up to its savage opening.

Both Suki Waterhouse and Jason Momoa are fun to watch. The both have an absorbing screen presence, but there just wasn’t enough depth there. Giovanni Ribisi is painfully underused and the majority of time spent with Keanu Reeves are drawn out scenes of pretentious blabbering’s.

The Bad Batch begins with little to no dialogue and it was those early scenes that were the real hook of the film. Would this movie have been better if it remained silent throughout? Absolutely! It could have been a bold entry into the post apocalyptic subgenre, and no doubt one Amirpour could easily pull off.

The Bad Batch has it moments. It’s a stylish nightmarish love story that has an absolute killer of a soundtrack. Striking, yet unfortunately a little dissatisfying. It doesn’t help that in its closing moments I was thinking “No, no, no, nooooo” …. Fuck that ending.

6.5 / 10

“Heres the thing, being good and bad… mostly depends on who you’re standing next to” 

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