Dashcam – Movie news | Film-News.co.uk

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The virtually exclusive fuss on Twitter about whether a major movie chain had “banned” Dashcam because it was rude or for commercial reasons, probably didn’t hurt him. Although on closer inspection, a 77-minute small-scale film that will go digital a few days after its release suggests it had more to do with the latter.

The film has been around since the 2021 London Film Festival, and with word of mouth being generally positive, it probably didn’t need a veneer of notoriety to give it a boost. So, after all this peripheral nonsense, what about the film itself?

Annie Hardy (Annie Hardy herself prolific on social media) is a social media star with legions of followers, all too happy to provide fuel or bile through her comments and emoji stream. Her popularity stems primarily from her outspoken commentary and opinions as she drives around Los Angeles, tackling the city’s eccentricities for her show.

The Covid lockdown, however, deprived her of her usual gear while providing her with other things, like tearing up anything that suggests civil liberties are being eroded, for example masks and lockdowns.

Leaving LA for London, she finds it’s much the same when she visits her friend Stretch (Amar Chadha-Patel) and his rule-following partner, giving Annie enough ammunition to nurture their online audience. In all of this, Stretch still has a job to do as a delivery driver, and where Annie is taking a toll. On a job after Annie nicked Stretch’s car, they end up with a very strange passenger, and it all goes to hell.

On the one hand, it could be seen as a crude satire of the worst of the American right and the MAGA movement. And there’s nothing subtle about it as Annie throws her verbal bombs indiscriminately. On the other, it could be director Rob Savage and co-writers Gemma Hurtley and Jed Shepherd (The Team Behind the Exceptional Host) just letting loose and unloading every rancid idea that came to mind. There are torrents of blood mixed with vomit and bodily functions, as well as broken limbs and flying demons.

Technically filmed entirely on mobile from the perspective of the protagonists, it is very impressive with a terrific sound design that pulls the viewer into the action. And sometimes it is very funny, having a good visual and verbal success rate. It’s perhaps too frantic at times with the camera thrown all over the place, though Savage rules to let the viewer see things the protagonists can’t. But overall, it’s after pub fare and you can basically ignore the plot and technicalities and just roll over its putrid stream.

Dashcam made me think of early Peter Jackson films and their excesses, notably Braindead and Meet the Feebles. Then he moved on. This is Rob Savage’s first film for Blumhouse and it feels like an indulgence and a purge. It’s childish and juvenile in equal parts in the worst possible taste, but it will be very interesting to see what comes next.

Dashcam is in theaters for a limited time and on digital starting June 6.

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