Richard speaks to “CTV News at Six” anchor Andria Case about the Oscar nominations and the best movies and television to watch this weekend including the big screen thriller “The Outfit,” the Disney+ remake of “Cheaper by the Dozen” and the “adult” horror of “X.”
Watch Richard Crouse review three movies in less time than it takes to to button up your shirt! Have a look as he races against the clock to tell you about the well dressed thriller “The Outfit,” the tense college thriller “Master” and the “adult” horror of “X.”
Richard joins CP24 to have a look at new movies coming to VOD, streaming services and theatres. Today we talk about the bespoke thriller “The Outfit,” the erotic thriller “Deep Water,” the wholesome family flick “Cheaper by the Dozen,” and a pair of horror film, “Master” and “X.”
Richard joins host Jim Richards of the NewsTalk 1010 afternoon show The Rush for Booze and Reviews! Today we talk about the the stylish crime drama “The Outfit,” the college horror “Master” and the “adult” scares of “X.” Then, we learn about the most stylish man who ever lived and the drink named after him.
Richard sits in on the CFRA Ottawa morning show with guest host Matt Harris to talk the new movies coming to theatres including the well dressed thriller “The Outfit,” the tense college thriller “Master,” the “adult” horror of “X,” the non-erotic, non-thrilling “Deep Water” and the wholesome “Cheaper by the Dozen.”
Richard joins NewsTalk 1010 host David Cooper on the coast-to-coast-to-coast late night “Showgram” to play the game “Did Richard Crouse Like This?” This week we talk about the bespoke gangster film “The Outfit,” the tense college thriller “Master” and the “adult” horror of “X.”
Nearly fifty years after the original “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” made power tools a staple in grisly horror films, an attempted Netflix reboot upped the gore but missed the mark completely. The scariest thing about that movie is its “rotten” Tomatometer Score of 34%.
There isn’t a chainsaw in sight in “X,” a new horror film, now playing in theatres, but it breathes the same fetid air as Tobe Hooper’s 1974 horror classic.
Set in 1979, the film stars Mia Goth as Maxine, an adult entertainer who believes she is destined for a bigger and better life outside the strip club run by her boyfriend Wayne (Martin Henderson doing a spot- on Matthew McConaughey impression). “I will not accept a life I do not deserve,” she says. Her first step to fame and fortune is “The Farmer’s Daughter,” a low budget porno Wayne hopes could blow up and be as popular as “Debbie Does Dallas.” As the film’s executive producer Wayne hires RJ (Owen Campbell), a film student with delusions of arthouse grandeur, his quiet sound technician girlfriend Lorraine (Jenna Ortega) and porn stars Bobby-Lynne (Brittany Snow) and Jackson Hole (Scott Mescudi).
They pile into a van headed for rural Texas and a remote farm where they will live and shoot their film. “It’s perfect,” gushes RJ as they arrive at the farm a.k.a. Wayne’s ”studio backlot.” “It’s going to have lots of production value.”
But that’s not all it has. There is a creepy old couple who live in the main house. Wayne neglected to tell farmer Howard (Stephen Ure) why they rented the property. “He doesn’t know what we’re doing, and I intend to keep it that way.”
Despite Wayne’s promise of discretion, Howard and wife Pearl soon find out what’s happening on the sheets, under their roof.
Cue the hillybilly horror.
On the surface “X” is another riff on the “Chainsaw” hapless-city-slickers-vs.-evil-country-folk vibe, but it’s not all blood and guts (though the plasma flows). Howard and Pearl fight against their decaying bodies, resentful of the good-looking folks flaunting their youth and skin on their property. They may be God fearing folks, but that doesn’t stop them from acting on their basest desires. Writer, director and editor Ti West weaves in the primal fears of aging and sexual repression plus a dollop of religious fervor that all add depth to the horror.
The rural setting, the eerie quiet and darkness of the location, takes on a sinister feel as West peppers his sequences with the odd jump scare or anxiety inducing overhead shot.
By the time we get to the really gross stuff, West has already established “X’s” slow burn atmosphere, adding layer upon layer of tension and subtext as amuse-bouches for the bursts of violence that come in the third act. West stages some truly unpleasant kill sequences, perfect for slasher fans but may cause uncontrolable shudders in others.
“X” is a throwback to the horror of Tobe Hooper and Wes Craven, but with a sensibility that simultaneously feels like a tribute and an update.
SYNOPSIS: Based on the most successful racing video game franchise ever, Need for Speed is Aaron ‘Breaking Bad’ Paul’s first lead in a feature. He plays Tobey Marshall, a speed-demon mechanic, jailed for a crime he did not commit. Out of the hoosegow with revenge against adversary Dino Brewster (Dominic Cooper) on his mind, he finagles a spot at the De Leon, a high-octane underground race that makes the Cannonball Run look like a Go-Kart sprint. You just know it’s only a matter of time until someone says, “We’ll settle this behind the wheel.” Between him and the race, however, are miles of hard road, bounty hunters and police. Will his dreams of racing and revenge come true? Or will his need for speed go unfulfilled?
Richard: 3 Stars
Steve: 2 Stars
Richard: Steve, remember the Mazda commercials that were on a few years ago? I felt like the kid from those ads was sitting on my shoulder whispering “zoom, zoom” into my ear for the entire running time of The Hot Wheels Movie, er…. Need for Speed. This is a fast paced car race movie that zips along as quickly as you’d hope a movie with the word speed in the title would, but character wise, it’s not quite as fast or furious as you might like. The cars are the stars, while the characters are largely left in the dust. What did you think?
Steve: Yes, the way they’re upstaged by the racing sequences, the term “vehicular manslaughter” could easily apply to the actors. Sure, Aaron Paul showed us he had chops in Breaking Bad but that only makes the choice of playing a gravelly-voiced, vengeance-seeking street car racer all the more curious. After all, as much as Need For Speed tries to design depth in its characters, nobody in the thriller rises above conveniently routine. Or all that interesting.
RC: I liked the race scenes. They feel authentic and by and large done by brave speed demon stunt drivers without the use of CGI. They’re exciting, pedal-to-the-metal sequences that put the audience in the driver’s seat. You have to wonder about glorifying the romance of reckless street racing, but the movie isn’t a commercial for vehicular mayhem. There are some wild rides, but there are also consequences for many of the drivers and their need for speed. I just wish the characters were stronger. It says something when the movie’s most interesting character—the eccentric millionaire The Monarch, played by Michael Keaton—never gets behind the wheel of a car.
SG: He was definitely working the same oddball over-the-top angles as Nicolas Cage. Imogen Poots (That Awkward Moment) was appealing enough as a British assistant of the car’s owner who hitchhikes along with Paul for the nationwide ride. However, I couldn’t help thinking how contrived the entire plot was. Then again, I suppose that shouldn’t be surprising considering the story was culled from a video game—albeit a very successful video game.
RC: Need for Speed isn’t Downton Abbey. It’s a car crazy story where characters take a backseat to the action, but if you know what a Two Lane Grasshopper is, then you’ll probably get a kick out of the driving scenes.
SG: This movie definitely isn’t for graduates of Juilliard’s drama program. Its for high-octane gearheads who want to stuff their faces with over-buttered popcorn and watch innocent bystanders and cops get taken out in the careless (but cunningly choreographed) act of illegal street racing. It does a fine job there but I’m not sure I’ll remember much else about Need for Speed by tomorrow morning.