Frailty

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(2001) ★★★★★

Watch: Friday 30 October, 10.00pm

“You haven’t even heard me out yet and you doubt me,” Matthew McConaughey tells FBI agent Powers Boothe, the man in charge of the God’s Hand case. McConaughey says he knows who the killer is: “Sometimes the truth defies reason.” It started in the summer of 79, when Texan widower Bill Paxton wakes his two young sons in the middle of the night to tell them the End is Nigh: “Demons are taking over the world.”

God’s pre-ordained purpose for them is to hunt down and kill these demons disguised in human form. “We don’t fear these demons. We destroy them.” The younger brother buys into it. The older boy sees his father’s insanity. It’s sad and terrifying. John Carpenter’s The Thing insisted you couldn’t trust those closest to you. Frailty goes one step further – your own dad might be the monster.

It’s a notable directorial debut for actor Paxton, who made his name in Aliens and Near Dark. Cannily, Paxton keeps it plain and simple, which makes the shattering story all the more creepy. It lingers long in the mind like a disturbing dream, especially since writer Brent Hanley flips the story inside-out at the end, providing the grimmest of blackly comic punchlines. Hanley scripted Family for the Masters of Horror cable TV series.

Directed by John Landis in 2006, it’s another peculiar view of insanity from a Psycho perspective. Sam Raimi directed Paxton in A Simple Plan and he called Frailty “the most disturbing horror picture I’ve seen since The Shining.” After inflicting the Evil Dead movies and Drag Me to Hell on the world, it’s safe to say Raimi knows a thing or two about scary.

Certificate: 15
Duration: 100min

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Other Showings Date & Time
Watch Thursday, 5 November at 10:00PM