Mandy (2018) - Panos Cosmatos

82/100

Hardcore violence and psychedelia are a recipe for some ultra-trippy horror!

Director: Panos Cosmatos

Producers: Daniel Noah, Josh C. Waller, Elijah Wood, Adrian Politowski, Martin Metz and Nate Bolotin

Writers: Panos Cosmatos and Aaron Stewart-Ahn

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Andrea Riseborough, Linus Roache, Ned Dennehy, Olwen Fouéré, Richard Brake and Bill Duke

Studios: SpectreVision, Umedia, Legion M and XYZ Films

Release Date: January 19, 2018 (Sundance)

Country: Canada/USA

Box Office: $1.3 million\

Soundtrack:

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Mandy is a Canadian experimental horror/action film from writer/director, Panos Cosmatos. Starring Nicholas Cage, Andrea Riseborough, Linus Roache, Ned Dennehy, and Olwen Fouéré. The film was produced independently by SpectreVision and XYZ Films, and it had made its debut at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival on January 19, 2018. The actual film has a retro style that is achieved through creative lighting, camera work, and filmmaking. A gorgeous picture that tells one hell of a story.

Red and Mandy Miller (Nicholas Cage and Andrea Riseborough) are deeply in love. They live a secluded life out deep in the woods. Their happy life together is snuffed out one day when a sadistic cult leader (Linus Roache) sees her. She is killed. Red’s life is thrown into despair. Turning to insane amounts of vodka, cocaine, and LSD, Red goes on a revenge killing spree that takes him right down into the deepest depths of hell.

This movie is definitely a win for Nicholas Cage. A standout performance during, what I hope, is an upswing in his career. He really does a number in this one. His breakdown scene is fantastic. Just watch that scene and witness that man travel through emotions. But, Andrea Riseborough knocked it out of the park. I thought she was fantastic as Mandy. We get Linus Roache in a truly sinister role as Jeremiah Sand. His character is so disturbing and creepy, it made me uncomfortable. I appreciated the appearance by Predator actor, Bill Duke.

The effects are bizarre. Trippy. It’s so colorful. Odd editing techniques and disturbing imagery create this chaos that puts the viewer on the edge of their seat. The editing alone is enough to give someone anxiety. There are a few animated sequences that looked so fucking cool. I am in love with this Art Department. I don’t ever do this, but these guys (Pascal Degrune, Bart Deprins, Ruben Hermans, John Lambrechts, Rob McCallum and Adriaan Struelens) did a bang-up job. The demon biker gang had this weird cenobite thing going on. I liked that too.

Mandy is badass. Nicholas Cage fighting his way through demonic cultists and bikers, is definitely what I wanted when I laid eyes on the movie poster. He is an interesting mix of John Wick and Ash from Evil Dead. If you are a Nicholas Cage fan, then this is a must see. The imagery and effects cannot be missed. This is definitely one of the most adventurous movies I have seen in a good while.