Guns Akimbo

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If you really hate the male genitalia then this is the movie for you! Also, trolls. A cautionary tale for the online trolling. That’s what Miles would tell you. In Guns Akimbo, Daniel Radcliffe plays a wimpy game developer who likes dabbling in online trolling. But one day, he trolled the wrong… Troll.

And that’s where Miles begins his ‘adventure’. When the uber Troll finds him and surgically attaches a pistol to both his hands and informs him he’s being hunted by a killer! He’s going to live stream it to the web and all the weirdos of the world are going to log in and watch an experienced murderess called Nix (Samara Weaving) end his pointless and unproductive existence. Any time I see a movie try to incorporate any type of online or internet gimmickry, it immediately comes off as dated.  

As far as characters and story goes, it’s nothing revolutionary. There is no time where you think, “Wow. I didn’t see that coming.” In fact, you’re not doing a lot of thinking throughout Guns Akimbo as the ultra-violence has a real numbing quality to it. And that’s what I was referring to in that first sentence. This movie has a real preoccupation with the destruction of the male sex organ. It’s through the whole movie!

I’m not sure if Jason Lei Howden was trying for some ‘Woke’ record or if there is an Award he believes he can win but, it’s odd. I was beginning to wonder who this movie is made for?! But the answer was given by a group of munters on the other side of the theatre. They found the whole thing hysterical. Around me I saw my own stony expression reflected back, but over there every attempted joke landed, every testicule that popped just fueled the furnace of hilarity with additional ‘Oooooo’s’ at the front end of the boisterous mirth.

Did they spoil it? Did they taint my experience? No, they just answered what I thought was an unanswerable question. And they didn’t ruin the bits I enjoyed: The mundane parts where he just tried to accomplish everyday things. You see his hands weren’t just clamped to the guns but every finger – in fact every segment of every finger was, somehow, stapled to the weapons. So putting on pants, opening doors, working a phone, became almost impossible. It made me wish he could turn the safeties on especially when he went to the toilet.

Pain and damage weren’t taken very seriously in Guns Akimbo. As the surgery on the hands would leave him in such pain he wouldn’t be able to think let alone problem solve and have ‘witty’ dialogue. Just like effectively ignoring someone destroying the side of your face with a hammer is not a thing. But by the time of that boss battle, you’re thankfully numb to rational thought anyway, so no biggie I guess.

I rate Daniel as an actor, but this was beneath him. Guns Akimbo felt like a really expensive 40-hour film festival movie. It left me feeling confused at myself because I thought I liked movies like this. I’m a big fan of Peter Jackson’s early work. I used to binge watch B-Grade horrors with my friends. But something was off on the tone of this. The others were light but this one is heavier, dirtier. I don’t want to feel this way watching a movie, I want to have fun, I want to be entertained! Have I changed? Or have the movies changed? Maybe we both have.



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