Directed by: Shane Ryan, Jason Ewert, Luc Bernier, Dustin Ferguson, Aaron Stielstra
Written by: Tom Jolliffe, Dean Houlihan, Matti Soikkeli, Jason Ewert
Starring: Clint Eastwood, Sarah Dyas, Tom Jolliffe, Chris Gabroy, Mitch Groethe
Every now and then a motion picture arrives that is quite different. Awesomely Righteous and Radical is exactly that. It basically consists of several short stories with elements of science-fiction, horror, comedy, thriller and action. To give a few examples, one story involves a man and a few teenagers sitting around a campfire, and he tells them a story about a monster that lives in the woods. Another is about a virus outbreak that has brought humanity to the brink of extinction and a girl struggles to survive in a harsh, post-apocalyptic world. Another involves a woman who finds a wallet and is threatened by the owner. Then there is one about an unlikable man, who has an awkward therapy session and later comically takes drugs in a forest. Then in another a man takes revenge on the thugs who assaulted his wife. It would be fair to say that this film is made out of short films. And each of these films has its own cast and crew, who bring their own creativity to the project, making each story unique.
Overall the performances give the impression that they could had been better and the camerawork can appear awkward at times. However this is not necessarily a negative thing, because this is not a feature that intends to take itself seriously. It appears to be paying homage to B-Movies. By having wacky performances, the picture becomes humorous and the unusual camerawork can be entertaining. All the stories are interesting and there is never a dull moment. There are scenes of action and gore and the soundtrack is great. There is even an awesome martial arts sequence that is directed and edited to great effect.
As mentioned, this film pays tribute to B-Movies. To be more specific, that would be B-Movies of the eighties, judging by the elements seen in the film. The quality of the film gives the impression that it was filmed during that time. The film often appears scratched and damaged and the music heard thoughout seems to be from that period. And the narratives appear to are set in the eighties, due to the characters' clothing and the equipment they use, such as phones and video cassettes. The beginning even includes an advertisement that was filmed around that time, in which acclaimed actor and filmmaker Clint Eastwood warns people about the dangers of cocaine. Near the end, there is also a trailer of the 1991 B-Movie Samurai Cop, hinting that the short films are indeed honoring the B-Movies of that era. Another interesting feature is that before each story begins, the screen shows the icon: STOP/PLAY while the sound of a cassette entering a video cassette player is heard. Generally the film has 'eighties' written all over it. The experience of watching it is kind of like entering a time machine and going back to the eighties.
Awesomely Righteous and Radical will most likely provide satisfaction to fans of B-Movies and beyond. A number of directors and actors came together and created a very interesting piece of work. It provides the audience with an entertaining experience, one that is likely to stay with them for a long time.