My thoughts on the riotously funny, beautiful insanity that is Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire.
“It’s too late… I’ve been insulted!”
A masterclass in escalation. Bullets fly. Egos fall. Lunacy reigns. This is the “proper fucking shootout” Tom Hardy #2 demanded in Legend. It’s Ben Wheatley’s Reservoir Dogs – boasting just as much tension, intrigue and fast-talking enigmatic ‘villains’, with an added dose of absurd black comedy. Wheatley’s penchant for stylistic anarchy is put to excellent use, as he crafts one of the most captivating, unpredictable and downright entertaining action sequences you’ll ever see on the big screen. And here’s the kicker: it’s a seventy minute marathon of madness.
It must grow tiresome after a while, I hear you cry. Not this gimmick! Every time you start to wonder how long Wheatley & Jump can keep this up, another item or player enters the fray – and the table is thrown once more into total disarray. The ensemble is so perfectly balanced: each star brings their own unique brand of chaos to the battlefield, yet they all come together in perfect harmony. Highlights? Cillian Murphy’s cool customer and Jack Reynor’s hot-headed wretch. Armie Hammer’s suitably suave negotiator and Sam Riley’s doped-up provocateur. Brie Larson’s not-nice girl, constantly mocking Sharlto Copley’s wanton sexual advances – and of course, Copley himself: a most deliciously entertaining piece of shit. You’ll love to hate him. Watch and Verne.
Had this been a packed screening, it would have rivalled Get Out for the most entertaining cinema experience I’ve had this year. As it was, there were only about twelve of us – but we all laughed incredulously throughout anyway. Side-note: please don’t let this flop America. It’s all on you now.