My Rating: 4.5/5 STARS
MovieStudio Quote >> “Well made, true life story! Thrilling and spontaneous!”
Best known for his horror classics RE-ANIMATOR (1985), FROM BEYOND (1986), and DOLLS (1987), director Stuart Gordon turned to character-driven thrillers in the early 2000s with KING OF THE ANTS… Best known for his horror classics RE-ANIMATOR (1985), FROM BEYOND (1986), and DOLLS (1987), director Stuart Gordon turned to character-driven thrillers in the early 2000s with KING OF THE ANTS (2003) and EDMOND (2005).
STUCK continues in that vein, exploring humankind’s potential for cruelty toward one another. Inspired by real events, this is a bloody and disturbing revenge film with a pitch-black sense of humor and a handful of fine performances. Tom Bardo (Stephen Rea) is having a bad Friday. He’s out of work and preparing for an interview at the employment agency when he is suddenly evicted from apartment. A computer glitch then causes him to spend the entire day waiting for his interview, then is turned away. With nowhere left to go, he finds himself sleeping on a park bench, only to be rousted by a cop.
Enter Brandi (Mena Suvari), a corn-rowed nursing assistant heading home after a night of partying. Talking on the phone and driving under the influence, Brandi hits Tom, sending him crashing halfway through her windshield. Afraid of the consequences, she chooses to drive home, park the car in her garage, and not tell anyone. But Tom, despite this indignant end to a terrible day, still has some fight left in him. Based on true events that occurred in 2002 in Fort Worth, Texas, STUCK boldly plays on the grim absurdity of the situation. John Strysik’s smart script pokes fun at the macho posturing of thug culture and the sad implications of a society where there are no exceptions to the “no snitching” policy. Suvari gives a wild, fun performance, and Rea’s likable Tom is a prototypical underdog. Funny, painful, and crowd-pleasing, this is truly and proudly a B-movie, and a worthy addition to Gordon’s impressive body of work.