*sigh* What was I thinking? Did I not see the tell-tale “A film by Uwe Boll
” on the cover of this DVD? For those who don’t know, Boll
has achieved infamy for being one of the worst and laziest filmmakers out there, having made clunker video game adaptations for most of his career that make even “Tomb Raider”
look good. Genre entries like “Alone in the Dark”
and “House of the Dead”
the target du jour
of fan boy wrath. I suppose when I saw his film “Rampage”
at Fantastic Fest
last year and it wasn’t awful, I was suffused with hope for the man. Consider me no longer suffused as “Stoic”
is just Boll
being shocking and trying to pretend it’s important or artistic some how.
According to the film, this is based on a true story, but I’d add a big grain of salt to that since it’s coming from Boll
and ‘true story’
doesn’t mean what it once did in Hollywood terms. Simply, three inmates in a shared cell rape, torture and eventually fake a suicide to murder a fourth cellmate. The story is told alternating between filmed interviews with the surviving inmates and of the events themselves as a puffy Edward Furlong
and his two buddies turn on their roommate like animals.
Only a pathological bully could enjoy this mess. It’s ugly in concept and execution. Even the editing is sloppy. The dialogue was all improvised so at least it seems more or less natural, which is part of the only thing I can’t criticize too much: the performances. Although Furlong
seems out of place here as head sociopath (but then, Boll
’s casting practices have nothing to do with who is right for any given role, self-admittedly), generally speaking everyone performs up to snuff, especially the relatively unknown Sam Levinson
as the regretful inmate who deserves a chance at better material than this.
Unless you like loving and seemingly endless shots of a man being forced to eat his own vomit, amongst other even worse things, and then being told at the end that it’s all an object lesson about how jail makes even small time criminals into monsters (seriously, how does Boll
sleep at night), then you want to absolutely SKIP “Stoic”
. I wish I had. CLICK HERE TO BUY Stoic BUT ONLY IF YOU HATE YOURSELF