Written by Kenny Fischer
I don't even know where to start. I've loved the few Bret Easton Ellis books I've read. And as far as the movies are concerned, I love RULES OF ATTRACTION. I love AMERICAN PSYCHO. I sort of dig LESS THAN ZERO. But THE INFORMERS...
I enjoyed the first few minutes before any dialogue kicked in. It was stylish, extremely atmospheric, and I loved the music. I was ready to go along for the ride. Hell, my expectations were very low. But that didn't matter. This is an astonishingly awful movie. It's terrible. It's so so so so terrible. A few of the performances work, but the rest are godawful and every character is reprehensible.
I loved all the characters in RULES OF ATTRACTION. Some of them were total shits, but they were charming, engaging, and little bits of humanity popped up here and there. Christian Bale played a sadistic killer in AMERICAN PSYCHO, but his performance was funny, over-the-top, and it grabbed you from his first scene. Every single character in this movie is unlikable.
And to make matters worse, no one has an arc. They're the same person they were in the beginning. Because there are so many subplots there's no time for any development whatsoever. It's like a really bad episode of HEROES, without superpowers or anything enjoyable. HEROES sucks for many reasons, but one of the biggest ones is when each episode tackles nine plots lines, you only get a few minutes of story advancement with each of the individual threads.
I guess I should tell you what the movie is about. Billy Bob Thornton isn't sure if he loves his wife. Amber Heard gets naked a lot. Mickey Rourke kidnaps a kid. A rock star does drugs and jailbait (male and female). Um...what else? I forgot already...uh...Lou Taylor Pucci deals with his asshole dad in Hawaii. That's basically everything. You won't learn or discover anything more than I just told you over the course of the running time. And to make matters worse...
All the threads in this movie suck. It feels like either scenes were cut out of the film or the script never made any sense to begin with. What's even worse is you could cut out any of the subplots in their entirety and you'd never know anything was missing. The narrative isn't a house of cards. It's a house of bullshit. I didn't realize until afterwards that this movie is an adaptation of a collection of short stories and they combined them all into one big story.
That made a lot of sense in hindsight. The ridiculous, contrived, and convoluted way they attempted to connect all the characters and threads are unbelievably stupid. The scene with Brad Renfro and Jon Foster in the lobby of their building is so so so so so pointless, except to have Renfro interact with another character from the movie. Thanks, movie! You're wasting my time again!
This is also one of those movies that proves William Goldman right. Nobody knows anything. I didn't realize until after I watched it that vampires were in the original book. There are none to be found in this movie. Of all the things to excise from the original book... Vampires are so hot right now. They're hot as a firecracker. That would have almost made the movie interesting. It would also make Mickey Rourke's entire subplot somewhat interesting or at least understandable.
To clarify, I'm not knocking Mickey here and I'll never knock him. The sheer horribleness of this movie is not his fault. The worst part is that it's just boring as hell. Only two scenes are of the laughably awful variety. The rest is mind-numbingly tedious. If I had seen this in a regular theater I would have walked out halfway through. You realize fairly quickly that the movie is going nowhere slowly.
I'm done talking about this movie. It's the worst thing I've ever seen at Sundance. Stay far, far away from it.