The film has a very simple plot, with minimal character development and abbreviated storytelling, all leading up to an extremely over-the-top and gory finale...which is exactly what I expected. I got exactly the movie I paid to see.
The film takes a low-intensity, 'realistic' view of its subject matter, yet stills dabbles in plausibility-skewering, morality-be-damned, violent wish-fulfillment, similar to what some of those old Charles Bronson and Clint Eastwood movies used to catch flack for.
The plot's clever, with nary a dull moment, the characters are lively, distinctive and memorable, and the story's 1978 period setting is beautifully rendered. The direction is quite strong, with the film's tone fluctuating expertly between humor and menace.
How are viewers supposed to remain invested in a movie character’s survival when the character themselves don’t behave as if they are? When their decisions become infuriatingly counterintuitive and reckless?
On the surface, the film's very well made, so I guess it's the story's direction I had problems with.
Despite thin characters and absurdist levels of gory violence, it's a slick, technically superior Action-Thriller which I enjoyed on a purely aesthetic level.
The film's more concerned with depicting a fractured father-son relationship salvaged by the supernatural. This is a troubled-family drama dressed up, albeit rather skimpily, in Horror clothing.