TIFF 2016: ‘The Bad Batch’ Is Mad Max For The Vice Crowd
Who’s Behind It
Who’s In It
Who’ll Love It
Fans of genre films who think they’ve seen it all, anyone who always wanted to see Khal Drogo with a little less eyeliner, and cannibals.
What’s It About
In a post-apocalyptic America (which could be coming to a border near you as early as this October), an outcast is cast out among fellow rejects somewhere along the divide between Texas and Mexico. In this no-man’s/no-woman’s/no laws land, it’s be smart or be eaten. With a penchant for smiley face cutoffs and bad tattoos, Arlen (Waterhouse) doesn’t let her her recently amputated (and spit-roasted) arm and leg slow her down. She may be a dreamer in a dystopian time, but she’s also a survivor. After one ingenious escape, she makes her way to a relatively safer enclave, but safety doesn’t equal satisfaction. Watching Arlen blindly navigate the world Amirpour has created for her is genuinely fun, even if it drags on a touch too long.
Why You Should See It
The Bad Batch is genre-twisting, concept-flipping moviemaking at its next-to-best (we’d still call Girl Amirpour’s finest work). In an industry where directors are remaking remakes, this movie stands out as an original—even if the Vice vibe (the media empire had a hand in producing the movie) is at times a bit oppressive. The movie’s aesthetic is very different from Girl, but Amirpour’s style and quirky storytelling still shine through.
When You Can See It
September 13, 9:00pm, Ryerson; September 14, 3:15pm, Bloor Hot Docs Cinema; September 18, 8:45pm, Bloor Hot Docs Cinema. The film has no official release date yet, but you can sample a couple clips below.