Natural Born Killers

The glamour and glitz of the medias attention falls onto two unlikely celebrity candidates, Micky and Mallory Knox, in what I believe to be Oliver Stone’s best film. Edgy, violent, funny, abstract, clever, fast paced, sexy, anarchic, groundbreaking, satirical, and superb are only words, but words which will culminate in a review for this movie.Do we know the history? Micky and Mallory first found life from the mind of Quentin Tarantino, originally featuring in True Romance, as a screenplay that Clarence had penned himself in early drafts of the movie. But the film within the film took up too much screen time and the story was scrapped… for a short while at least.Luckily for us, the story wound up in the hands of Oliver Stone, its theme and story nestling nicely to his auturistic, anti capitalistic and anarchic flare and sense of violence. Like his anti-heros, Stone tears up the rule book and journey’s straight through the heart of modern day America. Its experimental use of various medium within the media, short cuts echo the crazy world of Micky and Malory Knox. They are the MTV culture let loose on a country in which everyone is in it for the money, for the fame, and where the law is as untrustworthy as the criminals.The story of our  hell raising couple is told through many forms of media currently chiselling away at the morality of society. The sitcom explains away the heart wrenching story of Mallory’s family life, with Rodney Dangerfield playing brilliantly her over bearing and abusive father. The car chase from hell styled documentary lets us into the phenomenon that the killing spree has induced , personified by ratings crazy Vietnam veteran, anchorman Wayne Gayle, Robert Downey Junior in one of his finest and funniest performances. His greed, like the greed of all commercial T V stations, has helped feed the monster that will eventually devour  even him. There’s a documentary feel to the prison scenes,  and Tommy Lee Jones plays a frantic, paranoid, and agitated prison officer appropriately repugnantly. Like wise for Tom Size More who plays the vulgar, sleazy cop who pursues them.Its finale shows Woody Harrelson, as Micky, imprisoned , and give the biggest live televised interview ever, with a speech that almost justifies murder, definitely jabbing a well deserved finger at the exploitative influence of the media, whilst also highlighting this lust for violence that is sown so deeply into the American dream, its history rooted in blood. But Stone has made some of the most violent films to predate Natural Born Killers, and he acknowledges this by even showing the in famous chainsaw scene from Scar face, which he wrote for Brian DePalma.It has been likened to Bonnie and Clyde, but I believe its influence lays more with Terrence Mallick’s Bad Lands. Which was based on true events. Badlands sees Martin Sheen play almost the same character as Harrelson; love struck, young, naïve,. With his lover, Sissy Spacek, they travel the open country, with scenes in Natural Born Killers heavily mirroring scenes from the former, especially the scene in which Sheen has been arrested and whilst cuffed to the hilt, he plays up to his audience of police security.If you haven’t seen it, where have you been? Don’t go hiding behind a rock any longer. Watch it, buy it, let it confuse you, distress you, shock you but thoroughly entertain you.

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