As all of you probably know by now, we recently suffered a great loss. Actor Bill Paxton unfortunately passed away at the age of 61 due to complications following surgery. I can’t possibly know what his family is going through right now, and I give my most sincere condolences to them. Not only is this a great loss for his family, but also for the entire movie/TV industry. Paxton was never one of those actors that really sold thousands of movie tickets, but he always gave it his all. He is one of those actors that always brought a smile to my face. Even when he played a bit of a dick (See: “Nightcrawler” or “True Lies”), I liked him. And it’s not really until the news of his death reached me that I realized how much I loved him as an actor. Deaths of good actors/musicians/authors/entertainers always suck, but this is one that actually hurt. So in honor of this great man, I have chosen to review a movie of his that I hadn’t seen yet.
Ladies and gentlemen… “Frailty”.
One dark and stormy night (I shit you not), FBI agent Wesley Doyle (Powers Boothe) finds a man (Matthew McConaughey) in his office who wants to talk to him. The man tells the story of his father (Bill Paxton, R.I.P) who apparently got visions from god, compelling him to hunt down people who were “demons” and to then destroy them. And through most of the movie we see a flashback to the time when the man was young and experienced his dad doing these things. And I’m not gonna lie, I thought it was a really solid plot. Through most of the movie I sat there wondering if the guy actually got told by god to do these horrible things or if he was just a fucking loon. And I loved how it managed to keep it like that throughout. There was also a lot of good suspense to the plot too, which made it even better. Yeah, this movie has a creepy/disturbing plot that is pretty great.
The characters in this movie are all pretty interesting. Bill Paxton knocks it out of the park as the dad. His performance got layers to it. You can tell that his character isn’t just making up bullshit excuses so he can kill people, the man really believes that he’s doing the right things. Gives layers to the character. McConaughey is alright, alright, alright in this… admit it, that joke was funny. But seriously, he does a good job here. Matt O’Leary and Jeremy Sumpter plays Paxton’s two kids in this movie, and they are really good in the movie. And Powers Boothe is of course pretty great too. Yeah, the acting here is really good.
The score for the movie was composed by Brian Tyler and it was really good. Sure, it never does anything particularly original, his score does take cues from a lot of horro/thriller scores (not jumpscare cues, mind you!), but it overall sounds really good. It’s ominous, it’s creepy, and it fits the movie perfectly.
This movie was the directorial debut of Bill Paxton, and I got to say that I’m really impressed. His directing here is slow and very tense, which makes for some pretty great scenes. The movie also looks really good. I wouldn’t say that it’s one of those “Wow, this is gorgeous” movies, but it does look good.
This movie has been well received. On Rotten Tomatoes it has a 73% positive rating and a “Fresh” certification. On Metacritic it has a score of 64/100. Roger Ebert gave the movie 4/4 stars. And on imdb.com it has a score of 7,3/10.
“Frailty” is a surprisingly great horror/thriller. It has a really good plot, good characters, great performances, really good music, and great directing. Time for my final score. *Clears throat*. My final score for “Frailty” is a 9,80/10. So it gets the “SEAL OF APPROVAL!”.
My review of “Frailty” is now completed.
Rest in peace Bill Paxton… you will be sorely missed.