review by Bobby Blakey
I love quirky dark comedies but sadly most of them fail to really pull off anything memorable or fun to watch. The latest, Arizona features a great cast including Rosemarie DeWitt, Danny McBride, Luke Wilson, Elizabeth Gillies, Kaitlin Olson, and David Alan Grier, but does it have anything that helps it raise the property value or will it be a project not worth financing?
Arizona follows Cassie, a real estate agent and single mom struggling to keep it all together. Things go from bad to worse when a disgruntled client, Sonny, confronts Cassie’s boss and accidentally kills him. Having witnessed the crime, Sonny kidnaps Cassie to keep her quiet until he figures out what to do. But he makes one outrageously bad – and bloody – decision after another, until things completely spiral out of control. I knew nothing about this film going in and honestly didn’t have all that much interested outside of McBride’s involvement, but I was afraid it was going to be another of those quick cameos type of things. Thankfully I was so wrong because not only is McBride in the whole film he gets to cut lose with the crazy like only he can.
The story here is simple, but intriguing as it shifts into full insanity. The first encounter that he has that sets thing in motion offers up a great cameo and immediately tells you things are going to get pretty dark. Rosemarie DeWitt does a great job bouncing off of him as things get darker and darker between the pair. The setting of this ditched housing community makes for the perfect backdrop of this bloody game of cat and mouse for laughs and craziness all while speaking volumes of the real estate market crashes in the early 2000s. If there is any issues for me it comes more in the wasted talent of the rest of the cast most notably Wilson and Grier. They essentially have smaller walk on roles and bring nothing overly big to the story and in turn feel almost useless.
This film isn’t offering a whole lot new to the dark comedy genre, but thanks to the two leads it is elevated to being something a lot more than it might have been otherwise. If you like any of the cast or just a dark and often violent comedy then give this one a shot when it hits 4K Ultra, Blu-ray and DVD on October 16th from RLJE Films.