Natural Born Killers 4k review by Bobby Blakey
Director Oliver Stone has an impressive filmography with films like Platoon, Wall Street, and Born on the Fourth of July. In 1994 he took on a different type of film with Natural Born Killers from a screenplay by Quentin Tarantino that as reportedly retooled by Stone and others and features a great cast including Woody Harrelson, Juliette Lewis, Robert Downey Jr., Tom Sizemore, Tommy Lee Jones and Rodney Dangerfield. Now Shout Factory is bringing the film to 4K through its Shout Select brand for the first time.
Natural Born Killers follows Mickey Knox and Mallory Wilson who aren't your typical lovers. After killing her abusive father, they go on a road trip where, every time they stop somewhere, they kill pretty well everyone around them. They do however leave one person alive at every shootout to tell the story and they soon become a media sensation thanks to sensationalized reporting.
While I am aware this film is an acquired taste it is one of my all time favorite films. I have loved this film since I saw it in the theater for the first time in 1994 and have had it on regular watching rotation ever since. There are so many layers to this film that I think some just don’t understand and just see the insanity and chaos of it all. If you see it only on the surface I can see how the film doesn’t connect, but there is so much more here.
First thing that always stood out to me was Harrelson’s turd as Mickey here which was way out of character than anything he had done before at the time. The pairing alongside Lweis is perfection and they are great to watch together and one of the reasons this film works as well as it does. The rest of the cast are outstanding as well especially a pre-Iron Man Robert Downey Jr. who had come off his praise in his brilliant performance Chaplin. He steals every scene he is in as a Geraldo Rivera like TV host/reporter.
The other over the top and unlikely role is that of comedy legend Rodney Dangerfield who only has a small role, but is dirty, creepy and all around cringe worthy in the best way possible. It is a bizarre sequence that works more than anything thanks to his insane performance that is easily the best he ever did in my opinion.
The film is seemingly all over the place, but there is a clear formula here and if you really invest in what is being said it delivers. The story is more than just two crazed people committing murders, but a social commentary on the glorification of these kinds of people by both the media and the public. It sifts between real life to a psychedelic like world and even a deranged sitcom that will leave you feeling like you need shower. The social commentaries are all too real and still relevant today all wrapped up in a road trip of chaos, sex, murder and debauchery that you cannot help love just as much as the themes its exposing.
I still love this film and think it is highly underrated. This new 4K release looks great and not only serves up a clean new visual version of the gritty tale but will hopefully give the film new life with fresh audiences as well as us longtime fans.
This new release offers up both old and new bonus features including interviews, commentaries, deleted scenes, alternate ending and featurettes as well as both the theatrical and director’s cut of the film. Grab your copy of Natural Born Killers available now on Collector’s Edition 4K from Shout Studios!.
For more information or to get your copy head over to https://shoutfactory.com/collections/new-upcoming-releases-1/products/natural-born-killers-collectors-edition