Directed by Adam Mason
Distributed by Indiecan Entertainment
No strangers to bizarre psychological thrillers, director Adam Mason and writer Simon Boyes team up once again to deliver yet another eccentric tale of lunacy—only this time the duo leads viewers down a rabbit hole that will make them laugh as much as they will squirm in the most extreme black comedy of the year.
Junkie quite literally starts off with a bang as the audience is introduced to a groggy Danny (Daniel Louis Rivas), who is rudely awakened by his tattooed brother Nicky (Robert LaSardo), who is getting lucky with a woman in the ramshackle they call a home.
Both avid drug users, Danny decides that morning that he wants to stop using and clean up his act once and for all. However, Nicky has other plans in store and convinces Danny to partake in doing drugs one last time before going into full recovery. Convinced that he won’t do drugs but tired of his sociopathic brother bothering him, Danny is persuaded to call Otto (Tomas Boykin), a local drug dealer, to deliver drugs to a persistent Nicky.
Needless to say, the drug exchange doesn’t go as planned, and it ends up in a violent struggle, leaving Otto dead in their home. Unclear of what to do, Danny panics; yet, Nicky suggests that they shoot Otto’s blood into their veins to get high. This is only the beginning of Danny’s trippy descent into madness as he attempts to cover up the murder and hide the body while also dealing with surprise visits from his ex-girlfriend, his freeloading father (Mason regular Andrew Howard), his new prostitute wife and a zombie Otto rising from the dead. What ensues is a showcase of intense thematic elements that parodies drug addiction in a clever yet hard-hitting way.
Just like his previous efforts, Mason understands his latest entry is again tailored towards small niche market audiences for Junkie is definitely not for everyone. The film is full of shock-worthy moments such as a Russian roulette game with Charles Manson and a very explicit sex scene involving Andrew Howard masturbating with an exposed prosthetic penis. However, if viewers are able to look past its crude nature, they will see a film that skillfully conveys drug addiction and doesn’t need a coherent plot to get its point across.
Surprisingly, Junkie is also well acted across the board. Filmed much like a quirky stage production, each actor is able to nail his or her lines and reach a level of exaggeration without appearing too over the top. However, the standout performance of the bunch comes from veteran actor LaSardo, who is able to steal every scene he is in by expressing Nicky’s vulgar drug-addled point of view in a humorous, albeit poignant fashion.
Obvious comparisons to Fight Club aside, Junkie is definitely one of the most unique and obscene horror comedies seen in the past few years and, whether they like it or not, is guaranteed to send viewers on a drug-infused film experience they will not soon forget.
3 1/2 out of 5
3 1/2 out of 5