Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Movie Review: "Excision" (2012)

Director: Richard Bates Jr.
Year: 2012
Rating: NR
Running Time: 1 hour, 21 minutes

An unstable teen who aspires to be a surgeon falls deeper and deeper into self-delusion.

Excision 2012 horror movie still AnnaLynne McCord
"Dear God, one thing I've been thinking about. The whole thing about relatives watching over you after they die really rubs me the wrong way. I do a lot of crazy shit while I'm along and I'd appreciate some privacy." (Image Source)
If you want all of the rewards life has to offer, you have to be willing to put in the work. "Excision" is the feature film debut of writer/director Richard Bates Jr., who would go on to direct other movies like "Suburban Gothic" and "Trash Fire." Pauline (AnnaLynne McCord) is not your average high school student. She is mentally unstable and has delusions of grandeur, which probably stem from her treatment by an overbearing, staunchly religious mother (Traci Lords). Pauline has aspirations of being a surgeon. She often dreams and fantasizes about surgery and dissection where she is beautiful, seductive, and brilliant rather than her much more plain Jane life as a less than mediocre student and social outcast where she has psychopathic tendencies. When her fantasies start to take over her reality, it may have disastrous results.
Excision 2012 horror movie still AnnaLynne McCord
"Can you contract an STD from having sex with a dead person?" (Image Source)
"Excision" is part surrealist horror, part dysfunctional family drama. It is much more bizarre and unsettling than it is scary. The horrific elements come in the form of Pauline's dreams and fantasy sequences where her ideal self is regularly shown performing weird surgical acts that blur the lines into sexual gratification. Pauline shows many psychotic inclinations and is creepily aroused by the blood and guts of her surgical delusions. These elements blend into her everyday life where she has hallucinations of her abilities as she daydreams about what she might be able to be without actually putting in the work to achieve her goals. As director Richard Bates Jr. has said, it is his indictment of the 'entitlement attitude' so many people display today. Everybody seems to want it all, but they don't want to struggle for it. That is Pauline in a nutshell, and actress AnnaLynne McCord plays out this notion tremendously. What a creepy and compelling performance!
Excision 2012 horror movie still AnnaLynne McCord
"What do you think boys see in all these overly made-up cum dumpsters?" (Image Source)
We often sat with our mouths agape while watching the strange and disturbing things happening on screen during "Excision." We were often left us in disgust, and in that sense, it has wicked efficacy as a horror film. It was an engaging enough watch but isn't one we would revisit on the regular because of how screwed up it is. There are a couple of very controversial scenes not for the faint of heart that may leave unseasoned horror movie viewers vomiting their guts out.

My Rating: 7/10
BigJ's Rating: 7/10
IMDB's Rating: 6.1/10
RT Rating: 82%
Do we recommend this movie: Sure, why not?

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