Monday, 11 October 2010

May (2002)

Here’s some tasty psycho-candy for you to chomp on - Lucky McKee’s May (2002). It's a tragic yet enjoyable fury-tale and is part of Culturine’s Halloween series of scary B-movie cult-classics.

May contains all of the ingredients of a cult-classic. It has a low budget, a cool as a cucumber soundtrack, a great cast and a cerebral, yet seemingly ridiculous plot. It tells the tale of May, a girl with a crazy-lazy eye and a friend count of nil so she takes the advice of her mother and makes one, using the body parts of anyone unfortunate enough to show her attention.

Angela Bettis, in the lead role, does an admirable job of balancing vulnerability, explosive violence, horror and black comedy. It is a truly unique and memorable performance for a film of this genre. She’s up there with Sissy Spacek as far as deranged-revenge-femmes go. In 2002 Bettis was touted as a star in the making after showing such promise here but… I’m sure her time will come.

The supporting cast includes Jeremy Sisto as Adam a potential suitor who becomes less so, after becoming familiar with May’s peculiarities. The typically hilarious Anna Farris plays lipstick lesbian workmate Polly and James Duval stars as Blank, a punk May picks up in a park. All three characters are weirdly attracted to May and all end up forming part of her living doll.

The Frankenstein theme nicely overlaps a gently spoon-fed back-story involving childhood insecurities regarding the mother’s social embarrassment of May’s lazy-eye and her only ‘real’ friend is a glass encased doll called Suzy that she is not allowed to physically touch thus highlighting the repressive and damaging nature of her childhood. Sutured into this are issues of self-harm, sexual ambiguity, experimentation, first love, alienation and death making this much more than your regular B-movie schlock horror. May is a decent horror movie with blood, guts, limbs, a lazy-eye and most importantly brains.

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