Let’s watch a movie about a job that everyone can relate to – assassin. And since this is Horror Lasagna, it gets horrific. I mean, even more horrific than someone killing someone. we’ll just move on.
Like a lot of horror, there’s some question of what is really happening. Especially the end, but we won’t give it away. Well, actually, we will, but not in the notes. You have to listen to the episode to find out what goes on. Or, here’s a crazy thought, watch the movie. Unless you just really like to hear us.
Stephen: let’s just jump right in and talk about our movie today. We’ve been hammering these out pretty good.
Maybe I’ll pick up the pace a bit, getting ’em on the website. But today we’re doing kill List. Yes. Which sounds like a action movie.
Rhys: Yes, it is a British film from 2011 and the main character in the movie, his name’s Jay and he’s played by Neil Masco. And I was watching an interview with Neil Masco, and he described it as a former soldier’s descent into madness as he takes on what should be his last job.
It doesn’t anywhere near cover it. So that was his description of what this movie is.
Stephen: Yeah I understand his description, but yeah, it doesn’t really cover it. And the, actually, this is one of the few films that I didn’t feel The Madness was very explicit, if that’s what they were trying to show.
It seemed pretty straightforward. Yeah.
Rhys: It was, it’s pretty just straightforward. P T S D is what it is. Yeah. And people who are leaning into that to make a
Stephen: profit. Yeah. Which really describes Bo as afraid a bit also.
Rhys: Oh, there you go. This was written by Director Ben Wheatley and his wife Amy Jump.
And he wrote the movie specifically for Neil Maskel, the actor. And for Michael Smiley. He had both those guys in mind. They didn’t have to audition, they just had to say they’d be willing to do it. Wow. So they never even considered doing using anybody else. The film made an estimated was made on an estimated budget of about 500 pounds.
500 pounds? Yeah. 500,000 pounds. Okay. I was
Stephen: gonna say, wow. I’m impressed for 500 pounds. Yeah.
Rhys: What I thought was a dec, I missed a zero is what it is. It grossed about $29,000 in the us because it mostly did festivals and had a very limited run here worldwide. It did a lot of festivals and then it would have regular runs in various countries and it made about 450,000 worldwide.
Stephen: About broke even?
Rhys: Yeah, just about. It’s pretty critically acclaimed. It was nominated for 21 awards. It won three of them. It premiered at South by Southwest and went to several festivals from there. And it clocks in at 95 minutes. Nice. Comfortable. Yeah.
Stephen: Length, time. And we’ve talked about this before, the feel of it was very classic.
There was like three quarters of the movie was billed and then it was like bam at the end.
Rhys: Yeah. Wheatley is from Essex. He has 21 projects in his past. I think he might be two years younger than us, roughly. As far as age wise goes. He started with a 10 minute short called Rob Loves Carrie, and he directed six different television series including two episodes of the first two episodes of Season eight of Dr.
Who. Oh, cool. Wow. Yeah. Down Terrace was a crime film and it was his first major motion picture. And it did well enough that it got, allowed him to get the financing to make this, that he was in. That he was doing. One of the downsides to it, and I was telling you this yesterday, is that Down Terrace is pretty much just a straight London crime movie, right?
And so I was reading somebody’s blog where they were complaining about Kill List, cuz they were like, the first two thirds of this movie were perfect. And then the last third, it was like he just threw in these horror elements and yanked the rug out under you and sat there laughing at you while you reeled trying to recover from it all.
I thought, oh, that’s a little dramatic. And one of the comments, and it was, did you not watch the trailer for this?
Yeah. He has three other films that show up on my list. He did a film called A Field in England which he did a couple years after he did Kill List. He did the Letter U on the ABCs of Death. And he did a recent film called In the Earth and more so in the Earth, in a field in England, share.
They’re very into psychedelics, so they’re horror movies, but they also have this kind of underlying psych, just visions and stuff like that. He has two films in pre-production right now. One’s called Freak Shift, which I don’t know much about. The other one is called the MEG two, the Trench, which I think is the sequel to the Megalodon movie.
That was out recently. Yeah,
Stephen: I remember that book came out like in the nineties, and they just made a movie about it, like last decade.
Rhys: It’s an interesting concept. He seems an odd director to be doing the sequel, branch out, do whatever. Yeah. He worked on this script for a kill list with his wife.
They’ve been together since they were 16 and he said in an interview, when they write together it gets stormy meaning their relationship. But as they edit the work, everything is pretty cool and fine in the long run, so Wow. So he had done down terrace, then he saw Ermo do Toros the orphanage and he was shocked by the level of violence and he thought it was gonna be some sort of Spanish art film.
And so when the violence ratcheted up, he was like, I had no idea what the movie was going to be now. It was suddenly unpredictable, which is what I love about horror movies. And because of that, he decided he was going to incorporate that into his new project, which was Kill Less. He wanted a tale that would be unpredictable, but he wanted to encourage the audience to be thinking about the film while it was going and while it was over.
Okay. He also didn’t want his protagonist to be too likable, and I think he kinda succeeded there. Yeah. I liked Gal. I liked him pretty well, but Jay is kind of Dick Yeah. Through the whole movie and his interaction with pretty much everyone but his son,
Stephen: He’s a bit cold and standoffish through a lot of it.
Volatile. Yeah. Just the one scene where he cooks the rabbit and he is sitting outside on his own, he is I did it. Yep. Yeah. Right there,
Rhys: just to show you. He wanted the viewer to start the film off liking them and then reflect on their actions as they go up through the film and like them less and less as time goes on.
Down terrace. When he did that was very critically received too. And it surprised him. He was like surprised by his success. And it gave him the financial backing to make this movie and he wanted to make a scary film and he never gave any consideration that he might be making something that was over the top.
But looking back on it, there are scenes of this movie that he won’t watch. Wow. Yeah. He wanted to work off of a Stanley Kubrick model where the imagery comes first and then the story is built around that. Okay. And there’s actually a scene that we’ll get to where I was like, oh, you can see Kubrick’s influence, cuz the scenes in the hotel look an awful lot like the shining, the way the camera moves, the way the architecture is.
Yeah. I can see that. Yeah. Once he actually had something to show, he took it to the financiers and showed it to them and they were scared about their investment cuz they thought the movie was too violent and too frightening. But he assured them it was gonna be okay. And like you said, it about broke even.
Stephen: Which, for smaller horror movies. That’s good. Saying a lot. And this is another one of those council supported ones too. Correct.
Rhys: So he got some sort of government financing with it as well. So when we say he broke even that’s just looking at gross receipts. The investment money that came in, not the investment money, but the lottery money that came in probably took up, a decent chunk of that.
So he actually was kinda profitable. That’s before it goes to streaming and
Stephen: Right. Which is not all over, but it is out
Rhys: there. Yeah, it is. Neil Maskel plays j. Wheatley wrote the part with him in mind. He’s been in 115 other projects, but he’s very British based and I think one of the main reasons is that accent that you hear him have in this film is legit.
That’s how he talks. And so it would be hard to put him into any kind of mainstream film that’s gonna play in America, because there are times where his accent’s so thick, you have a hard time
Stephen: understanding what he’s saying. Yeah, I absolutely thought that. And the sound was a bit soft overall.
I had to turn it up a bit more on this one, which, could have been where I was watching it or whatever too. You never know. But
Rhys: yeah, if any of you listening to this have some sort of preconceived no notions of what EastEnders is and what it sounds like. He was in EastEnders and he sounds like he’s from EastEnders.
He was in the British version of Shameless. I didn’t know that Shameless was a British Wow. I dunno. Import or an export from us. He was in Drunk History uk, which I can see him doing and Peaky Blinders, which seems to be up his genre. Yeah. As far as the film goes, as far as films go, he was in Basic Instinct two.
Again, I didn’t even know they made a sequel to that movie.
Stephen: And you probably still don’t care.
Rhys: Yeah. I’m not gonna go watch it, but I am curious to see if they made it. And he was in the 2017 version of The Mummy,
Stephen: Oh, okay. I love that movie. I’ll have to try and catch him where he is at.
Rhys: Yeah, he doesn’t like horror movies.
He went and tried to, he saw an ad for Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and he just said he wasn’t gonna go. He’s not gonna go see that. Cause it, it’s so funny cuz he plays such a hard ass in this movie. Yeah. And those kind of movies just freak him out and they give him bad dreams, so he doesn’t even bother going.
Stephen: Actually there’ve been multiple times. You hear an actor say, yeah, I don’t really like scary movies, I’ve been acting in a few. Yeah. Interesting. And it’s also
Rhys: funny cuz he stars in a lot of the movies he’s starred in that we’ve never heard of are like, rise of the Foot Soldier and the Englishman, and one called He Kills Coppers.
So almost every time his mom hears that he’s in a new film, she hates it because as she says, he’s not a thug. He’s really sweet. Oh, that’s hilarious. Yeah. He has one upcoming film. It’s a short called The Departure. And when we talk about the next actor, Michael Smiley, Ben Wheatley says, if there was a BAFTA award for swearing oh, Neil has, Neil Masco would win it.
Michael Smiley, he’s from Belfast Irishman. He’s been in 108 different projects. Lots of ’em we won’t know. And again, a lot of times he’s cast as a thug. He was in Shawn of the Dead Lon Order uk. He was in Down Terrace. He was in the ABCs of Death, an episode of Black Mirror. He’s in Wheatley’s next film, A Field in England.
He was in World’s End and an episode of Dr. Who if you haven’t done it yet, go back to season three and watch the Hallow. Because he’s the police officer, the Garda in that movie. Oh, okay. Nice. Yeah, so we’ve seen him before. He’s also been in other films like The Lobster, which is a perfectly bizarre film.
He was Rogue One, which, you know, Wow. Looking your background. Yeah. Nice. He was in the Nun and Gunpowder milkshake, a film I just watched called Censor, and he’s got two in production, one called Bookworm and one called Obituary.
Stephen: It’s a lot of good movies. Yeah. Been in,
Rhys: yeah he’s seems to be far more international working than Maco was Neil Maco.
Mianna. Buring plays Shell. She was born in Sweden and she moved, she was born in Sweden. She moved to Oman when as a child was raised in Oman. And at 14 she moved to the u, the United Kingdom. Wow. Okay. So she’s been around a lot. She has a film in post-production called 97 Minutes and she’s been involved in 62 projects.
And some of these, I’m not gonna say some of these, a lot of these, I’m gonna mention them and you’re gonna be like, you’re kidding. And it’s mostly because the color of her hair, they like really bleached her hair out. She was in the descent one and two. Okay. Which means shes the girl who, she’s the protagonist who goes into the cave, survives the caves, monsters gets out, and then the police take her back in.
And I would’ve never recognized her. Wow. Yeah. It’s crazy. She was in Grindhouse the Devil’s playground, the Twilight Saga. She’s been in such television programs as Dr. Who Downton. Abey and the Witcher. Oh. Interest. If you watch the Witcher, she’s Tesa. Who is like the, in the show? She’s the head mistress of all the sorcerers.
Stephen: Oh wow. Yeah, wouldn’t no recognize her at all. Yeah. And I, when you said she’s from, born in Sweden yeah. She spoke Swedish so effortlessly. Fluently, yeah. That I like, yeah. She, I must be from there. Yeah. Couldn’t believe she learned that for the show.
Rhys: Yeah. It’s ironic she was also in the Witcher, cuz she did voiceover work on the Witcher three.
Not as to say as she plays a different character, but so interesting. Yeah. Struan Roger is the last actor we’ll talk about. He plays the mysterious client. He was born in 1946 in Manchester. And a lot of what he has on his 110 entries on his I M D B page is British television, so it’s unknown to us, but the stuff we would recognize, he was on Coronation Street and Armchair Theater.
A 1978 film adaptation of Le Miserable, which I did not know existed.
Stephen: Oh, gotta hunt it down now. Yeah.
Rhys: Chariots a Fire, Rumple of the Bailey, four Weddings and a funeral the television series. Highlander, not the movies.
Stephen: Oh, okay. I actually was just watching an episode of that the other day.
Rhys: Wallace and Grommet shows.
He did voiceover for that. Nice. He was on Game of Thrones and he plays a very loved character in Dr. Who.
Stephen: That’s where I recognized him from. Then he is the face of Beau. Okay. Maybe I didn’t recognize him from that then. Okay. Yeah.
From Walking Dead.
Rhys: Yeah, I can see that if Herschel had cancer and was really thin.
Stephen: Yeah, but the eyes, the structure, the cheeks and stuff were a lot similar. I had to do a double take at first. Yep.
Rhys: This film was funded by Phil Funds from the UK Film Council via the National Lottery. Good on them.
And it opens with this sigil being carved on the screen and it’s like a triangle and an arrow, and then there’s another line in the circle. Wheatley was really concerned when he came up with it that people would see it and instantly think that it was too similar to the shapes used in the Blair Witch Project.
Stephen: I could see that right
Rhys: away. Yeah. The biggest negative feedback he’s received that shocked him was that everyone thought it looked like the sign from the Deathly Hallows. Huh. Which he’s never read and he’s never seen. I was just talking about this on our special episode. I didn’t look up who did the soundtrack for this, but they do a great job of just, you can’t even really call them songs.
It’s just soundscapes and there’s this there’s some dissonance and then there’s this build and then all of a sudden it just drops, cuts
Stephen: off. Yeah. I made a comment about that.
Rhys: Yeah. It’s really great for tension building a
Stephen: and the scenes it’s in it, you’re like, you can see something maybe about to happen, tension building.
It’s gonna happen and then it’s not, and they’re like in a car with birds chirping. Yeah. And it was jarring. It was very disturbing in that way cuz it’s what’s gonna happen? And then nothing. So it was interesting choice.
Rhys: Yeah. And there are times where it. Is the tension sounding thing is building and then it seems like nothing happens, but it’s actually building because the scene you’re watching is referring to something that happens later in the film.
Stephen: Yes. And that, that I figured just knowing how those things usually work. Yeah. And I must say We want, I’ve made comments on this, some of these films, I’m like, wow, if I would’ve just watched this, I would’ve not have known it was a ad or a council winner, lottery winner, or it wasn’t this, that or the other thing.
It looked like a, a Marvel movie, the way it was filmed and all that. This one, like right away hit me as, this is a British film. This is one of the lottery winner films. It just had that look about it, the way the cinematography was. Yeah. Not
Rhys: unlike grabbers, for instance. Yes. When you watch Grabbers, you’re like, this is an Irish film.
This D Kills is certainly an English film. It represents British
Stephen: culture very much and it. The very opening couple scenes, the sound quality sounded less stellar than most movies, which would, if you watch any British tv, it had that almost hollow sound to it. Whatever they do when they’re recording it had a, it definitely different sound quality, which some people would be like, I didn’t notice anything.
I get that, yeah. But I, we’ve watched enough of these movies, high end, low end movies, you kinda start noticing a few things like that.
Rhys: And that’s what I liked about the opening to this, is that it was dark and you had that screechy thing carving the thing, and then you had the tension building music, and then it drops and it should be a release, but it drops into this bright white frame with Jay and shell arguing over money, like screaming at each other and it’s not a relief.
It’s not a release to the tension, it’s just like ominous, unknown tension. And then, oh my god, mommy and daddy are fighting again. Kind of tension.
Stephen: And he, and shell argue enough, she like goes berserk on him a couple times that you could e easily think, huh, this must be a movie about the wife being possessed.
Rhys: He has been out of work for eight months, we find out, and he’s not in any hurry to get a job and shell really,
Stephen: and we don’t really know what the job is at this point correct.
Rhys: Yeah. And the first time I watched this, I assumed that shell really didn’t know what the job was either.
Stephen: Yeah. You got that at the beginning.
Rhys: yeah. He’s not even good at fixing stuff around the house, which we see as he’s trying to repair their hot tub. He’s got no idea what he’s doing.
Stephen: I know the feeling. I just had to fix my lawnmower.
Rhys: So we finally get a little break from that home, and there’s this nice like setting set shot where you have a small, nice contained British town in the middle of an English rural surrounding which is, it’s a nice little break.
So it’s just, but then we go back, right back to Jay and he is on some kind of medication, I’m guessing for his back. Maybe. Did I lose you think I did?
There we go. Yeah, that was on me. I forgot to turn the VPN off. Okay. Which I had done last time and so it lasts for 24 hours and so it kicked off. Which, but which
Stephen: it this, so That’s okay. We’re good. We’ll edit that. So we were talking about the opening scene.
Rhys: Yeah. We get the idea that Jay’s on some kind of medication.
I’m, I was assuming for his back, he’s taking some kind of pills. He’s shaving and his kid playfully pats him on the back and he ends up cutting himself.
Stephen: He winced. So Yeah. Cause there’s an argument about his back. They never really go into what he did and Exactly. If it really is bad, cuz shell doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with it.
Rhys: Yeah. She’s pretty convinced. It’s not that he’s just mucking about, doesn’t want to get a job. But we also find out he’s bad at shopping. She’s there’s this, there was a grocery she sees is he didn’t get toilet paper. You got 10 bottles of wine and no toilet paper. He is you should have given me a list.
She’s there’s a list on the fridge. So he goes outside and plays with swords with his kid and she goes upstairs and calls her mother back in Sweden and is crying on the phone with her mom speaking Swedish.
Stephen: And you get the feeling here that the marriage really has problems, which I’m not saying it doesn’t, but they intersperse it with lots of great moments of them getting along and loving each other and playing with the kid.
So it, it’s an interesting opening to get a sense of the characters cuz it like the music, it’s a little jarring.
Rhys: Yeah. And just, illustrate your point. She’s upstairs on her own crying. He’s out on his own smoking a cigarette, and then the next scene is all three of them hugging each other and then all three of them go out and play with swords in the front yard.
Which, You ha they slow the film down. So it’s running at about three quarter speed. So it’s moving in slow motion. And they put in some of that tension building music and you’re like, what’s going on? Yeah. And then it cuts right to him putting his son to bed. And the main reason that’s in there is because that scene is a foreshadow of the end of the movie.
Stephen: And it gives you a more of a clue of his job, the way he’s, what he’s describing with the story. Yeah.
Rhys: Yeah. He’s telling the story to his son and he’s talking about being a military bodyguard in Iraq and how stuff’s blowing up. And then the boy tells him that he shouldn’t yell at his mom.
Don’t yell at mom. They’re having a cocktail party. And so he’s actually shaking as he buttons up his shirt. You, if you look real close, his hands are shaking a little bit. You get the feel he is not crazy about having Yeah. These kinda things.
Stephen: Even though it’s like his
Rhys: best friend. Yeah. Yeah.
That’s the weird thing. It’s gal and Fiona and they show up at the dinner party and there’s a picture. We get a lot of background here because Fiona is new to the couple, and so she’s acting as us where she’s like asking questions like, oh, here’s a picture of Shell in a military uniform. And she’s yeah, I was in the Swedish National Service.
And then we see a photo of Gal and Jay, and they served together as well when they were in Iraq. There’s a camp, oh, go ahead.
Stephen: I was gonna say, knowing that Shell was in military service really shows up near the end. You’re like, suddenly she’s not just the housewife.
Rhys: Yes. Yeah. When stuff’s going down, she’s there for it.
Stephen: And she’s a damn good shot. She does, she do. She double taps every single shot. Do you notice that? It just shooting. It was bam. Bam. And she moves right to the next one.
Rhys: Yep. Her as opposed to Jay in this film? Shell reminds me a lot of the guy from Hold the Dark. Oh, okay. Where it’s no nonsense.
I’m good at killing things and I’m just gonna do it I’m not gonna weep about it. I’m not gonna get angry about it. It’s just something I do. Bang, you’re dead. And I’ll move on to the next
Stephen: one. Yeah. Professional in, in some ways she shows more professionalism than her husband.
Rhys: Yeah. There’s all kinds of problems with Jay as a hitman.
There’s campfire and Gal and Jay are sitting there talking about a job. Gal’s got one lined up if Jay wants to do it, and Jay’s not interested and Gal already mentioned it to Shell and Jay’s really pissed about that because it means that Shell’s going to, that’s why she’s been on his ass cuz she knows there’s a job waiting out there.
He just needs to take it. At dinner we find out that shell’s not religious. Fiona heads off to the bathroom and when she gets back we get some knowledge about Jay’s last job. He tells her he was doing it, which makes me wonder about you now.
Stephen: Keep wondering.
Rhys: Yeah. He was gone for three months.
Fiona says she’s a corporate hatchet man. It’s her job to get hired in, to go in and basically fire people. She takes a jab at Jay over work and then gal kind of jumps on jabbing at Jay and the conversation seems politely contentious until Jace just had it. He flips his plate over and then he pulls the tablecloth off from underneath the things and says ab fucking dabra, and then storms out of the room.
Wheatley’s wife wrote that scene based on her remembrances from childhood. So Wow. She grew up in a very happy household.
Stephen: Obviously they say write what you
Rhys: know. Yeah. And if you are ever gonna pull a tablecloth off a table, you’re supposed to pull it down, not up. You have a better chance leaving the plates and, but I think he wanted to make a mess too.
Yeah. Jay and shell start yelling at each other, and it’s one of those ridiculously awkward situations where you’re in public and your buddy and his wife are over there screaming at each other. You’re like, okay, what do we do? But fortunately for gal, he sees Sam in the foyer, and so he picks the little boy up and takes him back, sta back upstairs and tucks him back into bed.
Then we see if the cat is on the table eating leftovers. Shell and Fiona are talking and Jay’s out smoking in the garage and gal joins him. Jay says he’s interested in the job now, asks if it’s local and how many are on the list. And gal says there are three. And if you’re wondering what kind of list it is, G Gal pulls out this big ass gun out of a case in Jay’s garage and that pretty well seals it
Stephen: for you.
Yep. I even said now we know what the job is. It has guns. Yep.
Rhys: It turns out that Jay’s last job was probably a hidden Kiev and it went really badly for one reason or another. So they, everybody seems to be past it. And the next scene, everyone’s laughing, they’re having a nice time, they’re telling jokes and stories and dancing, and he apologizes to shell, Fiona and gal kinda wrestle around and then you have this kind of.
Love song while they’re dancing. And then there’s a cut to Fiona in the bathroom and she takes the mirror off the wall, carves that symbol in the silver ring on the back of the mirror, puts it back up and takes the shaving accident, bloody paper towels with her in her pocket and then leaves.
Stephen: Yeah. That was really weird.
Rhys: It hints to the witchcraft. It does. That’s involved with the whole thing. Gal and Jay start wrestling over if gal is actually sober enough to drive or not. And it actually looks like gal wins the match. But Jay wins the argument because they end up in a cab driving off, being shuttled off together.
And then Jay says, thank fuck that’s over. So even though, his best friend was there and everything and it ended all fine, he is Hey, didn’t wanna do it. Yeah. These are all signs of like depression and PTs. D he doesn’t want to go back to work. He’s anxious about going back to work. He doesn’t wanna be in social events.
He just ends up drinking by himself, sitting in his broken down hot tub.
Cuts. I’m sure he’s helping his back. Yes. We cut to his Sam waking Jay up in the morning. He apologizes to Sam for being an idiot the night before cuz he was drinking. You never Dr. You don’t touch the stuff he tells him. And the next day the adults seem to be getting along better. Jay does find a dead rabbit out in the yard and he blames the cat.
And Shell’s asking why she, he asks, she asks why the cat does it. She thinks the cat’s just taking the piss. I e playing a prank on them. And he points out that Cats can’t do that. Shell so he says he’s gonna eat it. Yeah. And he picks.
Stephen: I did find it interesting. They didn’t really show the mangled rabbit, but all the horrific stuff later, it’s oh, we don’t wanna show this and disturb people.
Rhys: Yeah. But he does, he cooks it up with some garlic and onions and then eats it, even though it disgusts shell. He’s just sitting out in the chair in the middle of the lawn eating it, waving to Shell and Sam.
Stephen: Yeah. There’s something disturbing about that man doing that. That was
Rhys: weird. Yeah. He’s going to be right no matter what.
He drives over to gals. Fiona is gone. She apparently taped a dear John letter to his penis. But there’s no time to lament. He says it’s time to meet the client. They, he does these really great setting shots, and I mentioned it before with the town, the hotel shot that they’re going into, went.
The hotel completely fills the frame. It is just this very imposing looking building. Yeah. And anything that’s gonna happen in there is not gonna be good.
Stephen: Yeah. It definitely makes it a character in a way.
Rhys: Yeah. They’re getting out of the car and when they get outta the car, there’s a rainbow over their car.
And a lot of people like wondering about significance of the rainbow. It was actually just there when they shot it. So they get out, they go into the meeting gal’s putting a gun on before he goes to the meeting, and Jay is I don’t, you’re taking a gun to the meeting. And gal’s do you know who’s there?
Because I fucking don’t. Precaution is the better part of politeness. Apparently there’s this very empty dining room where they meet the client. Then you have this whole shining like transition as they move through the hotel, from the dining room to a guest room. I’m assuming this guy’s got a giant pile of bills.
He works a little bloodletting into the deal cutting Jay’s hand and his hand and putting it on the contract. Yep. Then the guy mentions how Kiev went so poorly, so apparently he knows about whatever happened in Kiev more than we do for that matter. Gal is offended by the guy’s lack of manners, and he is it doesn’t cost them anything to be polite and apparently this is a problem most people have when they’re hiring hit men.
They’re just not polite enough.
Stephen: Yeah. That’s a qualification only plate clients. But to
Rhys: show you how used to it these guys are, they automatically come up with a plan to leave the hotel that will draw the least amount of attention to the fact that Jay’s have got a wounded hand. So Shell’s gonna wa get, not Shell gal’s gonna walk on one side, blah, blah, blah.
And so here’s where our previous conversation comes in. Wheatley originally had a theory about this movie of being an anthology almost. Where you would have something that ties these stories together at the start and ties the stories together at the end. And then you have basically three separate short movies in between.
And so he see, he saw this kind of, that way. He goes back to home, he’s got this money. Someone’s fixing the hot tub now life’s good. He dresses really nicely. To go kill somebody.
Stephen: Hitman always dressed nice.
Rhys: Yes. And as stormy as the relationship is, he l seems to love Shell and his kid gal is hitting on the girl at the hotel as they’re checking in, Jay’s card is declined.
So he goes off to yell at shell about that gal pays for the room and they decide to do it right. They’re not just gonna drive by and shoot the guy. They’re gonna surveil him.
Stephen: And the thing about the card, they made it sound like the card was from the client that supplied the card with the money for the room or something.
Or they were waiting for the transfer of money or, something like that. I didn’t quite, I was like, huh, that’s interesting. But yeah, it’s not a major part of the movie.
Rhys: They do have this scene where they’re in the hotel dining room meeting dinner, and there’s an emotional support group in there eating, and the guy starts to play this guitar.
And Jace just had it. And he takes the guitar from the guy and he’s you’re not doing this ever again. The guy’s sometimes God’s love is hard to swallow and Jay answers. So is a dinner plate.
Stephen: And honestly that is, I don’t care what song it is, what group you are to just pick up a guitar and start playing in the middle of the restaurant, that’s rude as hell.
Absolutely. For everybody else, I don’t care what your intentions are. Whatever. Yeah. Or how religious you are and they are. It’s just, come on,
Rhys: gal finds it hilarious. Yeah. And you have this big musical buildup as they’re like heading back to the room and then it cuts to black and you have a title card.
And we are now in the first of the three little movies that he plans to put in here,
Stephen: which, which made me think of a snatch or something like the title card. Jumping up with a hitman thing, with the
Rhys: accent. Yeah. The priest is what it says. Yeah. Gal’s, the most religious of all of them and killing a priest makes him uneasy.
They’re, they go to the church and they’re back breaking into the back of the church. And the scenes of that are all interspersed with the priest while he’s running the service. Right after he completes all of his tasks, the priest goes back into his office and he suddenly confused as to why there’s plastic covering everything in his office.
He turns to see Jay pointing this silence pistol at him and Jay tells him to turn around cuz he doesn’t wanna look him in the face as he shoots him. Apparently the priest thanks him and Jay shoots him. Dude, yeah. Done. Wrap it up in the plastic, throw the body out the window, take it somewhere and incinerate it.
Number one down.
Stephen: But you got that little hint. Why the heck did the priest say thank you?
Rhys: Thank you. Yes. He goes back to the hotel and he calls Shell and they talk. And it seems as though she’s, about here is where you realize, oh, she knows what he does for a living. She’s behind this cuz she asks how it went.
Was it clean? Then she says, Fiona came around with a present for Sam and she’s hanging around and shell doesn’t mind, she likes her just fine. There’s this scene of Jay lying on his bed and you can see how o c d he is. All of his stuff is laying out, right? The gal on the other hand is feeling remorseful or guilty, and he takes the photograph of their target, this priest, and he burns it.
So he’s trying to absolve himself. Gal didn’t know that Fiona was talking to shell, so now he thinks it’s because she misses it. So now they’re surveilling this guy called the librarian and the guy has what they call a lockup, we would call it a warehouse. They decide to go check out what’s in there, and it’s a cavernous place.
It’s huge. Inside, it’s a shipping container and inside that is basically they call it a wank den. There’s like porn everywhere. They find a collection of video DVDs, gal starts playing it. All you hear are screams. You never actually get to see what’s on screen. However, Jay goes to watch it and whatever is there, it actually makes him weep.
And you have, there’s there’s tons of this stuff all over the place.
Stephen: You get a. This guy’s just the librarian, so where, and that, that was an interesting thing. Porn, everybody kind of understands, but doing that pulp fiction thing where you don’t get to see what it is. Yeah. It leaves it wide open and it’s the worst thing you can think of.
Yeah. Which is what exactly.
Rhys: Yeah. Oh, you get a title card. And now we start the second movie that he planned to make in this little anthology called The Librarian. This is the scenes here are the ones that Wheatley won’t watch when he watches this movie again. He skips these, oh, I can understand that.
Yeah. There’s a harsh cut to Jay just punching this guy in the face. They get him indoors and tied to a chair, and the guy is defiant. He’s, take what you want. I don’t have much, blah, blah, blah. And then Jay says, oh, we saw the lockup. And then he starts to cry like instantly. He says it’s not fair.
He’s just a librarian. Jay continues to beat on him. He wants to know who filmed it. Who are you storing this for? The guy refuses to give up any of that information. Jay lights a cigarette and proceeds to burn him with the cigarettes. And then Jay basically tortures him enough that he does roll on his clients.
Stephen: Yeah, I Extremely painful looking torture. Yeah.
Rhys: Yeah. Yeah. This is, I we’re nearing like martyr’s levels of here. Yeah. Way this guy gets beat on. And again, he’s
Rhys: thank you. That’s just it. He’s crying the whole time until gal goes off to get the guy’s money from a safe. And as soon as gal’s gone, the guy completely sobers up.
Yeah. And he asked Jay if gal knows who he is, and Jay is like confused. And the guy’s oh, he doesn’t, does he? And he says, before Gal gets back, he just wants to say thank you. And he’s glad to have met him. Yeah. And that puts Jay over the top. He grabs a hammer and just starts wailing, hits the knees first, then a hand.
All while this is happening, gal is in there pulling out a huge stack of cash out of this safe and this really thick file that he pulls out. And between screams, the guy just keeps saying Thank you. Gal doesn’t even want to go downstairs to see what’s going on. He just sits upstairs while the screaming’s going on.
And then Jay bashes the librarian’s head in with a hammer.
Stephen: That’s really gruesome looking
Rhys: too. Yeah. Yeah. Yep. Now Jay insists they head off to kill the people who paid the librarian. Gal is not a fan. He is this is a job. It’s not a crusade.
Stephen: So then you gotta wonder what the heck was on that video to make a hitman.
Wanna do this for free, just to get revenge on people that he doesn’t even know, anyone in the video? Yeah.
Rhys: Yeah. They go off to some construction site. Gal doesn’t even want to go in. He’s gonna sit there and he is okay, I’ve got the gun and I’ll give you 20 minutes and if you, I don’t hear from you, I’m coming in.
So he waits and 20 minutes goes by and he goes in and there’s a dead dog and the tea kettle’s going off and there’s this guy in this other room that Jay has just been beating on for a full 20 minutes. Then he just shoots him and he is was that 20 minutes? Yeah. Like I was having such a good time, I didn’t even pay attention.
He gets cleaned up and they build a bonfire and burn the whole lot He says he shouldn’t feel bad because they are bad people who deserve to suffer. Which if you’re putting that as the bar
Stephen: define it. Yes.
Rhys: Yeah. Back at the hotel, he looks out his window and Fiona is in the field below waving at him and it has a dreamlike quality and he doesn’t mention it. So I’m assuming it was a
Stephen: dream. Yeah. And then you really gotta start wondering about him. When you’re starting to see illusion, you lose track of time while killing somebody and then you start seeing delusions of people.
Rhys: Yeah. The next day, gal drops him off at home, Fiona’s there hanging out with Shell he takes his shirt off and he finds that the cut on his hand is infected and the infection has run up his arm. So he’s off to the doctors. The doctor seems much more interested in his psych profile than he is his hand.
He doesn’t even wanna look at the wound on his hand. And it turns out he’s not the usual doctor that Jay gets. And he gives Jay this advice. He says, the past is gone. The future is not yet here. There is only ever this moment gives him some drugs and sends him on his way. And Jay never seems to stop and think about what was up with that.
Stephen: Yeah. It you’re starting to get the picture that there’s some undercurrent, something going on. There’s some people that we don’t really know about yet. It’s clear as the movie viewer if you’re really paying attention. Yeah. Though it’s done still very subtly that you don’t know what’s going on yet.
Rhys: Yeah. It reminds me of Midsummer too, where you’re like, w what are these guys on? This whole time. Yeah. Because we know that Fiona put some sigil on the back of his mirror in the bathroom. We don’t know what that’s actually doing to him every time he looks in the mirror. It could be rewriting it.
Yeah, it’s hard to say. Gal is at home, he’s drinking, going through these photographs that he got out of the file folder that he got from the librarian. There’s pictures of them watching the priests. There’s pagan drawings and an entire file on the incident in Kiev.
Jay, unfortunately, and unfortunately for Steve finds the cat hung
Stephen: on the porch. They already shot a dog. We didn’t see it, and that didn’t have to hear the animal. That’s, a totally different level.
Rhys: Jay says he loved the cat. He didn’t even realize it till just now. So they’re burying the cat.
Gal says they got enough cash from the librarian safe to dump the rest of this contract because all the rest of that stuff in that file was about them. And that’s just creepy. They get into an argument, gal wants out. Jay is on this crusade. He sells Jay. He needs help. And Shell is upset that gal is leaving.
And in fact, she’s upset enough that she starts wailing on Jay.
Stephen: Her typical reaction, it
Rhys: seems, yes, Jay and Sam share some time together. He suggests they might even get a dog. And then Sam asks if the cat’s in heaven, and Jay is eh, ask your uncle gal. That’s more his line of work than mine. On his return, he says he doesn’t want to talk about it.
Shell says gal’s about to quit. Oh, I’m sorry. She says, gal’s about to quit. He says, gal’s gone soft. And that’s when she starts hitting him. And she tells him to wake up. We cut to him asleep on his bed and she is gender tenderly kissing his forehead. There’s this kind of tender conversation where she points out that they may be compromised here, and it seems like he’s about ready to believe her.
He’s calmed down to that point. So he agrees with gal and the two of them meet with the client. And the client came with a lot more people this time. It wasn’t just him, right? They offered to get replacements and the client’s no good. If you quit, you die and your families die,
Stephen: and your dog and your bird and your fourth grade teacher.
Rhys: it’s not what we did. Your cat. They give him two new stacks of cash and a sealed envelope and the client says they’re cogs reconstruction, so keep turning. And then he and his entourage leave with a little pushing between gal and a couple of the guys. Shell is at home packing. She takes Sam to the, to their cottage in the woods until the whole job is over.
The last person on the list is an mp. It’s a member of Parliament. They’re a local governmental representative. Jay likes that better than the priests, so does gal. But they start fighting. The two of them start fighting. They’re just destroying their living room, their dining room and when they’re done, they just sit around drinking beer, and then off they go to kill the MP in title card.
Here’s the third part of this movie. It says the mp, they’ve got these tunnels and they travel through these tunnels that are underground till they get to this forest clearing. There’s a helicopter in the distance walking through the forest. They make a blind for all their gear. Gal gets Abra sa cones, two rabbits, and Jay makes tea, and Gal sings this nice little song about skinning a rabbit.
And then they’re surveilling the house. They sleep, and then Jay wakes gal up to apologize about everything and says he doesn’t know where it comes from. And gal says, I know, but you’re my best friend, so let’s leave it at that. And then Jay wakes gal up later, and gal’s not happy about being woken up twice in one night, but you can hear drums and a fife of some kind.
And so they grab their gear and find this torch wielding procession walking past. Yeah, they start to follow. Some of the people in the proces are naked. They’re all wearing masks made of reeds. It starts raining. There’s a freestanding noose set up in the middle of this field, and this woman gets on top of a stump.
Puts the noose around her neck and waves to everyone assembled and then steps off the stump. The whole thing has this very dreamlike quality, the whole
Stephen: scene. Yeah. You almost wonder if they are asleep, yeah.
Rhys: She’s starting to strangle at the, to the applause of the audience.
They’re all like, oh, Bravo. Well done. Yes, Jay has had it, and he just opens fire on the crowd and one member of the entourage, the MP turns, puts his arms open wide, and Jay shoots him. Technically, they have fulfilled their contract now, but the rest of the crowd rushes at them with this kind of scream, and now they’re running.
And it’s if I was to point to any part of this movie that was unbelievable for me, it would be that this military based veteran. Hitman would’ve gone you know what? I can’t. I just kept thinking, gal’s got that shotgun, which is useless at a huge crowd of people a hundred yards away. So I, but they didn’t know that was gonna be there.
I guess the only thing I can fault him is that he actually fired at them while they were a hundred yards away. That was just wasting your shots. Cause the shotgun’s not gonna do that much difference. They go into the tunnel and there’s this noise behind them. Gal hears something, a wall’s blocking their exit, but Jay knocks it down.
Revelers rush at them with knives. And here’s where gal’s shotgun is actually quite useful in these close quarters. Yeah, Jay continues down the tunnel, leaving gal behind one of the acolytes jumps him. And he takes her down and beats her to death basically. Yeah. He’s,
Stephen: he is definitely on, on the edge. You’re not beating somebody multiple times with other people running down your back unless you’re a little unstable.
Rhys: Yeah. Gal shot a whole pile of him, but he ends up in a tight space and is stabbed repeatedly before he can bring his gun around to bear,
Stephen: which is a good lesson. So if you’re going to stab, oh, you froze. Oh. If you’re gonna stab somebody, don’t just stab ’em once. You stab ’em multiple times. So there’s some education, at least in the movie.
There you go. Yes.
Rhys: Some things to take away from. Yeah. So he brings his gun to Barry. He actually does, manages to shoot them. Jay finds him, but it’s really too late. Gal knows it and asks Jay to tell Shell he’s sorry. And Jay ends up killing gal shoots, put him out of his misery. By the time he gets out of the tunnel, it’s daylight.
He’s sitting in his car poking at that infected wound on his hand, remembering gal, and then he heads out to the cabin with Shell and Sam. He has a little breakdown outside. Then he hears the noise outside or he’s inside. He hears the noise outside. He goes and checks his car and finds that his tires are slashed.
He goes outside, guns blazing and finds lit, torches all around his place, kisses shell, and tells her he loves her and goes out after. What he assumes is not many people left. As he’s looking down his scope, he gets cracked on the back of the head, Shell’s back of the house. She’s effectively taking two of them out with her silence pistol.
But it sounds like they just keep coming in and keep coming in. Yeah. And then we get a title screen to the hunchback, the part that ties the previous three movies into one little bundle. You have a bunch of cloaked figures wearing masks, naked women with vines over their eyes. And Jay is bound and kneeling.
They cut the bindings and then they recut his bad hand Al put a mask on his face and a knife in his hand and pull off his shirt.
Stephen: And he acts like he’s been drugged here.
Rhys: Yeah, because once they cut his bindings, he could have done something. Yeah. But he just stands there and lets them do whatever.
Yeah. They pull off his shirt, he thrust into a circle of them and they give him a knife so they even arm him, and he’s facing this masked knife wielding humpbacked figure. He’s defensive. He’s taking a defensive stance. He gets a few good stabs in there before he drops the figure and goes after it with a knife.
To the applause, the crowd. Oh no, Bravo. Well done. Then he pulls off his mask and he looks around and several of them remove their masks, revealing the client. And Fiona among the group, he reaches down and pulls the Hunchbacks mask off only to reveal its shell
Stephen: with Santa, which wasn’t a surprise.
Rhys: overly with Sam on her back and in his days sense Jay doesn’t even realize they put a crown of Reeds on his head and then they start to roll credits and there’s a song at the end. I’m not sure if it’s in Swedish or some other foreign language. That wasn’t anything I recognize, but it’s this little folky song as Yeah, credits role.
And that is Kill List. An interesting thing to note about it too is that
they. Wrote the play, they wrote the movie, but they were thin on dialogue purposely so that the actors could improvise a lot of the dialogue that they went through. Oh, interesting. And in fact, they even mention it as the credits roll in the back, there’s like additional dialogue by, and it was all shell, Jay and Gal,
Stephen: interesting. The overall, the movie reminded me a bit of wickerman,
Rhys: Someone’s compared it to Wickerman with guns.
Stephen: Yeah. A lot. It was difficult to figure out what we were supposed to take away from it. Ar you could argue the whole thing was Jay’s descent in the madness if you go with that tact.
Or it was more like they were looking for the chosen one for their group or something like that or, bringing Kaulu through the planes by a sacrifice and madness. I wasn’t really sure what they were trying to bring out in the movie, what they were trying to say.
Rhys: That was kinda the interesting thing to it for me was that there’s this sense of witchcraft and magic involved but not on a huge dramatic plane.
No, you did not see some massive ancient horror tentacle creature in the end, but you got the sense that like the sigils and the bloodletting and stuff actually had some sort of effect. Yes. And so it, it felt like this was a way of perhaps crowning the next ruler of the coven,
Stephen: maybe. Yeah. And the guys they killed wanted out saying thank you, releasing them.
Yeah, that’s good. I picked up on that, but. And they knew Jay. So it was obvious the whole group knew that these tests were going on and that he was being tested essentially. So
Rhys: we also don’t know what they knew either. They, he might have been born at a specific time or something like that.
How long has this coven been influencing his life? Maybe Kiev was a setup.
Stephen: Oh, that’s true. I never thought of that.
Rhys: So it’s really
Stephen: hard to say. See, this is one. If they make it into an American, they would hit us over the head and explain everything. Yes. So
Rhys: is the plan we’ve been working for years in place?
Yes, boss? Yes.
Stephen: Yes. Yeah. Yeah. Alright, so there’s kill list. Yeah. Again, if you like the Wicker man, this would probably fit right in with your viewing. Yeah.
Rhys: It is what did we say? It’s like the Wicker Man meets Martyrs a little bit. Where there’s this secret cabal that’s going ru run by wealthy people.
The apparently pain and suffering is part of it and there’s like sacrificial stuff that happens. But yeah, I, it was one of those kind of movies. I think of it more along the lines of the loved ones where it’s far heavier than you might think when you just pick it up to watch it.
Stephen: Yeah, it definitely was.
It’s another one of those that isn’t for everybody cuz it’s such a buildup to it and the buildup isn’t providing any of the scares or horror until afterwards when you think about it. Like you said, there’s hints but it’s not anything by itself that really is scary. No,
Rhys: horrific. With the li the whole treatment of the librarian is a very painful passage to watch.
Yeah. Yeah. The priests not so much. You see that kind of thing on, Broadcast television
Stephen: But that makes it a good build too. Yeah. Cause you know, the only thing with the priest was when he said thank you and turned around willingly so that you’re like why did he do that? And then the next one gets a little worse and the last one just all out.
Yeah. So it’s a good buildup in that way. Yep. All right. So kill this. There we go. What’s next? Next
Rhys: is we’re taking a trip back to, I believe, the 1970s a film called The
Stephen: Sentinel. The Sentinel. Awesome. Yes. So it’s a sci-fi robot movie,
Rhys: right? That’s exactly right. It’s a sci-fi
Stephen: robot movie. That’s his job.
He’s a guardian robot. The
Rhys: job in this is having a job and not even knowing you have it.
Stephen: Wow. Interesting. So we got some mystery going on with the next one. Yep. All right. So look forward to it. Cool man. Thanks. Yep.