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Tuesday, June 2, 2020

DREAMLAND REVIEW



On the night of the strangest wedding in cinema history, a grotesque gang boss hires a stone cold killer to bring him the finger of a fading, drug-addicted jazz legend.

Starring: Juliette Lewis, Stephen McHattie, and Henry Rollins

Directed by: Bruce McDonald

Written by: Tony Burgess, and Patrick Whistler

  Before jumping into “Dreamland,” the first thing to note is that this story follows two characters introduced at the end of the 2008 film “Pontypool.” Yea two characters the audience might have thought filmmakers were just having fun with in the post-credits…Johnny Dead Eyes (Stephen McHattie) and Lisa the Killer (Lisa Houle). It looked like they were ready for adventure, and they get it in this movie. And don’t worry if you missed them in “Pontypool,” or missed the movie itself, this movie follows its own path.
  And what an interesting path it takes featuring some unique characters. The story follows Johnny Dead Eyes, and his doppelgänger The Maestro (Stephen McHattie). Similar in look and in where they are in life. Johnny is a hitman, who in the opening minutes, proves he’s good at what he does. The Maestro is also good at what he does, but his fault is he’s got a little bit of a drug problem. Johnny is looking to put down his gun for good, and The Maestro looks like he needs to put his instrument away.
  What brings them together is a crazy man named Hercules (Henry Rollins), who is running a disgusting business while ordering people to be hurt and killed. Things turn when he orders Johnny to cut off one of the fingers of The Maestro, and he can’t do it. This brings some tension between the two, and things get worse when Johnny interferes with the marriage of the Vampire (Tomas Lemarquis) and a young girl.
  So that’s the basis of the story, but what makes this film is definitely the characters, and the actors playing them. Stephen did a great job in “Pontypool” and continues that here. He really brings to life two very particular characters. Henry makes Hercules easy to hate, and even Tomas brings out the creepy in the Vampire. And that’s not even counting Juliette Lewis’ contribution to her role as the Countess. 
  Now lets go back to the story. It’s definitely a strange one to go along with the interesting cast of characters. There’s lots of imagery and some dream sequences that are just weird. It adds to the art of the film, and definitely puts this story in a dreamland. However, the old school feel is nice to go along with a good old shootout to wrap things up. Of course, they have to leave it off in another odd dreamlike state!
  So don’t get it confused, this isn’t a sequel to “Pontypool.” It just so happens that it features two characters from the post-credits of that movie. “Dreamland” is very much its own film, that lives up to its name. There are plenty of points where it seems like a dream, and very much set in a dreamland filled with the likes of hitmen, gangsters, and even vampires. Its these characters and the actors behind them that make the movie. With that, I give it 2.5 pools of blood.

  HorrO

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