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Film FestivalsMovie ReviewsTIFF 2019: Guns Akimbo Review

dannythemoviemanSeptember 24, 201974/100
Starring
Daniel Radcliffe, Samara Weaving, Rhys Darby
Writer
Jason Lei Howden
Director
Jason Lei Howden
Rating
18A (Canada)
Running Time
95 minutes
Release Date
n/a
Overall Score
Rating Summary
Guns Akimbo is certainly a film that won't be for everyone but those who can get past its campiness and violence and keep up with its hyperactive nature will be treated to a niche genre delight.

This will be one of many reviews during this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, to keep up with our latest coverage, click here.

The only thing that was truly disappointing about Guns Akimbo was the missed opportunity for this to play this in front of the Midnight Madness crowd!

When you tell people that there’s a film about someone who is sent to fight someone else to the death after getting guns sewn into his hands, it’s very likely that you’ll get one of two possible reactions. One being confused laughter, and the other being impressed laughter. If you, however, like myself, fall into the latter – you’re in for one of the most irresistibly entertaining films of TIFF this year with Guns Akimbo. There’s no denying that it starts rough but after adjusting to the oddball style it sets itself into, get ready for a great time. It’s absolutely worth mentioning that Radcliffe makes this as great as it was. Without the immense charm that he brings to Miles, it’s hard to say that the film would’ve worked as well as it did.

The one aspect that makes Guns Akimbo truly stand out is the editing. There’s so many jarring cuts, sound effects and colorful editing tricks that make this film like a coked-out Scott Pilgrim. While this may not work for particular audiences, those looking for a breath of fresh air will be satisfied by the breakneck way the film is pieced together. If anything, what lessens the effect of this was how it leans into the camp a little bit too much. At times, it’s too silly for it’s own good, and often feels like an obstacle for the filmmakers to make sure it’s as silly as it can be. Besides Radcliffe and Weaving as Nix, the supporting cast isn’t very memorable at all.

In the end, Guns Akimbo is a very odd film, and it totally makes sense why it has divided it’s audiences drastically. It’s campy, silly, hyper-actively edited and grossly violent. It’s a niche film for sure, but there’s no denying how enjoyable this is for genre film fans.

*still courtesy of IMDb*


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