Based on a play by Tracy Letts, this claustrophobic thriller from Exorcist director William Friedkin focuses on the love story between a man (Michael Shannon) and a woman (Ashley Judd) convinced that the government is implanting insects in its citizens. Harry Connick Jr. plays the woman's abusive ex-husband in this nightmare tale of paranoia that takes place in an America where no one - least of all the authorities - can be trusted. -netflix
Let me preface my review by saying that this is a fucked up movie. I largely wanted to see this for 2 reasons... Ashley Judd and giant bugs. Who doesn't like a giant man-eating insect movie? Well, if you are thinking of viewing this one for the large bugs... don't. I wrestled with the decision to mention that this movie doesn't have giant insects in it, but wanted to make sure no one who was reading this review would expect that they were going to see them. However, Ashely Judd is there and hot (and nude) as ever. Even made-up or made-down to look like some white-trash loser... she is still hot.
Judd plays a woman who is living in a seedy motel in the middle of nowhere. She is plagued by fear of her abusive ex-husband and by guilt of losing her young son while at a grocery store a decade ago. A co-worker drops by with a guy she just met, who soon becomes friends with the woman. As they gain each other's trust (and bodily fluids), he opens up and tells her a story of how we was an unwitting participant in government experiments gone wrong. He believes he is infested with bugs and soon convinces the woman that she is as well. As far as what takes place after that... I can only repeat that this is a fucked up movie. The psychological implications are pretty spot on and reflect how someone who is dying for someone or something to believe in can be brainwashed and taken to and beyond the brink of sanity.
Even though I was expecting giant bugs and didn't get them... I still enjoyed this movie. As soon as it was over, I couldn't decide whether I liked it or not... but after reflecting on it for a few minutes, I decided that I did. The effects were few and most of the entire movie takes place in this one shitty little hotel room... but the acting was top notch. If you are in the mood for a giant insect movie... look elsewhere, but if you are in the mood for a psychological thriller of sorts... then you should pick this one up.