American Mary

"Good"

American Mary Review


With a gleefully revolting tone, this Canadian thriller is a strange combination of sleekly beautiful visuals and a grotesque plot involving murder and torture. Fans of grisly black humour will love it, although the plot doesn't quite come together as various elements of the story are left hanging along the way. But it's notable for its exploration of the body-modification subculture, and for putting a female into the lead role as a woman who exacts horrible revenge on the men who abuse her.

The Mary of the title is a gifted surgical student (Isabelle) who is struggling to pay her bills, so decides to take a job in a strip club (it helps that she's seriously fit). But during her interview with the owner Billy (Cupo), she is asked to do some illicit surgery in a back room. And when word gets out, a dancer (Risk) hires her to perform a bit of extreme body modification. Mary's reputation quickly spreads around this fetish subculture, and her financial worries are over. This also gives her an idea about how to get revenge against her vile, sexist medical school professors (Lovgren and St Thomas).

For such a grisly story, the film shies away from most of the graphic detail, only giving us tantalising hints about the various operations Mary performs to alter people's bodies in rather freaky ways. So the mere idea of what she's doing is enough to make our stomachs turn. Strangely, the directors (who appear in the film as body-modified twins) also shy away from any real display of drama or sex, leaving key sequences feeling incomplete and intriguing characters, situations and storylines unresolved. This approach adds to the overall mystery but leaves gaping plot holes throughout the movie.

All of this makes it difficult to go with the flow, as it were. We can't identify with characters who are so thinly defined, no matter how nicely acted they are. But the Soskas are only interested in the gleaming surfaces, attractive cast members and just the vaguest hints of inner moral turmoil. Oddly, of the cast it's only Cupo, as a gangster-style pimp, who generates any emotional depth. On the other hand, just about everything about this film makes us squirm in our seats, which is an achievement all its own.

Rich Cline



American Mary

Facts and Figures

Genre: Horror/Suspense

Run time: 103 mins

In Theaters: Friday 11th January 2013

Distributed by: Xlrator Media

Production compaines: IndustryWorks Pictures, 430 Productions, Twisted Twins Productions, Evolution Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 56%
Fresh: 27 Rotten: 21

IMDB: 6.3 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Jen Soska, Sylvia Soska

Producer: John Curtis, Evan Tylor

Starring: as Mary Mason, Julia Maxwell as Tessa, Antonio Cupo as Billy, Tristan Risk as Beatrice, Paula Lindberg as Ruby Realgirl, Paul Anthony as Rat, Clay St. Thomas as Dr. Walsh, John Emmett Tracy as Detective Dolor, Twan Holliday as Lance Delgreggo, Nelson Wong as Dr. Black, Travis Watters as Mr. Realgirl, Marius Soska as Dr. Janusz, Sylvia Soska as Twin #1, Jen Soska as Twin #2

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

It's Only the End of the World Movie Review

It's Only the End of the World Movie Review

At just 27 years old, Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan has an almost overwhelming set of...

Hidden Figures Movie Review

Hidden Figures Movie Review

This film recounts such a great true story that we don't mind the fact that...

The Founder Movie Review

The Founder Movie Review

This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's....

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

Keanu Reeves picks up his supremely efficient hitman immediately where the 2015 original left him:...

Fences Movie Review

Fences Movie Review

After winning Tony Awards on Broadway, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis reteam for a film...

Advertisement
The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

A spin-off from 2014's awesome The Lego Movie, this raucously paced action-comedy is proof that...

The Space Between Us Movie Review

The Space Between Us Movie Review

While the premise of this movie makes it look like a sci-fi adventure, the truth...

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

On paper, the idea of a two-hour 40-minute German comedy may not seem very promising,...

Gold Movie Review

Gold Movie Review

Based on a true story, this lively and sometimes outrageous adventure is packed with twists...

Loving Movie Review

Loving Movie Review

While this film tackles a huge issue in the history of race relations in America,...

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

It's been 20 years since we last saw four freewheeling young junkies from Edinburgh spiral...

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Based on an astounding true story, this battlefield drama mixes warm emotion with intense action...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.