Alpha Dog (Cassavetes, 2007)

Alpha Dog reeks of beer, bong water, and curse words, a bad trip of the worst kind of drug/morality hazed cinema. However, it’s most incriminating sin is a penchant for rehashing obvious and uninteresting material concerning rebellion, revenge, and cowardice. It’s incredibly ironic the actor with the least experience, pop star turned actor Mr. Justin Timberlake, crafts the best performance in a crowded and muddled mess of experienced actors slumming it to caddy material immersed in drugs, sex, and rap music. Director Nick Cassavetes pulls out all the visual stops – split screens, archival footage, and melodramatic mise-en-scene – but says nothing new about the influence of rap music/culture on the rich white youth and their awful parents. Alpha Dog isn’t only an inept character study, it’s a bad message film, one dependent on cliched genre moments trumped up as dangerous, transcending revelations about America’s wealthy youth and their obsession with power.- Watching The Hitcher remake (a dreadful and surprisingly lazy slasher film) prior to this was the only thing keeping Alpha Dog from being an F. I guess when you compare shit with smellier shit, something has to rise to the top. Both are dreck from the bottom of Hollywood’s pig sty.

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