J.B. Spins

Jazz, film, and improvised culture.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Vincent N Roxxy: Star-Crossed Love Gets Violent

These kids are probably perfect for each other. He’s an ex-con with anger management issues. She’s on the run from gangster who thinks she owes him money. What could go wrong, except everything in Gary Michael Schultz’s Vincent N Roxxy (trailer here), which opens this Friday in select cities.

Vincent (is anyone grown-up enough to have a surname in the movies anymore?) was driving by when he saw Roxxy being attacked by a thug working for “Suga,” the local loan-sharking drug dealer. Actually, he didn’t just happen to be in the neighborhood, but that’s a detail to worry about later. Long story short, he hits the dude with his car and she hits him with a brick. While making their getaway, the recently released Vincent invites Roxxy to come crash at his family farm. Initially, she passes, but a few weeks later, she shows up looking to lay low.

Naturally, Roxxy immediately accepts a job working with Kate, the trampy girlfriend of Vincent’s brother JC at a rough & tumble roadhouse. It’s the perfect place to be, if you’re looking for trouble. Kate’s knuckle-dragging ex has plenty of trouble to offer the Brothers X. Presumably, those other bad guys are also still out there looking for them too.

There is really no compelling reason for this film’s existence, but at least Schultz earns credit for an ending that somewhat upends expectations, while delivering some grindhouse style payback. If only there were more of that grunginess earlier in the film. Nevertheless, it should be stipulated Emile Hirsch and Zoë Kravitz have a surprisingly pleasant rapport as the country mouse-city mouse lovers. It is also somewhat refreshing to see their courtship last well past the first act before they inevitably go all in. Plus, Emory Cohen has volatile Ben Foster kind of thing going on as JC that works rather well for the film. Unfortunately, the villains are just your basic redneck creeps and street gang sociopaths.

This film isn’t terrible, but it will only be remembered by those who see it, for the brutal but undeniably cathartic final sequence. Still, that is more than many films can boast. Mostly just okay, Vincent N Roxxy releases this Friday (6/2) in limited markets and on VOD platforms, including iTunes.

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