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Review: John Dies At The End

By JAKE MULLIGAN  |  February 20, 2013
2.5 2.5 Stars

Some movies find cult audiences. Director Don Coscarelli makes movies for cult audiences. So it's no shock that in his latest, Bill and Ted wannabes Dave (Chase Williamson) and John (Rob Mayes) get into a surreal excellent adventure of their own — one custom-made and pre-packaged for stoned midnight crowds. In a tale recounted to a nebbish journalist (Paul Giamatti, natch), they try out the new street drug "soy sauce," begin to "trip" across space and time, making references to New Jack City and Eyes Wide Shut along the way, and have philosophical talks with their golden retriever (and that's all before the end of the second act). The conspiracy-laden plot, told with fetishistic devotion in numerous expository conversations — including one with the dog — becomes so convoluted that it morphs into sci-fi satire. But with Coscarelli's kinetic camerawork and drugged-out, comic-book visuals, even the most confounding explanations are made palatable. The trip's a lot more satisfying than the destination.

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  Topics: Reviews , Movies, review, film
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