Combustible Celluloid
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With: Sam Rockwell, Phoebe Fox, Ben Schwartz, Peter Ferdindando, Peter Polycarpou, Simon Callow, Frances Barber, Amanda Donohoe, Al Weaver, Glenn Wrage, Robin Hellier, Pedro Lloyd Gardiner, Andre Flynn, Perry Jaques, Anton Saunders, Vic Waghorn, Paul Chan, Martin Muncaster, Jack Silver, Tom Tunney
Written by: Hadi Hajaig
Directed by: Hadi Hajaig
MPAA Rating: NR
Running Time: 100
Date: 08/24/2018

Blue Iguana (2018)

1 Star (out of 4)

Scrounge Lizards

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Yet another in a long series of tenth-rate Tarantino knockoffs, this wretched crime-comedy is confusing, ugly, and noisy, and despite Sam Rockwell's welcome presence, has no worthwhile characters.

In Blue Iguana, ex-cons Eddie (Sam Rockwell) and Paul (Ben Schwartz) are on parole and working at a sleazy diner in Brooklyn. In walks Katherine Rookwood (Phoebe Fox), a nerdy, stress-eating woman with a job offer. They are to collect a package in London, and will be paid if no one gets hurt.

Unfortunately, there is a casualty, and the plan grows more complex, leading up to an effort to steal a valuable diamond called the Blue Iguana. A nasty crime boss (Peter Polycarpou) and a mullet-wearing tough guy (Peter Ferdinando) also enter the picture. Can Eddie survive the job long enough to realize his crush on Katherine?

Written and directed by Hadi Hajaig, Blue Iguana starts instantly with fast-paced chatter that has no rhythm. It simply bulldozes through scenes, the camera roving almost randomly, as characters pick on each other and swear at each other. Rockwell has no character development, except to be like the chivalrous comic book characters he reads. More often than not, twittery music blares on the soundtrack, drowning out half of whatever dialogue is worth listening to.

Because of this, the plot also quickly gets lost, and it's unclear as to what is actually happening or why. However, thanks to the horrifying makeup and costuming, it is fairly easy to tell the bad guys from the good guys. The bad guys's hair and clothing is far worse than the good guys' — which isn't saying much.

At least Phoebe Fox gets a makeover in the movie's second half (and stops the constant cramming of food in her mouth). But with jokes about toilet paper and smelly warehouse hideouts, you'd almost assume that Hajaig wants us to think that this movie is a stinkbomb.

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