Full disclosure – I was a little drunk while watching “Mandy”. And I got drunker as it went on. But I’m so glad that I did.
Have you ever seen one element of a movie that made the movie what it was? An actor, the dialogue, the music, maybe? In “Mandy”, as simple as it seems, that element was the lighting. It cleverly used reds, blues, and purples to convey the good vs. evil vs. morally neutral actions of the characters.
Oh, it also had Nicolas Cage making this face.
Nic’s character is named “Red”, playing in nicely to the character development. Red and his lady, Mandy, live in a small mountain town. They have a gorgeous home and a quiet existence together. One day, while living their idyllic life and chit-chatting, Red wonders if they should move. Mandy says she’s happy where they are, and so they go on (FORESHADOWING-ISH). The LSD-swilling cult spots Mandy and subsequently capture, drug, and attempt to make her have sex with the leader. This intense scene makes you feel like you’re on LSD – Mandy’s voice gets distorted, the leader’s vision goes wonky, and the red and blue lights meet.
I applaud Mandy wholeheartedly. She’s obviously had some fucked-up shit go wrong in her life before, with the scar on her eye, but is living it pretty decently now. Mandy isn’t going to compromise sacrifice her well-being to placate this whacked out guy and give him what he wants (which is her). Is this her own way of initiating her demise? Perhaps. Or maybe she thought laughing at the guy with the little dick was the best way to get justice when she knew she was already doomed.
These culty fucks put her in a burlap sack and string her up in front of a bound and gagged Red, forced to witness his beloved burn alive.
Cue the insanity that is Nicolas Cage.
This is where it got more hazy for me because… wine. But, still being entranced, a pantsless Red freaks the fuck out in his bathroom and sets off to kill those culty fucks. He meets his friend who gives him some weapons and tells him where the fucks are hiding out. What follows is an awesomely bloody bunch of murders. At the end of the movie, we see Red with his post-murder smile plastered on his face, looking over to the passenger side of his car. He sees Mandy.
It’s a heartbreaking, visually amazing, intense, fucky, wild ride. There were moments I couldn’t unglue my eyes from the screen if I tried. Watch it now, because it kicks the ass of a lot of other revenge movies.