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Mandy (2018) starring Nicolas Cage and Andrea Riseborough

The Children of the New Dawn

Red Miller (Nicolas Cage) and Mandy Bloom (Andrea Riseborough) are a couple who live in a remote house in the Shadow Mountains in 1983. They live a happy, if reclusive life until, one day, Jeremiah Sand (Linus Roache) - the leader of a cult known as the Children of the New Dawn - spots her walking down a mountain trail. He becomes fixated on her and persuades his lieutenant Brother Swan (Ned Dennehy) to go out and get her for him. Swan summons the help of a trio of crazed, demonic bikers knowns as the Black Skulls to help him in this endeavour.

Nicolas Cage in Mandy

The cultists and their biker helpers raid their home, tying and gagging Red with barbed wire and reducing Mandy to a hallucinogenic state via LSD and the venomous sting of a giant black wasp in order to make her susceptible to Jeremiah’s manipulations. When their ploy fails to work as planned, it instigates a cycle of violence and rage-filled vengeance.

Watch a trailer:

Mandy melds its huge range of influences into a singular cinematic experience

It’s The Last House on the Left, meets The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, meets Mad Max, meets Blade Runner, meets A Clockwork Orange, meets The Wicker Man, meets Kill Bill, meets Heavy Metal, meets Belladonna of Sadness, meets Alejandro Jodorowsky, meets Dario Argento, meets Lucio Fulci, meets David Lynch, meets prog rock, meets biker movies, meets Mastodon album covers, meets New Age religion, meets toxic masculinity, meets a batch of bad acid, meets Nicolas Cage throwing an epic shit fit, meets Linus Roache channelling pure vile seediness.

Mandy is a truly singular cinematic experience which is better described than dissected. It’s trippy, colourful, disturbing, gory, referential and hilarious… but also weirdly poignant and transcendent.

Runtime: 121 mins

Dir: Panos Cosmatos

Script: Panos Cosmatos, Aaron Stewart-Ahn

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Andrea Riseborough, Linus Roache, Ned Dennehy, Olwen Fouéré, Richard Brake, Bill Duke, Line Pillet

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

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