Directed By Lucky McKee
Starring: Angela Bettis, Jeremy Sisto, Ana Faris
So many film genres have become formula when it comes to big budgets and big stars in Hollywood. The horror genre has always had its greatest moments outside of the Hollywood formula. Movies like Last House on the Left and Texas Chainsaw Massacre broke ground in storytelling and disturbed audiences without big budgets or big names. In fact part of what made these movies as scary as they were was the low budget. The cheap film stock and bad lighting made the movies gritty and realistic, sometimes they could feel like news footage. Over the past few years the trend in horror has continued with the best films coming from left field. May is a perfect example of what can be done in the horror genre if we forget about the formulas and just simply tell a story.
May is the story of May Canady, a young woman who works for a veterinarian and who spends her spare time looking for the perfect man. May had a disturbed childhood as she suffered from a lazy eye and was mistreated by her parents and forced to wear an eye patch. The eye patch isolated her from having friends as she grew up. May’s mother gives her a doll in a glass case and tells her if she can’t find a friend the next best thing is to “make one”.
As a grown up May corrects the lazy eye with glasses but she has no idea how to communicate with people or share true love or friendship. She finally meets a young man played by Jeremy Sisto who she thinks is perfect. This relationship goes terribly wrong. After a strange relationship with her lesbian coworker she decides the only way to have the perfect companion is to make one out of parts she likes from other people.
This film by no means is what you would expect from typical horror fare. The true horror aspects of the film don’t really happen until a long way into the story. This move is a like a character study of a young woman who slowly loses her mind. Add in a lot of creepiness and a bizarre lesbian and you have the story of May.
Angela Bettis is quickly becoming a genre favorite and rightfully so. Before this film she played the lead role in a fairly good remake of the Brian DePalma/Stephen King classic Carrie. Her quirky mannerisms, her lazy eye (which was not a special effect!), her uneasy nervousness, and her stone calm cool finale are all amazing to watch.
Jeremy Sisto, who is becoming somewhat of a genre actor himself, is as usual excellent in this film. He doesn’t get as much depth of character or comedy in this film as he does in other projects but he adds something to the film nonetheless. Anna Faris plays Bettis’ strange lesbian coworker who you fear could wind up just as creepy as Bettis. This is a far cry from the silliness of Scary Movie but she also does a great job.
The film has a nice muted quality to the colors and they show really nicely on this DVD. There are some compression issues and some jittering at the edges of the screen. Not a bad transfer for a low budget film.
A Dolby digital mix is provided but it is pretty basic. The mix is reminiscent of the mix found on television show box sets. Nice and crisp but very basic most of the time.
The Bonus Features
There are two commentaries including the Director , Producer, Director of Photography, members of the cast, and even the craft services guy! They are great commentaries to listen to because you can tell all of these people are good friends and this film was a labor of love for them. There are great stories of how the film was made and different tricks they used to cover up how low the budget for the film was. That’s it, no making of, no featurettes, nothing else.
Overall (Not an Average) 7/10
The Move 10/10
The Video 6/10
The Audio 6/10
The Bonus Features 5/10