Spun (2002) • USA

If it doesn't bother you when a director blatantly rips off another movie, take this one for a spin. It's Requiem for a Dream for the methamphetamine crowd. Not as good, of course, but it's a fun ride. Lots of quick edits, lots of Oliver Stone weird, sweaty, extreme close-ups, and absolutely no substance. It's just a week, or so, in the life of a bunch of speed freaks. Nothing more.

Billy Corgan contributes some good stuff, via Djali Zwan to the soundtrack and gets in a quick cameo. There are lots of cameos alongside the ensemble cast. Leguizamo's a little over the top, and Mena Suvari seemed a little stretched, but all in all not too bad. This is a much better role for Brittany Murphy than Love and Other Disasters. It's a fine line between over-acting and acting like you're freakin' on speed, so I'm not going to complain.

Spun is also surprisingly explicit in a number of ways: Leguizamo's masturbation scene wearing nothing but a sock; the shot of a little turd splashing in the toilet while Sorvino takes a dump; a girl tied to a bed for pretty much the length of the movie, naked and spread eagle with gaffer's tape over her mouth and eyes forced to listen to a skipping CD the whole time.

There is no moral to the story. Heck, there really isn't any story. It's just one big buzz with events. I don't mind that it's a Requiem for a Dream clone in style, not substance. I would imagine this kind of physical film making via power-edits would be difficult to do, and I think this first time director did a credible job.


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