Premise: An interpolation of Hansel and Gretel in which two girls escape from prison and seek refuge with a Mexican nun. White Girl has been failed by the system and makes a living by posing as a prostitute and robbing johns. Cyclona is a serial killer who discovers the roots of her psychosis.
An early scene in Freeway II is a good indication of what’s in store. A teenage girl has been sentenced to twenty five years in prison. She is bulimic and purges into a toilet on her first night in a correctional facility as the title of the film swoops forward. Its supposed to be funny. It is.
You might have seen this film in the video store and dismissed it as a knock off. But Freeway II is written and directed by Matthew Bright of Freeway fame. It does not have the budget or slickness of the first film, probably because Oliver Stone is no longer on board as a producer, but less money can mean more freedom. Freeway II is significantly more daring than its predecessor and, as with certain John Waters films, the sheer audacity of Freeway II can be fun (and difficult) to watch.
While the audacity of the sequel is greater, its dramatic effect, the acting and the filmmaking are a cut below. That doesn’t make them bad. In fact, it is the quality of these aspects of the film gives the shock and camp elements such impact. Bright has a perfectly decent film about two girls who have been chewed up by society and are biting back. He could stop there, but then he throws in a child molesting, transvestite, cannibal nun. Shock added to a decent film has a much greater impact than a film based on shock because the shock is not a crutch; the film doesn’t have to be shocking so its more shocking when it is shocking.
How audacious is Freeway II? My guess is that it got it’s “R” rating for depicting explicit language, masturbation, lesbianism, glorification of eating disorders, parricide, drinking while driving, huffing spray paint while driving, crack use, ritualistic murder, necrophilia, racist speech, incest, vomiting, prostitution, a transvestite nun, too many beatings to count, cannibalism, child molestation, child pornography, sadomasochism, 18 people being murdered on screen and a camel toe in a pair tree.
The acting is spotty. The lack of budget sometimes shows in the supporting cast but Lyonne is good as the protagonist and Gallo is quite memorable as the nun/witch.
Freeway II is a limited film, but the limitations of the film give it an enjoyable, B-movie feel and give it the freedom to plummet to new depths.
The special features are minimal. Just the requisite trailer and cast and crew filmograohies.
- Film Overall: 6.5
- Direction: 6
- Story: 7
- Acting: 5
- Rewatchability: 8
- DVD Goodies: 1
- Number of times I paused the movie to do something else: 0
Number of times I was grossed out enough to look away from the screen 1
Number of little pigs in the fairly tell on which Brights next film is rumored to be based 3
- My High score in pinball on my computer as of this writing: 19,838,000