The Almost Mercy movie is a very dark comedy with even darker social commentary. I was surprised to find this movie being listed in the horror genre.
Or maybe I just have a sick sense of humor.
Regardless, this movie had me laughing out loud at numerous points. The Almost Mercy movie is told from the perspective of a pair of snarky teens, Emily (Danielle Guldin) and Jackson (Jesse Dufault). There is nothing funny about attempted school shootings and perfected spree killings, yet this ground is trod with a twisted humor that actually works. Here we see the motivations of two would-be active shooters and can follow their formation into flowering progenitors of fusillades of lead.
Almost Mercy (2015) has somewhat the same feel as a film like Natural Born Killers, but without the name actors and at a much lower budget. The low budget feel gets it off to a rocky start, but, if you stick with it, points are made and it delivers. There is some really sharp writing in this movie.
Early in the film we see our two would-be killers deciding the merciful fate of an injured bird on the school playground. Later on, it is the morally injured adults in this pair’s world that may need a bit of mercy. Mercy killing, that is.
The twisted adults in this film are of arch stereotypes and you can figure out where they are going. Parents, law enforcement, clergy, and school officials are all portrayed as greedy, lustful, and corrupt cretins, out to use and abuse our not-so-innocent pair as well as probably most others in their crosshairs.
The snarky teen, Emily, turns out to be a can-do, anti-hero when Jackson freezes at the trigger. She is one among the recent trend of aggressive, avenging angels who are good with a quip, a gun, and look good doing it, even when covered in blood.
The Almost Mercy movie is funny in a sick and twisted way, but funny nonetheless. The dark humor is spot-on with its biting observations of the adult world and some of the creeps that people it. (Or is that people who creep around in it? Help me here, Emily!) Although its rough justice may be overkill in some instances, viewed from the teen perspective behind the sights of an assault rifle, rough justice is still in the realm of justice and degrees of difference may just be quibbles from a point of view.
It is from this point of view that Almost Mercy derives its attitude of what goes around, comes around, and they had it coming. Or to reduce Almost Mercy to a mere bumper sticker platitude, it’s the one that says, “Kill them all, let God sort them out.” Now just add a wink and a smiley face.