Saturday, 5 December 2015

Review: Nurse

Year: 2014 (U.K Release 2015)
Director: Doug Aarniokoski
Screenplay: Doug Aarniokoski, David Loughery
Starring: Paz de la Huerta, Katrina Bowden, Corbin Bleu

Synopsis is here:

“Trash has given us an appetite for art.”
Infamous film critic Pauline Kael was the writer who was smart enough to inform us that “Movies are so rarely great art that if we cannot appreciate great trash we have very little reason to be interested in them.”

A part of me disagrees with this. For me, as ignorant as I am to combat Kael when talking about art (I’m still naive enough to believe that great art often lies in the eye of the beholder), there’s a canny kernel of truth that lies in the words of one her most well-known pieces of writing. We must sift through the trash to find the gems. We most search through crap to find a golden “truth”. Or something like that.

Unfortunately, Nurse is bog standard trash. C-movie garbage that strives to be B-movie gold. There’s not much to be found from it. The film looks it has the ingredients to be a piece of cult entertainment, but the elements aren’t stirred right. Its lead actress Paz de la Huerta has sought to sue the filmmakers for loss of earnings due to the film's poor quality. What should we make of that?

Such an act, screams significance. A film like Nurse that wishes to play on the exploitation curve only really needs to highlight de la Huetra’s own. Nurse never fully embraces its trashiness. Its body count and pert bottoms never wink hard enough at the audience. Paz de la Huerta’s should be embracing her inner Eva Green for her role as psychotic necrophiliac; Abby. Instead, she displaces her energies and sleepwalks drearily through scenes with none of the OTT mania that would make her part enjoyable to watch. There’s seems to be a distinct lack of energy in getting the best out of Katrina Bowden, who may not be a go to A-list actress, but has a lot more presence than what is shown here.

None of Nurse feels like the fault of the cast. The apathetic nature of the film seems to come from the source material. Nurse’s weak screenplay never feels subversive. If it did then at least it could make light of the film’s glaring discrepancies. Director Doug Aarniokoski; a veteran of television, does very little work on the pace of the script either. At 84 minutes, Nurse manages to ensure that it’s one of the more laborious chores of cinema I’ve had to watch this year.

With its blood, boob and bums, there may be one or two fans of Nurse who will have differing thoughts about Nurse. I however, found very little to enjoy from its anemic attempts at titillation. There’s little to no diamonds to be found within this bit of rough. It did however manage to get me to watch the film twice, to see if I missed something. Just in case. I guess that’s something.