Greetings from the Underground!
“A wrong movie makes you suffer for only 90 minutes. A wrong government makes you suffer for four years.” Those are the words that greet the viewer at the beginning of Get The Hell Out. This zombie action-comedy tells the tale of two young members of the Taiwan Parliament who find themselves fighting fellow members who have become infected with a virus that turns people into ravenous, ferocious zombies.
From the first frame to the end credits, Director I-Fan Wang’s feature never takes its foot off the gas of this wildly kinetic, action-packed, and hilariously gory ride. I was captivated by every scene in this film. There are sharply choreographed action sequences that are directed in a manner so you can actually see the action, over the top gore, wild visuals, and solid comedic performances.
One of my favorite sequences that contain all of these elements is a fight scene in a War Museum Room. All of the performers get a chance to show their fighting skills and the camera makes sure the audience sees it all. It is just one of many exhilarating moments. This script also drips with as much political satire as it does zombie entrails. It doesn’t get too deep but the topics addressed in the film could be applied to nearly any country’s political body. The film is not all action, there are plenty of character moments where you get to breathe.
Megan Lai plays Hsiung Ying-Ying, the headstrong young parliamentary member who lets her anger get the better of her. Her martial arts skills get her into trouble with her sexist rivals. I loved how her character didn’t falter in her mission and never backed down. Lai really gets into the role and I found her energy infectious. The other young parliamentary member, Wang You Wei, is played by Bruce Ho. Wang is the opposite of Ying-Ying. He is shy, easily manipulated and his feelings for Ying-Ying leave him misguided. I loved how Ho brought growth to the Wang character as the film went along. The chemistry between Ho and Lai was key in this film. Li Kuo-Chung is the villain of the film and Chung-Huang Wang brought the right balance of silly sinisterness to him. I don’t think there is one character, whether minor or major, that I did not enjoy.
Get The Hell Out has a huge amount of practical effects. I don’t think there is a single cast member who does not get drenched in blood at some point. The gore is so over the top that it feels like I-Fan Wang is being satirical in regards to the use of gore in films. There are even moments where it looks like a live action video game, complete with health bars and attack menus. The mixture of artistic character introductions combined with the outrageous costuming and the aforementioned gore makes this film a visual all-you-can-eat buffet.
This is definitely my type of film and exactly the type of film you would expect from the TIFF2020 Midnight Madness program. It was everything I had hoped for and wanted from a film like this. If you prefer more subdued, controlled, darker horror comedy then this may not be for you. But if you are looking for Nobuhiko Obayashi House meets Kung Fu Hustle with a Scott Pilgrim vs The World flare then Get The Hell Out is the right movie for you. I have no doubt it will be picked up for distribution and I cannot wait to add it to my collection.
Make sure to check out the movie’s Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/getthehelloutfilm