Rebecca and Catherine are two young Catholic school girls who’ve been sent out to do mission work selling bibles door to door. They end up being sent to a small town out in the middle of nowhere, where the town’s folk are anything but welcoming. Things go from bad to worse when they end up on the door step of Lobo’s where him and his gang proceed to viciously attack and violate both girls. Days later, Catherine wakes up in a hospital and throws her religious beliefs out the door and goes back to get some revenge.
Good exploitation cinema seems to be a dying breed these days. Either it's being handled by people who have the resources to make a good film, but don't know how to properly handle the material. Or, for some reason, a movie comes up short and doesn't have that punch, that quality that those sleazy exploitation films of yesteryear had. I saw the trailer for "Run! Bitch Run!" and I'll admit I was excited about it but equally skeptical in these neo-grindhouse fad days. Thankfully the kind folks at Breaking Glass Pictures sent me a screener to review and my skepticism for the movie has now been replaced with optimism for the genre.
Yes, "Run! Bitch Run!" isn't breaking any new grounds in exploitation or rape-revenge films. The story revolves around two Catholic school girls, Catherine and Rebecca, are having to do mission work and sell bibles door to door. They end up in a town that's in the middle of nowhere that seems to be populated by some of the seediest people. Unfortunately, Catherine and Rebecca knock on the door of the wrong house and become captives to a group of deranged drug addicts. Catherine becomes the lucky one and is left for dead in the woods after being brutally raped. She wakes up in a hospital, and the only thing she has on her mind is revenge.
Like I said, a typical setup and the influences to both the characters and the story are pretty obvious. Nothing wrong with that. In fact I applaud this movie for not trying to "reinvent the wheel," rather they try to make it right. And they do. Unlike other modern films that actually have you rooting for the villains, "Run! Bitch Run!" has the characters setup right. The psycho-nut drug fiends that torture the innocent Catherine and Rebecca are the epitome of scum, especially the character Marla. Once you see these characters and know their roles, you cannot help but wait until they get what's coming to them. This will inevitably make it that much easier to cheer on Catherine when she begins her bloody rampage. However, to give credit where credit is due, Cheryl Lyone who plays as Catherine really helps to sell the character. You believe her Catholic-based innocents and you can see her switch mentally to a vigilante (of sorts).
Some people might be disappointed to find out though that this is not a gore or bloody movie. There is blood spilled in the revenge sequences, hell there is even a decapitation, but really the movie keeps things to a minimum. Which I'm actually glad they did. Sure gore is fun, and watching tons of blood fly off the bodies from people getting hit with shotgun blasts would be a hoot. But the fact that the movie kept the blood to a reasonable level helps keep the movie more reality based, and doesn't have it go into a cheesy-schlock direction. This isn't a Saturday night popcorn flick afterall, this is a down 'n dirty grimy sleaze flick. It's suppose to be gritty and nasty and not exactly a pleasent or a "fun" watch, in the strictest of terms. The movie helps to sell the gritty and nastiness as a majority of the women, not just our two protagonists are beaten, violated, and degraded.
I'm sure this review is hyping up the movie and making it sound like exploitation-perfection. Which isn't entirely true. Yes, I am hyping up the movie because I had blast watching it and I think this is one people need to keep an eye on. This is a low-budget movie though, so with that it does have its faults of cheesy moments and spotty performances from some of the minor characters in the film. Overall though, "Run! Bitch Run!" is exploitation done right. You've got: sex, drugs, nudity, sleaze, necrophilia, a gang of scum bags, innocent girls, rape, revenge, and a bleak outcome. It has a well told and well executed story, with some good performances from our main actors, and in general is a movie that is made very well. With Vicious Circle Films and Breaking Glass Pictures releasing movies like "Hanger" and "Run! Bitch Run!” there maybe hope for exploitation cinema and I'm looking forward to what else they'll be releasing.