For a film which openly discusses the cruel edge of entertainment, a changing society and points out and tears down copious aspects of popular culture God Bless America is consistently on good form, managing to stay far enough away from feeling like a bitter and self serving lecture on the problems with the ‘civilised’ world by being consistently funny, often touching and at points down right saddening.
Frank (Joel Murray) is middle aged and tired with what he sees as the loss of consideration for others in the society around him. After he is given the diagnosis of inoperable brain cancer, loses his job and fully realises how estranged he has become from his ex wife and daughter he decides to kill himself.
He is sat in his living room, gun in mouth when a Sweet Sixteen style show comes on the TV. The ridiculous selfish teen and her pushover parents spark the idea that there are people who deserve to die more than he does. That and he has nothing to lose.
He meets Roxy (Tara Lynne Barr) and together they drive around killing those they deem as deserving it. All to a great soundtrack.
God Bless America is a strange take on a ‘on the road movie’. For every sweet moment between Frank and Roxy there is a violent and brutal killing. It really shouldn’t be funny but that doesn’t stop there being plenty of guilty laugh out loud moments and worryingly there will be a great deal of things the pair decide are terrible, potentially death worthy traits in people you will find yourself secretly agreeing with. Talking in cinemas being one, public high fives and anyone who wears crystals are among the long list.
Director: Bobcat Goldthwait
Cast: Joel Murray, Tara Lynne Barr, Melinda Page Hamilton, Mackenzie Brooke Smith, Rich McDonald
Runtime: 105 min
In cinemas: 4 July