Movie review: Kaboom
"Kaboom" is the movie I've kind of always wanted Gregg Araki to make. It's not really wonderful, but it's completely, wonderfully ridiculous.
Some of Araki's favorite themes - blurred lines of sexuality, smug and angsty teenagers, apocalyptic overtones - all play out in a wild symphony that may or may not be satire.
Smith (Thomas Dekker) is an 18-year-old student at a sunny California college campus. He doesn't really define his sexuality, but he's got a thing for his surfer boy roommate Thor (Chris Zylka) and a regular hookup girl named London (Juno Temple).
His best friend since freshman year is Stella (Haley Bennett), who's in a relationship with a beautiful girl who is a practicing witch. Oh, and Smith has strange dreams about ritual murder that may or may not be coming true.
"Kaboom" is kind of like an R-rated episode of a teen drama like "Gossip Girl" filtered through "Twin Peaks."
Despite all its bed-hopping and nightmarish dreams of animal-masked cult members, it's also oddly cheerful - maybe some residue from Araki's last flick, the stoner comedy "Smiley Face."
Sure, it's kind of a hot mess. It's never easy to tell whether Araki is satirizing the melodrama or just wallowing in it.
But by the head-shaking conclusion, I can't help but give it a nod. See for yourself.
Opens Friday at the Gateway