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Movie Reviews

‘Fried Barry’ proves over the top horror can still be an experience

An all out attack.

Fried Barry will remind long time horror fans of the 1980s. At some point, the genre began to take itself more seriously. Things got more interesting extreme, but they also seem to lose their sense of humor. The films were still good, but they seemed afraid to provide any other experience aside from fear and/or disgust. 

The South African science fiction horror movie follows the eponymous character (Gary Green) after a night of hard drugging. On the way home, he is abducted by aliens. This set in motion a series of wild adventures. 

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Fried Barry goes beyond the normal “fever dream” descriptor. The film is a non stop visceral assault that is akin to a drug binge. Things just keep moving forward and there seems to be no end in sight. A lot seems to be going on and little of it makes sense. 

It sounds like a disservice to writer-director Ryan Kruger, but it is high praise. The plot amounts to a series of events. The actual story lies in what Fried Barry makes audiences feel. It is aggressive high-energy fun that pulls you in. 

Green plays Barry as an almost primordial character. He looks bewildered and as if he is trying to take in everything he is experienced. His jerky movements are comical while his yelps of ecstasy are hilarious. By the end, it is impossible not to feel for the drug addict.

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Adding to the wild joy of Fried Barry is its pounding soundtrack. From bass heavy club tracks to heavy synth, the film is constantly trying to invade the personal space of anyone watching. In short, the film does not give you a chance to escape from it. 

Visually, the film is all over the place. There are quick edits, extreme close ups, and the serenity of a mental hospital. It is a chaotically confusing watch that is impossible to look away from.

Fried Barry premieres on Shudder May 7

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