Comedy / Crime / Drama
Comedy / Crime / Drama
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With all of his friends headed to a party on the last night of 1999, Austin takes an extra shift at the Quality Mart gas station and is forced to look down the barrel of what it means to graduate high school and face a future stuck in his middle of nowhere hometown. He's got one night to make his dreams come true, legal or not, and he's taking it..
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
Jun 19, 2022 at 12:00 AM
grade Movie Reviews
Like Clerks (1994), but Uninspired.
The title says it all. If you want to know what this movie is like, imagine Clerks (1994), but with way less interesting characters and even less humour. If your unfamiliar with Clerks, so the reference isn't helpful, I'll describe this movie in one sentence. This is your average coming of age story with characters you'll instantly forget, much like the movie.An intriguing plot can keep an audience engaged in a story, but usually it's the characters that catch and keep our attention. These characters are shallow and cliche, with dialogue and performances that won't leave an impression. They don't promote an emotional investment so it's difficult to care about them or their plights.It's not a bad movie, it's just uninspired. With the exception of some slightly clever plot elements, the script is emotionally and mentally numbing. There's little to no humour in the script and the dialogue is shallow with no profundities to be found. There's no clever or intellectual insights provided beyond things change after high school is over.It's a period piece set in the year 1999, and it's an average coming of age story with nothing new to say. What it does say, it says with a blasé script with banal dialogue. If you're feeling nostalgic or just want to watch a great coming of age tale set around that era, you'll find dozens of movies made in the 90's and 00's with more entertainment value. Many will actually reward your investment in time and energy by watching them.
Pretty disjointed and needed some polishing
Turbo Cola is an indie movie that clearly shows homage to older indie and coming of age movies. However, it also has interjections of a heist every so often through the movie. It's an awkward mash of genres that feels fairly thrown together at times. Had the movie stuck to one genre or the other, I feel that it could've been a lot better. Full spoilers ahead for the movie, so be warned.About 75% of the movie feels like a Clerks-esque indie film about friends trying to find their way in life just after high school. Jimmy wants to move in with Austin, Austin wants to move to New York, Mary Jane is going to College in New York, and so on. Everyone's talking about the New Year's Eve party that's happening, but due to different reasons no one ever stays too long and keeps coming back to the Quality Mart. All the while, there's the looming threat of Y2K that could seemingly end the world as they know it.The other 25% of the movie is a heist plot to steal money from the ATM in the Quality Mart that has very little bearing on the rest of the movie. This is where the main issues with the movie stem. The movie has a good flow through most of it with the character building between the cast, but every 20 or so minutes is a reminder of a heist that's happening that doesn't even pay off in the end.There's also several questionable choices made for the movie, such as: Why can't we hear Mindy over the phone during the first phone call, but can hear her and Swearsky in the other two phone calls? Why is the money just jammed into the ATM instead of neat stacks? Why are planes flying so close to the gas station that it shakes the entire building like an earthquake? Why are there people visiting a small Midwest town to see the town's "wrench drop", but don't know the town's mascot, which is also a wrench? Why does the cop come in to get coffee, leave, then come back just to ask for his change? Why is the "employee's only" bathroom absolutely covered in what appears to be feces? Why does Eric become completely lucid and all-knowing once he's been shot instead of giving that moment to one of the main cast? Most of these can be answered with "because exposition" but that's not really a good answer.Overall, the acting is good for an indie film, the cinematography is great, but the script feels like it was written by two different people, which is detrimental to the movie overall.
It's kind of OK for what it is
The film is based on a short play and you can tell - almost everything onscreen takes place in a small gas station store, the only other scenes take place just outside the small gas station store.It's not really a comedy and the lines that are clearly supposed to be funny just aren't funny. If I were feeling generous, I'd say it has the feel of 'Clerks' to it, but it's nowhere near as accomplished as that film.The USP here is that everything takes place in the hours leading up to midnight on Millennium NYE. The build up and heist plotting is actually really well done but the remaining 1hr 15m of the film never really lives up to it.The lead performance is pretty good (the rest of the cast less so) but you very much get the feeling you're watching actors act, rather than any of it coming across natural or believable.I've also read comments about how it 'accurately recreats the 1999 era', when the reality is that it's just a few older brands on the store shelves and some clothes (much of which is identical to what people wear today in any case).Not entirely sure how anyone would rate this 10/10 when it literally defines the term 'distinctly average'. Is it worth watching? Just about. My attention drifted numerous times but I did make it to the end.
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