I’ve always found rape/revenge films hard to watch. Maybe that’s why I keep on watching them. The rape part of the sub-genre sickens me, but the revenge part always brings a smile to my face. GET MY GUN is not only a rape/revenge film, but it is also a survivalist movie that pulls no punches and holds nothing back.
GET MY GUN is a film set up in chapters to easily show the passage of time, and it starts similarly to how it ends. I’m not sure if that would make the opening scene the prologue, but in any case, it sets the tone of the movie right away. At first, it seems as though a nun is pushing a small child on a swing. I quickly realized that the child is wearing a costume, and that this is a mother and her child playing in the park. I have a soft spot for exploitation and horror movies that take place on Halloween, so I’m really digging this already. A phone call is made while a pounding synth score drives home a sense of dread. The groundskeeper is kidnapped at gun point, tortured, and left for dead.
As the nun and another woman drive away from the scene of the crime, a large faux-grindhouse-style font of the title of the movie, “GET MY GUN” flashes across the screen. It’s been a while since I’ve seen that aesthetic. Sure, faux-grindhouse has become cliché, but I still love it, and this movie has already won my heart.
Similarly to IRREVERSIBLE, GET MY GUN starts at the end, and in Chapter One, the characters are introduced to us. Our main character Amanda (Kate Hoffman), who was the nun, works at a seedy motel trying to save money for college, and Rebecca (Christy Casey), the other female character from the beginning of the film, is a new employee learning the ropes. There’s lots of insight on what it takes to be a motel maid. They are both tough chicks who listen to punk rock, and their characters and relationship feels realistic. Their closeness comes naturally. Due to the fashion and vehicles used in GET MY GUN, it’s hard to tell if it takes place in modern times or in the 1980s, but I enjoy that non-chronology.
Unfortunately, this is where the rape part of the movie rears its ugly head. We’re introduced to a character only billed as The Man (William Joussett), who is also the groundskeeper from the beginning of the film. The girls see the man check into the motel every day, and joke about him being creepy. Thinking it’s funny, Rebecca puts the man’s room on Amanda’s list of rooms to clean. That’s when he puts a box cutter to Amanda’s throat and rapes her. The man comes off very much like Bill Moseley’s character Otis in THE DEVIL’S REJECTS. Thankfully, the rape scene isn’t very graphic, but it’s still hard to watch. Amanda’s face gets slashed, and she loses her job, but she keeps carrying on. She’s a tough cookie that won’t break.
Chapter Two flashes forward a few months, and shows us that Amanda is now in the late stages of pregnancy from the sexual assault. She finds a doctor, Catherine (Rosanne Rubino) in the personals, who is looking to adopt, and their first meeting is a dark and heavy twist on JUNO. There is some really great heartfelt character development in Chapter Two between Rebecca and Amanda, who are as close as sisters.
Things don’t seem quite right with Catherine, so Amanda checks out her credentials at the hospital where she says she works. Turns out it’s all a lie. Catherine becomes overbearing and starts stalking Amanda. Turns out Catherine is not only creepy, but completely psycho. Stupidly, Amanda keeps accepting gifts and money from Catherine. If there is one thing I know about a stalker, it’s that the longer you accept their gifts, the more they’re going to stalk you!
Amanda and Rebecca get sufficiently freaked out and go for a retreat in the woods. What could go wrong? Oh, crazy stalker bitch Catherine could…I don’t know, follow you and try to murder you, and cut out your unborn baby. Catherine is a murderous, relentless psychopath. Her character is obsessive and reminiscent of Jack Torrance in THE SHINING. Through a battle of shotguns, axes, and hunting knives, Amanda is able to escape.
Not really much to talk about in Chapter Three, since as I said, the movie starts as it ends, except now it focuses more on the savage revenge element, and that’s my favorite part.
GET MY GUN takes its cues from the past, but it’s also its own creature. The level of blood, gore, and brutality is perfect, and it’s balanced well with characters you care about, a smart script, and solid direction. It’s modern exploitation at it’s finest. If you would like to see a modern take on THRILLER: A CRUEL PICTURE, then GET MY GUN is for you!