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The best performance in 'Kin' comes from its giant laser blaster (MOVIE REVIEW)

Phil on Film
Posted at 1:55 AM, Aug 31, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-31 11:28:12-04

Whenever things are in doubt during "Kin" -- which happens often -- out comes the movie's true star, a giant laser blaster. It obliterates a wall or vaporizes a thug and everyone in the scene poses for reaction shots.

I mean, it's a pretty cool gun. And boy, is it dangerous. It likely was accidentally pointed at the script, rendering it a bunch of stringy paper-ribbons. Apparently the producers taped the blown-up script back together, scrambling everything up so it was out of order and made even less sense than when it started.

At least the movie is different. There's never been a movie about an ex-con who brings his giant laser gun-toting 14-year-old brother with him on a road trip that leads them to a strip club owned by hardened thugs.

Then again, the movie proves that there's good reason there's never been a movie like this.

At least the actors, unlike the audience, appear to be having a good time. 

Jack Reynor, something of a low-rent facsimile of Chris Pratt, plays Elijah, a fun-loving criminal who happens to ruin the lives of everyone he meets.

Myles Truitt is Jimmy, Elijah's ray gun wielding teen bro -- he found it, as boys will do hidden inside a wall while looking for scrap copper to sell to meth heads -- who gets the pleasure of taking out his frustrations by destroying everything he aims at.

James Franco reprises his tattooed thug role from "Spring Breakers" as Taylor, who chases after Elijah and Jimmy, oblivious to the fact that his 9mm is no match for Elijah's laser blaster.

Zoe Kravitz plays Milly, a thoroughly modern stripper with a heart of... hair extensions who hops along for the ride.

Little in the film by directors Jonathan and Josh Baker makes much sense. That nearly plays to the movie's advantage. The plot is tied together so loosely that just about anything goes.

For instance, when a group of space soldier-looking thugs romps in like Master Chief in a "Halo" game, you just roll your eyes, nod and accept it. Likewise, when Milly pops in and out of the story without explanation, you just shake your head and say "whatever."

"Kin" is fun in a dumb, TNT-on-a-Saturday-morning half-watching sort of way. Franco's ability to ham it up is as entrancing as ever, and that gun sure does blow stuff up real good.

If you're looking for anything more out of your movie ticket dollar -- and you sure well should be -- you don't need to see this movie in the theater. Wait for it on cable or Netflix, when you can skip away when something more worthy of your attention comes along, blasting the movie away as though your remote were a giant laser gun.

RATING: 2 stars out of 4.

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