Bullets of Justice (2020)
Bullets of Justice (2020)

Genre: Horror Comedy Running Time: 1 hr. 16 min.

Release Date: October 15th, 2020 MPAA Rating: Not Rated

Director: Valeri Milev Actors: Timur Turisbekov, Doroteya Toleva, Yana Marinova, Semir Alkadi, Daniel Zlatkov, Neli Andonova, Dessy Slavova, Danny Trejo

 


 

Y

uri the half-pig, half-human hybrid, whose slimy snout matches the wanted poster held by assistant Nina (Yana Marinova), abruptly defecates in fear on the dirt of a war-torn street as bounty hunter Rob Justice (Timur Turisbekov) holds a gun to his head. After a swift execution, another “muzzle” – the nickname for the pig/human crossbreeds – this time a policeman-pig with a jetpack and dual machine guns, arrives to commence yet another altercation. Rob narrates, mid-slow-motion-explosion, how civilization devolved into the postapocalyptic wasteland that it is now. Years ago, during World War III, 70% of humans died, succumbing to an overthrow and conquering by the muzzles, whose origins are unknown – though the Americans blamed the Russians and the Russians blamed the Americans for abominable genetic experimentations.

Ultimately, Rob must lead the Human Resistance’s efforts to track down and kill the mother pig, an entity rumored to hold power over all muzzles. Despite this ludicrous premise, the characters are mostly sincere, and the locations are convincingly bleak – but the film is obviously something of a spoof of futuristic, survivalist horror (costuming and makeup remind of “Mad Max: Fury Road”). The editing emphasizes this through distracting cuts that hide the lack of real stunts, and through an extremely desaturated color scheme that obscures the extremely low-grade special effects. Nevertheless, there’s a consistency in the visuals, even if they struggle to impart anything other than schlock.

Rob’s adult sister Raksha (Doroteya Toleva) sports a full mustache; cyborgs are used as aides; a curiously existing teleporter is deemed inoperable; Rob can’t stop having obsessive visions of a male model (Semir Alkadi) with a more shapely rump than his own; Benedict Asshole is a muzzle whose face is arranged like his namesake (along with a chin shaped like testicles) and who speaks through flatulence; and Danny Trejo, looking very much like a holdover from one of his many other projects, makes an appearance as Rob’s father. The abrasive strangeness, the narrative inconsistencies, and the character incongruities are just a part of the purposeful nonsense, hoping to shock or poke fun at every turn. The humor in all of it may be evident, but so too are the occasionally overbearing grotesqueries.

For a film with a terribly generic title, “Bullets of Justice” boasts a wholly singular story. But that’s not always a good thing. Most prominent is the violence, which is so excessive and brutal that it’s routinely difficult to dismiss as intentionally funny. Still, there’s something morbidly humorous about the creativity of naked corpses used as cover or as full-body disguises, and there’s something moderately amusing about the lightning-quick, zombie-like onslaughts of weapon-wielding pig-monsters. But the chopped-up timeline, unexplained technological aberrations (including time travel), and frequent incestual acts threaten to disrupt the entertainment value of extravagant bloodletting, gratuitous nudity, and more traditional exploitation elements.

The shoddiness of the picture is part of the charm; the freakishness of the characters is diverting; and the mutant mayhem, musical gags, sexual jokes, and utter absurdity of the plot maintain interest. But it’s so incredibly odd that at times it’s difficult to tell what is supposed to be funny and what isn’t – such as when Rob spends an inordinate amount of time untying a knot on a grocery bag (with a severed head inside), or during a protracted dance-fight showdown. It’s ultimately like a cross between “Mandy,” “Nemesis,” “Zoolander,” “Overlord,” “Time Bandits,” and “Bruno” – eventually devolving into something less than a complete movie, as if two different narratives with opposing visions were stitched together for the sake of a feature-length runtime. But at least it’s undeniably unique and brimming with potential.

– Mike Massie

  • 5/10