Film Review: THE RISE AND FALL OF AN AMERICAN SCUMBAG (2018)

Film Review: THE RISE AND FALL OF AN AMERICAN SCUMBAG (2018)

Feb 25, 2018

The next chapter in Dakota Bailey’s string of degenerate character studies is here. This film even has a prequel-esque/origin story feel, letting us know that there is surely more to come from this up-and-coming writer/director.

If you’ve seen any of Bailey’s films in the past, you know what you’re getting into with this one. If you haven’t seen any of his stuff, this is a great place to start. This is easily his most polished and expensive looking film. Of course, he is a microbudget guy, so you need to expect a grimy no-budget feel that adds to the realistic aspect of the films.

As far as production value goes, you can probably see where we are going with this one. It’s a hell of a lot better. Bailey’s work has improved in all aspects of writing and cinematography. I like his use of lighting, episodic structure, and narration. While I think his previous film had a more effective use of shadow and close-up work, I still really like what this one has to offer in regard to story.

So while it is not overly gory or even violent for that matter, it is still a nice example of his work. While it is his easiest to watch, and hear for that matter, it isn’t quite as disturbing as his last film. I have a hard time ranking it; however, since most people haven’t seen all of his stuff, it wouldn’t matter anyway. What I can say is that this guy is becoming a voice in realistic exploitation filmmaking. I think he does things in his work reminiscent of the sleazy Italian sexploitation films of the seventies. I think he manages to tell short character driven stories without tons of over-the-top effects as well. Similar to the early work of films on the Sleaze Box label, this is probably a film that should appear in the pile of raunchy DVD’s that you don’t want you kids to see.

Trailer: