The Fanatic

This is the kind of movie I wish didn’t even exist because what if you accidentally watch it? You’re a nice person. You don’t deserve that. Promise me right now that you’ll never watch this movie. Promise! It’s because I care.

Moose (John Travolta) is a rabid fan. He’s on the spectrum and not exactly sensitively portrayed; Travolta goes all in, with every tic he can fathom and a bad haircut to boot (in fact, a wig). But it’s about to get a whole lot worse.

One of his absolute favourites is horror star Hunter Dunbar (Devon Sawa). He spends money he doesn’t have on movie memorabilia and waits in line to have it signed. But when Dunbar cuts the autograph session short, Moose just about loses it. He feels there are certain entitlements between a star and his fan and when Dunbar isn’t exactly gracious about it, Moose spirals. I mean, you know you’re in a bad space when a paparazzo calls you a stalker. Or you should. But Moose just keeps escalating things, showing up at Dunbar’s house, scaling the fence onto his property even, and he doesn’t take it well when Dunbar is increasingly hostile (he’s got a young son at home). Of course, Dunbar just thinks Moose is another crazed fan. He doesn’t understand how much danger he’s in. And maybe neither does Moose.

Directed by Fred Durst (yeah, I know), the movie starts mediocre and only declines. There are a number of poor directing decisions, my least favourite probably the fantasy scenes in which Moose imagine the roles reversed, himself a generous and magnanimous movie star.

No, I’m lying. It does get worse than that. I withheld some stuff to avoid spoilers, but you’re not going to watch this thing anyway, right? You promised. Not even out of morbid curiosity should you watch. I mean, it’s not even laughably bad, or watchably bad. But I suspect the movie (or, its director) thinks it’s clever, which is intolerable and awkward and just makes the whole thing feel so much worse. We always knew, intellectually, that something had to be the worst thing on Netflix, but never before has the answer been so obvious, or definitive.

 

27 thoughts on “The Fanatic

  1. Orca Flotta

    Thank you Jay and Amanda for your sacrifices. You watched this shit so we don’t have to. But I’m gonna make it up to everybody and will watch *gulps* Rise of Skywalker on premiere day. 😮

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  2. Tom Being Tom

    I don’t get to watch nearly as many movies as I want to, so I steadfastly refuse to watch anything I don’t want to (even if Mrs C insists). The hard part is have the wisdom to discern the difference.

    (kind of my “serenity prayer” of entertainment 😉 )

    Thank you for taking the sacrifice on some of these so I don’t have to!

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  3. Robyn

    I’m surprised Travolta did such a bad job as a person on the spectrum. His late son, who died from hitting his head while having a seizure, was autistic. But I will heed your warning and steer clear.

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. Jay Post author

      I”m not sure it’s Travolta’s fault. The director really seemed to want to play it up, and focused a lot on his obsessive and violent tendencies. I think he was going more for shock value than anything, which feels kind of dirty and irresponsible.

      Liked by 1 person

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  4. ninvoid99

    Once I saw Fred Durst’s name involved, I knew this wasn’t going to be good. We NIN fans loathe Limp Bizkit and Fred Durst ever since Durst chose to pick a fight with Trent 20 years ago. Now, Trent is respected and revered and can still sell out venues. Durst just can’t even sell out a club let alone get any kind of respect except among his crowd of idiotic frat-boys and the MAGA gang.

    Liked by 1 person

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  5. J.

    Fuck sake! Fred Durst!? John Travolta!? Oh man… that is a recipe for the most awful bowl of wrong you’ve ever tasted.

    Travolta really needs another Pulp Fiction at this stage… he appears to be showing up in some utter trash.

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