In the summer of 2001, Lionsgate distributed two brutal films about young adults carrying out murderous conspiracy plots against their friends. The first, Larry Clark’s Bully, premiered at the performance-focused Method Fest in mid-June, and was distributed in the U.S. theatrically the following month. In late-August, Tim Blake Nelson’s O (Othello) saw release, following a recent cycle of Shakespeare adaptations reimagined for contemporary young adult milieus (Romeo + Juliet , 10 Things I Hate About You , Get Over It! , etc.). Although Clark’s singularly vicious vision differs significantly from Nelson’s more conventional one, these back-to-back releases exhibit fascinating thematic and tonal convergences, most specifically in terms of their shared moral complexity.
Published as part of InRO Weekly — Volume 1, Issue 7.