Last night I went to a screening for Kevin Smith’s latest movie Red State. I’m gonna say, right up front, from all the reviews I had seen prior. I had very little interest in the film. My main reason for going was to see Kevin Smith. Due to very unfortunate circumstances, I was unable to see him at comic-con a few years back. Things got off to a great start when we arrived at The Midland Theater in Kansas City. Why, you ask. You asked, trust me. The reason being Fred Phelps and his group of gay-bashing brethren were there picketing the movie. The main antagonist of the movie is based on Fred Phelps. It was glorious to see and it only gets better. We go inside, and we have seats maybe five rows back from the stage…awesome.
Kevin Smith then proceeds to come out and introduce his movie and point out that there are some special guests in the audience tonight. Megan Phelps(Fred Phelps grand-daughter) and 14 other WBC members. Smith invited them to review the movie after the screening and they accepted. This however never came to fruition as Smith, who ripped them before the movie started in the only way he can. A verbal assault that had everybody laughin’ their asses off. After the movie ended, Smith once again took to the stage and informed us that the Phelps family had left 15 minutes into the film deeming it “filthy”. But wait, it gets even better. After a few inane questions from the audience, two people(Libby and Josh Phelps) who left the WBC introduced themselves, and giddy as shit Kevin Smith invites them on-stage. From here on out the Q&A has now turned into an interview with these two former members as we get a glimpse into their lives while they lived in the church and how they’ve adjusted to being free from the family. It was just fascinating. Made the whole experience 100x better.
As for the movie, I enjoyed it. It’s far from a horror movie however. More like a thriller, with some humor mixed in extremely well. Michael Parks was fucking incredible as the Fred Phelps-like character. John Goodman almost stole the show with his performance. He really needs to work more. He’s awesome. You never know what’s going to happen and it has some surprising moments. I’d give it a very solid 4 out of 5.
I hope it does well when it’s officially released and I hope the official DVD release has footage from the KC show in the extras. It was easily the best part of the night. Oh and Gates BBQ after the show wasn’t too bad either…mmmmmmh barbecue.
*edit* Here’s some video from said event with the Phelps’
PS: Fuck Phelps and the WBC, gay people rock!
PPS: Line of the night for me was delivered by Kevin Smith when talking about how some people equate all Christians with the WBC and how he has to explain how he’s not one of those Christians. And I quote, “I’m one of those other Christians. The kind that likes to smoke weed and eat ass.”
And I’m out.