Mena Suvari (American Beauty) unforgettably stars as Brandi, a hard-partying, overworked nursing assistant in this delicious, darkly humorous psychological thriller from director Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator, From Beyond). B... more »randi accidentally steers her car into a homeless man, movingly played by Stephen Rea (The Crying Game), sending him flying through the windshield. Not wanting to jeopardize a possible job promotion, she chooses not to get him medical help, leaving him clinging to life in her garage. But soon her psyche begins to unravel as captor and captive are pitted against each other in a bloody...even outrageous battle for survival. Director Stuart Gordon delivers what Variety called "ingeniously nasty and often shockingly funny" entertainment.« less
George K. from COLCHESTER, CT Reviewed on 9/11/2013...
Very entertaining is a grisly way. The story is inspired by a true-life crime but has a "happy" ending to make it audience-friendly.
Mena Suvari and Stephen Rea are as convincing as the extreme script will allow them to be. Lots of blood, lots of heartless cruelty, lots of self-centered ugliness. Another reviewer appropriately channeled the grindhouse genre.
2 of 2 member(s) found this review helpful.
Stuck in the "It's All About Me" Mindset.
G. Merritt | Boulder, CO | 06/13/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I was stuck on this B movie from its opening scenes. Inspired by a true story (rather than a sick joke), Stuck is a 2008 black comedy about a Providence nurse, Brandi (Mena Suvari of American Beauty) who, high on cocktails and Ecstasy and while talking on her cellphone, hits a newly homeless guy, Tom (Stephen Rea of The Crying Game), who then remains stuck in the broken windshield of the Brandi's car for days. While Tom attempts to survive, Nurse Brandi avoids calling the police and refuses to render medical assistance. Instead, she pops more Ecstasy, has sex with her boyfriend, and wonders how the accident might affect her promotion at the retirement home where she works. This is not good, she figures. So instead of saving Tom, she pleads, "Whay are you doing this to me," and then whacks him with a board whenever he regains consciousness, hoping that he'll just die already so she can dispose of his body. Re-Animator Stuart Gordon's satirical film is ultimately about an American culture that has become so self-absorbed that it is easier to refuse assistance to a dying person than to inconvenience oneself. Brandi's refusal to believe the accident was her fault, instead blaming the homeless guy for the sticky situation, works as priceless comedy. Stuck is rich in sex, drugs, horror, and graphic grindhouse gore.
Stranger than Fiction!
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 11/15/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"STUCK is one of those films that creeps up on you, teases you into thinking a comedy is in the making, then slowly reveals itself as what seems to be an exposé of our current manner of getting through life, of competing in the workplace, and of self absorption to the point of endangering those around us. The fact that the film is based on a true story as adapted by director Stuart Gordon and transformed into a bitingly satirical screenplay by John Strysik increases the impact of this well-crafted little low budget film. Watch it once for the gritty content of the story, then watch it again to appreciate all of the very dark (and very pointed!) humor in what at first appears to be a grisly tale.
Brandi Boski (Mena Suvari) works as a Nurse's Aid in a nursing home of senile elderly patients, giving some of the finest care for those entrusted to her talents. Brandi's compassionate work is noted by the supervisor Peterson (Carolyn Purdy-Gordon) who manages to trick Brandi into an even heavier work schedule by suggesting a raise in position. Excited about her possible promotion Brandi and her working partner Tanya (Rukiya Bernard) celebrate that evening with Brandi's boyfriend/drug supplier Rashid (Russell Hornsby) who gives Brandi a pill of Ecstasy and the mixture of the drug with the alcohol creates a mess of Brandi's mind.
The parallel story involves one jobless Thomas Bardo (Stephen Rea) who lives in a tenement, is evicted because of past due rent, and becomes a street person, treated with cold (but satirical) mechanical responses at the Department of Unemployment. Left to sleep in the park he is befriended by another homeless person, given a shopping cart, and makes his way toward a midnight mission.
Brandi cum altered thought processes drives home, hits Thomas who comes sailing through her windshield badly injured, and out of fear and distress Brandi merely takes the 'stuck' Thomas home to park him in her garage, knowing that her boyfriend Rashid will help her. Thomas is conscious, unable to climb out of the glass of the crushed windshield and begs for help. How the stranded and injured Thomas is treated by the desperate but self-centered Brandi, by the frightened but macho Rashid, and by neighbors who fear intervention because of reporting an incident that would encourage police intervention and threaten their deportation as illegal immigrants results in an ending that shows how 'justice' can prevail!
The cast is first rate - especially Rea, Suvari, Hornsby and Bernard. The direction is tight and maintains credible characters in incredible situations and holds the audience attention every moment. This is a fine example of how a low budget film, in the hands of pros, can be more successful that the big budget, less thoughtful movies that crowd our marquis. Grady Harp, November 08"
Stuck on poverty (3.5 stars) - Stuck (Gordon)
Pablo Martin Podhorzer | Buenos Aires, Argentina | 09/13/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"So, this is what is life in America? Joking aside, this is a terrific look at the consequences of the "culture of success" permeating the United States. Which is in fact no success at all, but mostly submission to bosses, bureaucracy and money. It is the law of the jungle in "Stuck", but when Stephen Rea, a victim of downsizing, gets stuck in Mena Suvari's windshield he seems still incapable to understand that his society no longer functions, and waits for her to get help. That never comes. I don't see this film as a black comedy but as an indictment, a suspenseful look at the effects of a socially inept landscape in some individuals fighting to maintain their status in the ranks of the low class (they are... stuck!). More insight and this could have been masterful. As it is, it constitutes a very enjoyable action film."
A poignant journey that gets stuck pretty deep in absurdity
C. Christopher Blackshere | I am the devil's reject | 02/23/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The setup for Stuck seems pretty ridiculous, but it's actually based on a true story. After a night of partying, the young Brandi (Mena Suvari) commits a hit and run on a homeless man (Stephen Rea). Such a tragic mistake, and here's the horrible kicker--the guy is wedged tightly in the windshield of her car! Quite a crazy predicament, and Brandi is of course stricken with panic.
So what does she do? Drives home, drops some more ecstasy and has sex with her boyfriend. Just leaves the poor guy bleeding to death in her garage? Well, I suppose we all deal with stress in different ways.
I can appreciate the dark comedy of this story and realize it might be a statement about the current mindset that seems to be prevalent in our culture. People having a reckless pursuit of personal happiness along with a selfish disregard for responsibility. It also plays other stereotypes out to comical effect.
But the humor eventually goes from being subtle (a cop unaware of the car passing behind him with a bloody passenger on the hood?) to extremely silly (death by a ball point pen?) (ah geez). Oh well.
Overall, this was somewhat entertaining and original. This movie includes profanity, violence, drug use, and nudity. Written and directed by Stuart Gordon."
Sometimes you're the windshield, sometimes you're Tom Bardo.
Church of The Flaming Sword | 01/25/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Stuart Gordon, who has directed such horror classics such as Re-Animator and From Beyond, has given us a different form of horror in the form of Stuck. Instead of drawing upon such sources as Lovecraft, here he plumbs something far scarier - the 6 o'clock news. Some may claim that Stuck is more of a dark comedy than horror, to that I say horror is a matter of perspective. If you don't believe me, try to look at things from Bardo's side. Call me kooky if I find being homeless, getting hit by a car on the way to a homeless shelter, and then being at mercy of someone who rather dispose of me than to allow me medical treatment because doing the right thing would put that person in jail for a long time scary.
The story for this movie was based on the real life hit-and-run incident in which Texas woman Chante Mallard fatally drove into homeless man Gregory Biggs while she was according to some sources intoxicated and under the influence of drugs. After the incident, Mallard drove home with a critically injured Biggs still lodged firmly in her windshield. Instead of notifying the authorities or seeking medical attention for Biggs, Mallard wasted precious hours trying to cover the incident up with him still bleeding, broken, and in severe agony in her windshield. According to police reports, had he been treated immediately, he would have survived.
This is a fictionalized version of that horrific event that takes liberties with certain events and surface details, but does manage to leave intact the core message that should have been made perfectly clear by that tragedy - be responsible. The slightly miscast slender white actress Mena Suvari plays up and coming nurse Brandi Boski, the role inspired by Mallard - who is a heavyset black woman. Very talented Irish actor Stephen Rea is great as the down on his luck Tom Bardo, who is based on Biggs. Celebrating a promotion she believes she has all sewn up, Brandi takes a hit of ecstasy at a party before she very foolishly drives home. That's when (you guessed it), she runs into Tom both literally and figuratively.
While nobody really knows what happened at the Mallard residence other than apathy and callousness, Stuck gives us an entertaining speculation. We see how Brandi at the start of the film seems like a responsible and dependable young woman. However, once her path crosses with that of Tom's, we see her as someone whose potential for evil is possibly limitless. She does things such as not acting upon her pangs of conscience and blackmailing her drug dealing boyfriend into helping her. What is realling disgusting is how she blames Tom for her life spiralling out of control by telling him things like "It's not my fault. Why didn't you watch where you were going?" What a heartless woman to attempt to steal the role of victim.
There are those out there that may think this movie is in poor taste by trivializing the incident. Far from it. The true poor taste is in the Chante Mallards of the world who commit these crimes and try to cover them up while the Gregory Biggses suffer. All that the people that made the film are trying to do is comment on the irresponsibility of those responsible and to try to give a little dignity to the victim - the real victim. Don't let Chante Mallard's crocodile tears tell you otherwise.