Preview - Killer Joe


  • Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe
  • Emile Hirsch and Juno Temple in Killer Joe.
  • Emile Hirsch and Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe

Friedkin courts controversy again
When a father and son hire a cop-cum-killer to take out their mother/wife for her life insurance but can’t come up with the down payment, Killer Joe sets his sights on their young sister and it isn’t long become things become very complicated indeed.

Killer Joe is the latest offering from the perennially active William Friedkin. Best known for directing 1973s The Exorcist, Friedkin has also been behind The French Connection, Cruising and 2006s Bug. He also has a habit for courting controversy with his films, previously angering the church and that gay community with his movies. And things haven’t changed much, with Killer Joe happily retaining an NC-17 rating in the states for ‘graphic disturbing content involving violence and sexuality, and a scene of brutality.’

Friedkin reteams here with writer Tracy Letts, who also penned the play that was turned into Bug. Killer Joe is another adaptation from his stage play which debuted in 1993 before touring the world to great acclaim. o earn Based on a play be the same dude who did bug.

The pair have attracted an interesting cast for Killer Joe, most notably in the form of Matthew McConaughey, who plays the title character. For an actor long associated with poor rom coms and shirtlessless, he’s earned some impressive notices in recent years and the early buzz for Joe is equally positive.

Emile Hirsch and Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe
Emile Hirsch and Matthew McConaughey in Killer JoeEnlarge Enlarge

Emile Hirch and Thomas Haden Church play the father and son while the sister is played by British actress Juno Temple, who has been turning up in all kinds of interesting roles since playing second fiddle to Saoirse Ronan in Atonement. The relationship between young Dottie and Joe is bound to be as twisted and complex as any Friedkin has conjured up in the past.

Killer Joe has been playing at festivals for a couple of months now, earning considerably praise as well as stories of mass walk-outs, particularly during one extended scene of violence. Courting controversy is one thing but there’s a solid chance that, behind the intimate violence and perverted relationships, Killer Joe could well be one to look out for.

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