One of the most underrated films of the year is Freaks (directed by Zach Lipovsky and Adam B. Stein). Not to be confused with Tod Browning’s 1932 cult classic, this sci-fi/thriller puts a refreshing spin on supernatural origin stories comparable to M. Night Shyamalan’s Unbreakable trilogy.
Drawing inspiration from Oscar darlings Room and Beasts of the Southern Wild, Freaks tells its story from the perspective of a sheltered kid, Chloe (Lexy Kolker). Cooped up inside her derelict home, Chloe is constantly curious about the outside world her father (Emile Hirsch) is adamant to keep her locked away from. The film offers glimpses of why reality may be dangerous to Chloe, but the film also wants us to be suspicious of family intentions. Freaks is a film full of clues that naturally unravels to reveal an intriguing story about hidden identities and survival. The ensemble (which also includes an empathetic performance by Bruce Dern) portray their unique roles very well, but Kolker specifically stands out as she holds her own alongside a seasoned cast.
After a brief theatrical run this past September, I fear the film is falling into obscurity. Thankfully, audiences will be able to discover the movie this month as Freaks arrives on VOD and on a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack on Tuesday, December 10 (it’s currently available on Digital HD). The combo pack includes the usual amount of extras (director’s commentary, the film’s teaser and full-length trailer), but the behind-the-scenes feature is a really interesting watch. It may be brief, but the sneak peek offers viewers an exclusive perspective of how the film-makers made their epic action movie in such tight confines and how they made the film an unforgettable experience for young Lexy Kolker. Interviews include adorable chats with Kolker, and character insights from stars Amanda Crew (HBO’s Silicon Valley) and Grace Park (CBS’ Hawaii Five-0).