film reel image

film reel image

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Collection 2021 * * * Stars


"You close every time". No I'm not talking about stock brokers, I'm talking about debt collectors. You know those cretins on the landline looking to take ya. 

Anyway, 2021's Collection is just what it says it is. It's the ultimate debt collector movie or Boiler Room for payment pursuers. Filmed in Alabama of all places, Collection is the type of flick where almost everybody is desperate, swine-y, and foaming. Uh, you can feel it.

Collection starts off like something Paul Schrader would have directed right after he made The Card Counter (even though he didn't direct it). The grain here is self-destructive, calculated, and frosty. The characters that Collection puts in a confined space, are non-heroes, maybe anti-heroes, and lost souls.

Collection stars Alex Pettyfer (Brandon) and Mike Vogel (Ross). Pettyfer's Brandon is a dude that does bad things but somehow has a conscience. Vogel's Ross is a dude that does bad things and well, that's that. He's got "f u" written all over him. Pettyfer and Vogel are quite good as two buds who run a debt collection agency that isn't exactly admissible. Their scenes (with them or with other people) crackle. Their performances while long overdue, are rather nerve-ending (har har).

Minus a sort of murky romance between Brandon and a woman his cohorts are collecting millions from (where's the full courtship?), Collection intrigued me and that's what I'm looking for. Minus some glossed over plot details about Ross and Brandon's outer circle of outliers (that poor protege named Sean), Collection again intrigued me and that's what I'm looking for. 

Collection is a cold, nasty drama thriller that's compact (and possibly too compact but whatever). It gives the middle finger to anyone who's on the other end of that TELE (and I mean literally). With Collection, I dug the retro music soundtrack, the pace that's equal parts glacial and prompt, and the flashforward clip that's used to decent effect. "Collect called". 

Written by Jesse Burleson

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