After being suspended from the force, two overzealous cops venture
into the criminal underworld to get their proper compensation.
Dragged Across Concrete (2018)
Written and Directed by S. Craig Zahler
Starring Mel Gibson, Vince Vaughn, Tory Kittles,
Michael Jai White, Thomas Kretschmann, Jennifer
Carpenter, Laurie Holden, Don Johnson, Udo Kier
I have really been enjoying the films by S. Craig Zahler. He has written and directed both Bone Tomahawk and Brawl in Cell Block 99. He was also the screenwriter for Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich. He has shown in in all of his films to have an understanding of character while also delivering highly on the gore. It was like watching modern exploitation cinema mixed with an indie spirit. So, my anticipation for his next film was pretty high. Now that I’ve seen it, how does Dragged Across Concrete stand to the rest?
This is probably his most mature film to date. With over a 2.5-hour runtime and much more methodically pacing than his previous efforts, Dragged definitely requires quite a bit of patience from the viewer. Luckily, you won’t be too bored as the plot is engaging and the performances are stellar. Zahler gets a lot out with a very simple plot involving two suspended resorting to doing a crime to make money for their family. His pacing, much like his previous films, gives you time to care for these characters and hope everything works out for them in the end. Characters who are, like I said earlier, are backed by great performances. Gibson and Vaughn are great and play well off each other. It’s nice to see Vince Vaughn successfully spread his acting chops out from his usual comedy. There’re also fun turns from veterans like Don Johnson and Udo Kier. If I had one complaint, it’s that some of these fantastic actors get short changed due to the ensemble casting. For those wondering about the gore Zahler tends to put on full display by the end, don’t worry, it’s here. It takes longer to get to, and he cuts away more often, but he still isn’t afraid to show the good stuff.
I’m really looking forward to what we get next from S. Craig Zahler. He gives us films with characters to care for and violence to satiate the gorehound. I really enjoyed this film from him. While long and seemingly holding back more for mainstream audiences, this is still a noticeably more mature effort from him. It also features a very strong cast and his usual explosive ending. If you like his previous films, check this one out.