Thoroughbreds is a layered oddball with echos of Heathers. It's a stunning film that I can't believe is the debut of Cory Finley, as he writes and directs like someone who's been doing it for years. This film pokes holes in passive aggression and showcases what happens when we're truly honest with ourselves about our lives. Led by outstanding performances from Olivia Cooke and Anya Taylor-Joy, I'm truly shocked that Thoroughbreds didn't receive more attention when it came out.
Cooke and Taylor-Joy play Amanda and Lily, two old friends who rekindle their friendship in their late teens. Amanda doesn't feel feelings, and that makes her the perfect sponge for all of Lily's buried emotional problems. Together, they decide that the best course of action is to kill Lily's stepdad, Mark (Paul Sparks), and the best way to do that is to hire someone to do the deed while they're away. They hire hapless drug dealer Tim (Anton Yelchin, in his final role before his untimely death), who quickly realizes that they're serious. As the film progresses, Amanda and Lily's bond grows more dark and demented, to the point where Lily's feelings are starting to harden as well. I won't spoil it, but it's wild.
Thoroughbreds is another good film that was overshadowed by mainstream blockbusters and Hollywood remakes. Indie films have been the heart of cinema for decades, and they'll continue to be original, heartfelt, sometimes bizarre little productions that tell human stories. Go out of your way to see them, as they almost always surprise you. Start with Thoroughbreds. Trust me.