Uncompromisingly hilarious, Burning Palms is an edgy comedy with a lot of black humor. It pushes the boundaries and it’s a perfect movie to play to your uptight friends. Mostly because the script is intelligent and acting is spot-on. There’s a strange Alan Ball (American Beauty, Nothing Is Private, Six Feet Under) vibe present here although I can’t quite place it. It could be the presence of Peter Macdissi, but I’m not really sure. Comprised of five stories, five very weird, but true stories, it deals with many issues present in modern society. We will be exploring different subjects like jealousy, phobias, paranoias and other fun mental conditions. But most of all, this is an exploration of different characters with a funny twist. Also, this is not some new age, indie crap about love, loneliness and other “feelings” but an honest and brutal movie that is so fun to watch.
After the first story you just can’t wait to see what’s going to be the next one and what weird shit and taboo will be broken. The trouble with this type of storytelling is that we expect that the stories get weirder and wilder as the movie progresses. At the same time we’re trying to pick our favorite and least favorite story, making the movie a bit torn and inconsistent. However, this is just a minor flaw in an otherwise refreshing and creative movie. A movie that really doesn’t care about political correctness. Once you’ve seen Burning Palms, it will become one of those movies you will fondly remember. Or recommend when similar situations pop up in your own life.
One of the first things you’ll notice about this movie is its sleek visual style. Don’t think that this is some independent production with a shaky camera and grainy image. The production values were great and the cinematography was just right. The same goes for the cast of Burning Palms with a lot of familiar faces. I especially liked Rosamund Pike and Dylan McDermott in the first story. Speaking of which, I will skip the usual synopsis as I don’t want to spoil anything for you.
Finally, the issues explored here are indeed so called “first-world-problems”. I for one usually don’t like to watch rich people obsess over stupid shit while most of us are just trying to make ends meet. However, it’s smart to broaden your views and analyze different lives, problems and other shit. I keep wanting to avoid the title of the famous Mexican telenovela The Rich Cry Too, but apparently that’s impossible. And this goes just for some of the stories, the rest of them are pretty broad and relatable.