Bug (2006 film)

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Bug
Bugposter2007.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by William Friedkin
Produced by Holly Wiersma
Kimberly C. Anderson
Malcolm Petal
Gary Huckabay
Michael Burns
Andreas Schardt
Screenplay by Tracy Letts
Based on Bug 
by Tracy Letts
Starring Ashley Judd
Michael Shannon
Lynn Collins
Brian F. O'Byrne
Harry Connick, Jr.
Music by Brian Tyler
Cinematography Michael Grady
Edited by Darrin Navarro
Production
company
L.I.F.T. Productions
DMK Mediafonds International
Inferno Distribution LLC
Distributed by Lionsgate
Release dates
  • May 19, 2006 (2006-05-19) (Cannes)
  • May 25, 2007 (2007-05-25)
Running time 102 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $4 million[1]
Box office $8,059,140[2]

Bug is a 2006 American psychological horror film directed by William Friedkin. It stars Ashley Judd, Michael Shannon and Harry Connick, Jr.. The screenplay by Tracy Letts is based on his 1996 play of the same name in which a woman holed up in a rural Oklahoma motel becomes involved with a paranoid man obsessed with conspiracy theories about bugs and the government. Bug debuted at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival before being purchased by Lions Gate Films, who released the film the following year in May 2007.

Friedkin and Letts similarly collaborated on the 2011 film Killer Joe.

Plot[edit]

Agnes White is a waitress living in a run-down motel in rural Oklahoma. Unable to move on from the disappearance of her son some years previously, she engages in drug and alcohol binges with her lesbian friend, R.C. Lately, she has been plagued by silent telephone calls that she believes are being made by her abusive ex-husband, Jerry Goss, who has recently been released from prison.

One night, R.C. introduces Agnes to Peter Evans, a drifter who says he is a recently discharged soldier. Agnes and Peter reach out to each other out of loneliness, and start a relationship. He convinces her that he was the subject of biological testing by the U.S. government while he was in the military, and says the anonymous phone calls she has been receiving were made by government agents in anticipation of his arrival.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Settings[edit]

Its set design was done by Franco-Giacomo Carbone, the production designer of films such as Hostel (2005) and Rocky Balboa (2006).

Most of the film's action occurs in a seedy motel room. The scenario has three interconnected rooms — a bathroom, a kitchenette and a living room. At one point in the film, the room has several dozen fly strips hanging from the ceiling. At another point the entire room is covered from floor to ceiling in tinfoil.[3] Friedkin has said the tinfoil was a nightmare to work with, because it had to be repaired constantly, and because it reflected everybody who was there, including the crew.[4]

Filming locations[edit]

Exteriors of the motel were filmed near Mammoth, California, and at Grace King High School[5] while studio interiors of the motel room were filmed on a soundstage in Metairie, Louisiana, near New Orleans.[6] A grocery store scene was shot at Migliore’s Grocery, and the lesbian bar scene was shot at Boomerang’s Bar, both located in New Sarpy, Louisiana.[7]

The story is supposed to take place in Oklahoma, however, the Sierra Nevada mountain range behind the motel belies the setting.

Music[edit]

Score
The film score was composed by Brian Tyler,[8] with additional music by Serj Tankian. Jay Faires was the music supervisor.

Soundtrack

Main article: Bug (2006 soundtrack)

The film's theme song is performed by Serj Tankian, the lead singer of the rock band System of a Down. "Learning to Drive" is performed by Scott Weiland, the lead singer of the rock band Stone Temple Pilots.

Additional artists are Sean and Sara Watkins (of Nickel Creek), Chainsaw Kittens, The Backsliders, Susan Tedeschi, Jerry Leiber, and The Coasters, Alvin Robinson, Los Tigres del Norte, Leon Russell and Brian Tyler.

The soundtrack was released in stores on May 22, 2007.[9]

Releases[edit]

The film is distributed by Lionsgate.

It made its world premiere in May 2006 in France in the Directors' Fortnight section at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival.[10]

The film received its U.S. premiere at Fantastic Fest on September 25, 2006, in Austin, Texas. It opened in the U.S. at 1,661 theaters on May 25, 2007. In its opening weekend it earned $3.24 million, and ranked as number four, of the most-seen films of the weekend, placed behind the threequels Pirates of the Caribbean 3, Shrek 3 and Spider-Man 3.[11]

It was released to theaters in France on February 21, 2007. It drew praise from most critics in France, but did not reach the top in the box office.[12] In its opening week in France, it ranked as number twenty of the most-visited films of the week, and earned $216,244 from sixty-six screens.[13][14]

It received a very limited United Kingdom release on November 9, 2007.[citation needed]

As of June 8,[when?] the film was in 331 theaters nationwide.[clarification needed]

Marketing[edit]

Friedkin has said that the film would have been flagged, in the 1960s or 1970s, as a horror film,[15] but he insists it is no such thing.[16] He told ComingSoon.net that "There were all sorts of people who looked at Bug, (including magazine people like Fangoria,) and they called it a horror film," he said. The horror connection "came from a lot of sources."[17] Friedkin claims that Bug is "in many ways, a black comedy love story.[15] He stated in an interview, that "It's not a genre film, but marketing works in mysterious ways. They have to find a genre for it. 'This is a comedy. This is a melodrama. This is a love story. This is a horror film. This is an adventure film.' Bug doesn't fit easily into any of those categories."[17]

Home media[edit]

Bug was released on DVD.[18] It was also available on HD DVD as a German exclusive, and has subsequently been released on Blu-ray Disc in Germany as well.[citation needed] A North American Blu-ray Disc release never materialized.

Reception[edit]

The film received mixed reviews from critics; at Rotten Tomatoes, a review aggregator, it has a 61% "Fresh" overall approval out of 131 reviews. The consensus states: "Disappointing resolution aside, Bug uses its claustrophobic setting and cinéma vérité camerawork to tense, impressive effect."[19] Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 62 out of 100, indicating "generally favorable reviews" based on 29 reviews.[20]

On May 22, 2006, critic Roger Ebert wrote, "The film has caused a stir at Cannes, not least because its stars, Ashley Judd and Michael Shannon, achieve a kind of manic intensity that’s frightening not just in itself but because you fear for the actors."[21] Judd was praised for her performance by critic Dennis Dermody from Paper, who wrote: "Ashley Judd gives a raw, shattering Oscar-worthy performance." Stephen Schaeffer from the Boston Herald called it "one of the most disturbing horror movies imaginable."[22] The film received generally positive reviews from the U.K. media, receiving three out of five in The Guardian.[citation needed] It was also critic Mark Kermode's film of the week on BBC Radio 5 Live.[citation needed]. Despite the praise, CinemaScore gave it rating of F based on surveys from general audiences.[23]

Awards[edit]

The film received an award at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival from the International Federation of Film Critics in the Director's Fortnight section.

Ashley Judd was nominated for a Saturn Award for Best Actress.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bug Box Office Data". The Numbers. Nash Information Services. Retrieved October 8, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Bug (2007)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved July 5, 2011. 
  3. ^ "It's All Lectrosonics Wireless for William Friedkin's New Thriller "Bug"". Lectrosonics. 2006. 
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ Pirates and Paintings | NOLA.com. Blog.nola.com (2007-06-07). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  6. ^ William Friedkin Talks About "Bug"
  7. ^ Allen Lottinger, Jr. Hollywood South, St. Charles Herald-Guide, August 6, 2005
  8. ^ SoundtrackNet : Bug (score). Soundtrack (2007-05-21). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  9. ^ SoundtrackNet : Bug Soundtrack. Soundtrack.net (2007-05-22). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  10. ^ "FIPRESCI – Festival Reports – Cannes 2006". Fipresci. 2006. 
  11. ^ Kadison, Dan. (2007-05-28) 'Pirates' Grabs Box-Office Booty To Wreck 'Shrek'. NYPOST.com. Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  12. ^ Bug – La revue de presse. Cinemovies.fr (2010-01-22). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  13. ^ Box-office : Box-office France. Allocine.fr (2008-12-19). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  14. ^ Bug, Box Office Mojo, Dec. 5, 2010
  15. ^ a b The Eternal Struggle: From The Exorcist to Bug William Freidkin's movies examine people battling real and symbolic forces of evil | Baltimore City Paper. Citypaper.com. Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  16. ^ William Friedkin is bugged | Dallas-Fort Worth Entertainment News and Events | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News. Dallasnews.com (2007-05-24). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  17. ^ a b EXCL: Bug Director William Friedkin. ComingSoon.net. Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  18. ^ Bug on DVD. Dvdtown.com (2007-07-11). Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  19. ^ Bug at Rotten Tomatoes
  20. ^ "Bug (2007): Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 2008-01-05. 
  21. ^ Cannes #4: 'Bug' by Friedkin :: rogerebert.com :: Cannes Film Festival. Rogerebert.suntimes.com. Retrieved on 2010-12-17.
  22. ^ "Bug". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 2011-09-08. 
  23. ^ Why CinemaScore Matters for Box Office. The Hollywood Reporter (2011-08-19). Retrieved on 2014-05-22.

External links[edit]