Maintenance

"Terrible"

Maintenance Review


Good news for all of you serial killers out there. There is finally a film for you! Rush out to your local DVD store and pick up a copy of Maintenance today. You won't regret it. Director-writer-cinematographer-editor Paulo Diaz (in Jerry Lewis's terminology a true "multi-hyphenate") offers all a budding mass murderer would ever want in a film -- unprovoked killings, efficient body disposal, and the kind of surly attitude toward mayhem that is the true mark of serial killer chic.

Diaz opens the film with this inflammatory anti-prisoner reentry statement: "In one year 108,580 prisoners were released from prison in 11 states in the United States. During the first year after their release, the ex-prisoners committed 1438 homicides, 1654 sexual assaults, 14,259 other assaults. Some of these ex-convicts may just be closer to you than you think..." What the hell is Diaz saying here? Is he channeling Himmler and calling for mass executions of the convicted? I don't know about the prisoners but somebody should definitely be given the chemical drip. I state my case below, your honor.

Maintenance hits the ground running. Diaz centers the film on Paul (Mark Masten) as he is being released from prison for unspecified crimes against humanity. He is picked up at the prison door by Jake (Justin Frumkes), a sleazy, smarmy go-getter who doesn't appear to know Paul at all but nevertheless zips him over to an apartment house he is managing and immediately offers him the job as house custodian. Paul skulks and cowers but immediately grabs the plunger and digs in.

Jake is managing the apartment building for his Dad and the dump is undergoing renovations with the exception of two floors that appear to be populated by single young women in robes and running suits. One of the women, newly arrived from Aurora, Illinois is Stephanie (Melissa DeBaca), who naively tells her mother on the phone, "Don't worry. I haven't met any psychos yet." That's what she thinks. She immediately takes a shine to Paul, who comes up to fix her air conditioner and boy is she a bad judge of character! Paul has just finished carving up a victim in his bathtub and dumping her remains into the dumpster because he had to unclog her toilet. And thus the pattern of the film begins: Paul spots a dame, he lets himself into her apartment, and lets his fingers do the killing. When Stephanie comes upon a dead woman in Paul's bathtub, she realizes that she made the wrong choice in a gentleman caller 'cause this guy is calling with a chain saw.

The actors tromp around the cheap rooms and hallways infused with the animal spirit of De Niro and for his rancid influence on these low rent clones De Niro should be ashamed and repent for what he has wrought upon the world. Diaz and screenwriter Paul Mroczka should also be ashamed for the lazy and cynical script writing. The poor victims don't stand a chance. None of them ever get an elevator on time (characters spend much of the running time feverishly pressing elevator buttons for lifts that never arrive), cellphones are left untended, and the doors are always unlocked. To quote Sweeney Todd, "They all deserve to die" -- if only for their stupidity.

In every sense of the word, Maintenance is an ugly film. Stylistically it is ugly -- the canted angles, the puke green tint to the scenes, the glowing whites throbbing like a tumor. Narratively it is ugly -- Paul is like a killer rat dumped in a maze of victims with no explanation or backstory for why he kills these women, he just kills and kills again. Temperamentally it is ugly -- Diaz's tone is hateful and unsympathetic; it is a bleak world of kill or be killed. The entire enterprise is unredeemable.

Repulsive, vile and nasty, Maintenance is the cinematic equivalent of vomit.

Toilet's overflowing again.



Maintenance

Facts and Figures

Run time: 60 mins

In Theaters: Friday 6th December 2002

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5

IMDB: 7.6 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Paulo Diaz

Producer: Alejandro Casinelli, Paulo Diaz, Gianfranco Solimano

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

Beauty And The Beast Movie Review

This remake of Disney's 1991 classic is remarkably faithful, using present-day digital animation effects to...

The Salesman Movie Review

The Salesman Movie Review

Iranian filmmaker Asghar Farhadi won his second Oscar with this astute drama which, like 2011's...

Get Out Movie Review

Get Out Movie Review

Leave it to a comedian to make one of the scariest movies in recent memory....

Personal Shopper Movie Review

Personal Shopper Movie Review

After winning a series of major awards for her role in Olivier Assayas' Clouds of...

Certain Women Movie Review

Certain Women Movie Review

In films like Wendy and Lucy and Meek's Cutoff, writer-director Kelly Reichardt has told sharply...

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

Kong: Skull Island Movie Review

After the success of 2014's Godzilla reboot, the Warner Bros monsters get their own franchise,...

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Viceroy's House Movie Review

Filmmaker Gurinder Chada (Bend It Like Beckham) draws on her own family history to explore...

Advertisement
Trespass Against Us Movie Review

Trespass Against Us Movie Review

With an extra dose of attitude and energy, this Irish comedy-drama hits us like a...

Logan Movie Review

Logan Movie Review

Hugh Jackman returns to his signature role one last time (so he says), reuniting with...

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

It's Only the End of the World Movie Review

It's Only the End of the World Movie Review

At just 27 years old, Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan has an almost overwhelming set of...

Hidden Figures Movie Review

Hidden Figures Movie Review

This film recounts such a great true story that we don't mind the fact that...

The Founder Movie Review

The Founder Movie Review

This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's....

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.