Dashcam (2021)

I’m a fan of Giant Drag and Annie Hardy, the band’s lead vocalist, guitarist and songwriter. She’s known for the explicit lyrics in her songs and battling hecklers on stage, which really ties into how she acts in Dashcam, a movie that has her on-screen and livestreaming for most of the movie. As she deals with the coronavirus pandemic, she’s been riding around downtown Los Angeles and singing and rapping on her stream. She decides to go to London to visit her old bandmate Stretch and instantly enrages his girlfriend and makes his food delivery job a nightmare.

Then she steals his car and phone.

That’s when she meets Angela, an old woman followed by someone trying to kill her who offers plenty of money to get her out of town.

That’s when things go wrong.

Directed by Rob Savage (Host), who co-wrote the script with Gemma Hurley and Jed Shepherd (who wrote Host), this is based on Hardy’s real life, as Band Car was a show that she did where she improvised songs while she drove based on what those in the chat room sent.

So while I’m a fan of Hardy’s music, I am not a fan of her in this movie, which finds her playing a MAGA anti-vaxxer in the broadest way possible when she isn’t freestyle rapping about shoving things into orifices. It feels either too easy or — if earnest — too insipid and too uninspired — the simplest form of shock comedy that has nuance in a burst and is absolutely and utterly grating at 77 minutes ending with a cute idea of her rapping the credits making this feel like it will never end. I’m worried that I’m going to wake up in a Jacob’s Ladder situation and it’ll still be halfway done.

I will never get the idea of doing found footage or streaming movies in the place of a traditional narrative but I lost that battle long ago.

Dashcam is available in select theaters and VOD from Blumhouse and Momentum Pictures.

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