Modern life can often be summed up as a series of annoyances. Historically speaking, humanity is better off than it’s ever been, but trading saber-toothed tigers and cholera for texting drivers and restless leg syndrome still strikes some of us as less than ideal.
Enter Aiden (Josh Lawson), the beleaguered freelance photographer at the center of Charles de Lauzirika’s profoundly uneven Crave, who fantasizes about doling out brutal justice to those who fail his rather severe ethics test.
Sure, he’d eradicate the rapists and abusers, à la Death Wish‘s Paul Kersey, but in Aiden’s unhinged mind, pushy old ladies and chatty couples in an AA meeting are equally deserving of extreme prejudice. (Here’s a thought: perhaps plastering the walls of your apartment with crime scene photos isn’t the best antidote for a negative worldview.)
The real trouble, however, starts when our “protagonist” hooks up with his neighbor (Emma Lung) and grows increasingly unable to separate reality from his deranged imagination.
At least Kersey — or the more apt comparison, Falling Down‘s equally misguided “D-Fens” Foster — had some believable motivation for his vigilantism. Aiden’s merely an unlovable loser who may also be psychotic.
Ron Perlman gives us a few bright moments as Aiden’s laconic homicide detective buddy, Pete, but Lawson (here resembling a greasy Nathan Fillion) and writers Robert Lawton and de Lauzirika never give us a reason to sympathize with Aiden.
The guy fancies himself a hero, when in reality he’s the person constantly thinking of witty comebacks after the fact. Hey, Crave, the jerk store called, and they’re running out of you.