Emma Watson may be breaking hearts in Greta Gerwig’s Oscar-nominated “Little Women,” but there’s no doubt that Daniel Radcliffe has forged the most provocative and unexpected career of the original “Harry Potter” franchise trio. He established himself as a deft comedic actor in TV shows “Miracle Workers,” “2 Dope Queens,” and voices on “The Simpsons” and “Robot Chicken.” The performance that completely reset his career was 2016’s “Swiss Army Man,” the feature debut from dynamic filmmaking duo the Daniels, which was so singular and inventive that it wiped the image of Radcliffe in a wizard robe from the mind of anyone who saw it. After that, and Radcliffe’s continued insistence on working with up-and-coming filmmakers on genre-pushing films, and “Guns Akimbo” doesn’t seem like such a stretch.
Described as a “darkly comedic action sci-fi thriller” (can we get any more words in there?), the first trailer for “Guns Akimbo” begins with Radcliffe waking up to find handguns nailed to his hands, and we can only imagine things get stranger from there.
The official synopsis reads: “Miles’ (Daniel Radcliffe) nerdy existence as a video game developer takes a dramatic turn when he inadvertently gets caught up as the next contestant with SKIZM, an underground gang live-streaming real-life death matches. While Miles excels at running away from everything, that won’t help him outlast Nix (Samara Weaving), a killer at the top of her game.”
“Guns Akimbo” is the second feature from New Zealand-born Jason Lei Howden, who is most prolific as a visual effects artist on films such as “War for the Planet of the Apes” and “The Avengers.” His first feature, the comedy horror “Deathgasm,” premiered at SXSW and was released in 2015 to largely positive reviews. It clearly attracted enough attention catch Radcliffe’s eye.
The film premiered at last year’s Toronto International Film Festival to somewhat mixed reviews. One look at the trailer, however, and it’s easy to see that this one may be an acquired taste. Those with the taste for off-kilter action comedies may love it.
Saban Films is releasing “Guns Akimbo” in theaters on February 28. Check out the trailer below.