(Note: I watched the so-called "final cut" of this movie)
Mmmm... This is one weird movie, and I barely know how to start. It's the second film by Southafrican filmmaker Richard Stanley, the first being the stylish "Harware", which as arty as film with a killer robot can be.
This one is a road movie with serial killer, but also much more. Stanley seems interested on this minimal story only as far as he can use it to connect it to other topics, such as racism (the film is not set in the southwest of the USA, as the pic seems to suggest, but in Namibia), legends about shape-shifting spirits, human sacrifices, etc.
The result reminds me of what little African literature I've read. The deliberate pace and the significance of the plot remind me of Coetzee, who often transforms extremely physical, realistic situations into morality tales. The ankward use of time (rather than in a timeline, the film seems set on a suspended unit of time), the constant mix between reality and dream, or dream and fantasy is also a staple in other African writers.
Is it any good? I can't tell, really. Stanley certainly has an eye for the oniric, his use of film editing, which often places "alien" images or whole scenes inside others, is simply amazing. Take your wildest dream, and it probably be strikingly similar to the images of this movie.
As an story, however, the film is harder to sell. There's a plot, yes, and a beginning and an end, but that's all you'll find here that resembles a narration. Arrakis, Dune. Land of spice, of giant worms. Center of the Universe.