“Anger turns to rage turns to violence.” That’s how Derrick Borte sums up his latest movie, Unhinged. Written by Carl Elsworth, the new thriller stars Russell Crowe in the role of an unnamed man who ruthlessly, and violently, stalks a single mother (Caren Pistorius) and her child (Gabriel Bateman) after a bad bout of rush hour road rage.
“By no means are we advocating this [behavior],” the 52-year-old Borte tells Inverse. “I don’t think it glorifies violence. Violence has existed since the beginning of film. It reflects the violent world we’re in, and I hope that sparks conversation.”
He adds, “It illuminates how quick we are to react to things and take it too far.”
It was a late June afternoon when Borte spoke to Inverse about Unhinged. At the time, the film was slated to open July 1. Before our appointment, distributor Solstice Pictures — founded in 2018 with Unhinged as its first big release — delayed the film again, to July 31. It was delayed yet again to its current date, August 21, all due to the pandemic.
Now, a month and a half after our interview, major theater chains like AMC are opening again to the dismay of medical experts. Borte said at the time it’s not up to him when his movie is released, but he foresees a “huge appetite” for the theaters after quarantine. “Once it’s safe, the appetite will be huge,” he says. “Escapist fare seems to be what people want. Hopefully, it fills some kind of void people are looking for after social distancing for months. We’ll see.”