Mandy (Angela Bettis – my sweet, sweet, MAY) is about to enter the hospital she works at for a double, 12 HOUR SHIFT — and while it’s evident from the first frame of this movie that every day is a struggle for her, she has NO IDEA how hard the next 12 hours are actually gonna be.
She walks in to a hypochondriac regular (Tom DeTrinis) demanding immediate attention, commiserates with co-worker Karen (Nikea Gamby-Turner), and then meets up with her ditzy “cousin” Regina (Chloe Farnworth) by the soda machine to deliver a kidney recently liberated from a deceased patient. Wait, what?
Yeah …. so as it turns out, Mandy & Karen have a side hustle selling organs on the black market. Their operation has been running smoothly thus far, but it’s tricky in that to keep the chain of supply moving, they need to decide which of their current patients is going to have a mysterious “accident” in order to donate their organs.
Mandy copes with this by snorting and shooting an endless supply of drugs from the hospital’s Rx stash as she visits each room to decide who the next victim will be. When a convicted murderer (David Arquette!) arrives after a botched suicide attempt, it seems almost too good to be true. BUT just as Mandy is making plans, Regina reappears claiming she lost the original kidney she picked up, and needs another ASAP before the gangster she’s working with murders her to take her own.
While Mandy works faster to try and get a replacement, Regina takes matters into her own hands and kick starts a chain reaction of ridiculous — and often hilarious — circumstances that result in a pile of dead bodies, a gunfight with law enforcement, and lots of gloriously spurting splatter.
There’s not a single moment of SHIFT that feels slow or wasted, and a lot of that credit is due to the performances — particularly Bettis, who moves Mandy from bitter and disaffected monotones to cheery and forced “customer service” voice in an impressively expert way. Farnworth is equally good, bringing a believable desperation and IDGAF attitude to every scene she’s in.
Writer and Director Brea Grant has crafted a wickedly fun 86-minute piece of entertainment, with some genuinely wacky surprise musical and dance numbers that add to your watching enjoyment. Another great entry in the horror-comedy subgenre.
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