Rather than acting as a release valve on the past few years, 2018 continued to increase the pressure, as American culture grows steadily more hostile and volatile. During such turbulent times, satiric genre films that hold up a mirror to society are typically not favorably received — the closer to the bone the cut is, the less audiences wish to sit through it. Perhaps that’s why writer-director Sam Levinson’s Assassination Nation came and went last fall, as it’s a film that cuts to the bone and then some. Assassination Nation is a remarkably angry film, telling a pointed tale of an entire town descending into riotous chaos through their deep-seated hatred of a group of independent young women (there’s a reason the town is named Salem). Matching the film’s anger is its craft, as Levinson goes from outré camera moves to bravura one-take scenes to expressionistic lighting to mixed mediums and more, with each stylistic choice justified in its overwhelming sensory overload (perfect for 2018, of course). This is exactly the sort of movie an angry artist makes in an outrage culture, and it’s one that you may be tempted to overlook or dismiss as so many did. However, if you give the film a chance, you may find a bit of yourself in it, and that recognition and understanding could at least relieve some of that pressure we all feel.