The first “Three Kings” scene in question sees George Clooney’s Army major, Archie Gates, detailing how sepsis is “the worst thing about a gunshot wound, provided that you survive the bullet.” As he explains this to a private (played by “Adaptation” director Spike Jonze), he points to Mark Wahlberg’s sergeant as if shooting a gun. The viewer then sees inside the sarge’s body as Archie continues in voiceover about how the bullet “creates a cavity of dead tissue” and that cavity “fills up with bile, bacteria.”
It’s almost something a doctor like Rowan would say. “Three Kings” was written and directed by David O. Russell, whose name has become a lightning rod for controversy in recent years due to recurring misconduct allegations. Clooney infamously came to blows with Russell while filming “Three Kings,” though they later mended fences and Clooney acknowledged they made a great movie despite the unnecessary physical altercation where his director head-butted him.
Russell’s latest film, the star-studded “Amsterdam,” was a critical and commercial disappointment last year, but I caught up with it recently on streaming, and while it was stagey and unfocused in parts, I thought it wasn’t as bad as the reviews made it out to be. Part of that can be attributed to composer Daniel Pemberton’s score, which got me thinking about the redemptive power of music and art, but I digress.
Reviews for “Mayfair Witches” have been mixed as well, but given that Russell has a reputation for bullying actresses like Amy Adams and Lily Tomlin on set, there’s a certain poetic justice in having “Three Kings” inspire visuals from a female showrunner and producer in their adaptation of another book series from “Queen of the Damned” author Anne Rice.
“Mayfair Witches is now bursting arteries exclusively on AMC+.