Complete list of the films Guillermo del Toro has recommended on twitter. Click the 'Read notes' button to see his…
Assault on Precinct 13
L.A.'s deadliest street gang just declared war on the cops.
The lone inhabitants of an abandoned police station are under attack by the overwhelming numbers of a seemingly unstoppable street gang.
John Carpenter is the best director of all time.
An interracial gang wages an all-out assault on a police station. In their way is a street smart cop, a hottie with a nice rack, and a con who really wants a smoke. A blood-oath. An ice cream truck. A Real Housewife of Beverly Hills's last scoop of vanilla. A father's swift justice with a twist. Being marked for death by Che and the gang. A dispatcher's last call. A save-ass plan. A game of hot potato seals Snow White's fate. Backseat peek-a-boo. Having to wing it. Not arguing with a confident man. The ultimate last stand. Wilson finally gets that smoke. Carpenter's Mona Lisa.
A dynamic blend of kinetic direction, relentless action & energetic performances, Assault on Precinct 13 is a severely underrated action thriller that grabs the viewers' attention from its opening moments & never lets go until the very end. Written, directed, edited & scored by John Carpenter, it is one of the finest works of his career & arguably the most transparent reflection of this director's filmmaking style.
Set in a crime-infested ghetto in South Central Los Angeles, Assault on Precinct 13 covers a series of events taking place within the same day & begins with covering three plot lines which later merge into one. On a superficial level, it tells the story of a police officer who, with the help of convicted prisoners, defends a…
Carpenter's fascination with group adventures and siege movies has fed through his entire filmography - culminating in the vastly underrated Ghosts of Mars - but Assault on Precinct 13 is the original Hawksian blueprint distilled and revamped. It's a credit to Carpenter and the cast and crew involved that the entire experience feels effortless in spite of how meticulous the construction is. There's incredible character work, a defined time and place (Carpenter's score helps considerably), dedicated moments of tension, explosive set-pieces of violence and horror; and it's all in the course of 90 fucking minutes. Truly spellbinding exploitation, transforming human faces into modern zombies and introducing wave after wave within stark widescreen frames. Can't wait to make a double feature with this and Green Room, if only to observe the influential power of Carpenter's work to this very day.
Part of my:
Look at that, two cops wishing me luck. I'm doomed.
It's obvious from looking at this film that even at this point in his career Carpenter had some sort of obsession with the mechanics of the old westerns. A strange mix of Rio Bravo and Night of the Living Dead, this low-budget exploitation flick is a shining example of Carpenter's style. A group of heroes against an overwhelming force set to an empty and enigmatic background is an outline that can fit into a hell of a lot of his films, and yet, none of them are exactly alike. Comparing Assault on Precinct 13 to Ghosts of Mars (which was made 25 years…
Dun dun-dun-dun-dun. Dun dun-dun-dun-dun. Dun dun-dun-dun-dun.
I always seem to forget just how catchy that theme tune is. In fact, I think out of all the John Carpenter themes (and soundtracks, for that matter) the one for Assault On Precinct 13 is my favourite. It's also a soundtrack that does for the atmosphere of this film at its key moments the kind of job that ALL soundtracks are supposed to do.
In fact, as I was commenting to my wife last night, when I first saw Assault On Precinct 13 as a 13 year old as part of a Moviedrome series I actually recognised the theme tune even though I had definitely never seen the film before. Not sure where…
Carpenter Marathon Part 2
Day One, movie 2
Assault is Carpenter's first studio film and is all around a very exciting and engaging action movie. It is a fairly standard urban paranoia "evil gangs are destroying civilization" film while managing to sidestep most of the racism and classism surrounding most films in that genre, since the gang attacking the precinct is a pretty even mix of different ethnicities and the protagonist is a black man. It doesn't bring anything groundbreaking or interesting to the table as far as plot goes, but it is well shot, well acted film that sets the stage for Carpenter's rise to the rank of low-budget king.
Can't argue with a confidant more-or-less debut feature film.
Part 2 of the John Carpenter Marathon.
For some reason I thought this was going to be a blaxploitation movie, but it wasn't at all. It did have a black protagonist, but there was no exploitation going on in this film. Instead, it's a tense, tightly-plotted cop thriller where characters have to fend off a ravenous gang and their relentless siege on a police station.
While some of the movie suffered a bit (the gang wasn't developed all that much, and the dad character disappears for a lot of it), it's still really tense and really cool. John Carpenter is great at making tense situations even if the actual action wasn't as impressive due to the limitations of the budget.
How many times can I be sure I'm going to hear "Don't Come Around Here No More" before I realize it hasn't even been written yet???
it's good, but it's no Christine
Love a good cigarette gag
Had somehow thought that all of Carpenter's films had a touch of the supernatural or sci-fi/fantasy, so I prepared myself for something of a departure. Shouldn't really have bothered though, given that this is as much a horror film as any in the genre; replace the crazed street gang with a horde of zombies and there'd be no difference. (Though this approach has the benefit of amusing credits like "Oriental Warlord".) Also didn't know of the Hawks influence beforehand, but Leigh getting shot in the arm immediately brought to mind Tess taking an arrow in Red River, not to mention the deep currents running between Leigh and Wilson masked beneath a layer of detached stoicism. (Best cigarette lighting moment since…
The suburban paranoia that would be found later in Halloween is already very much present here, and it struck much more of a chord with me - instead of the boogeyman Michael Myers preying on the american dream of tranquil suburbs, the monster here is plain and simple, not to mention much less limited to the north-american experience: gang violence, a tidal wave of unstoppable nothings, nameless thugs coming toward you with the sole purpose of destroying your body. U.S.-exclusive, it ain't.
But more importantly it's the perfect example of why Carpenter is the master of the "One-Shot Adventure" screenplay format, the set-up is extremely lean and the way it unfolds, unnervingly tight. Visually he is equally laconic, not a…
When the kid dies first...!
Movies that are slightly off.
one per and alphabetical
i'll try to keep this one up :^)
in flux and some placements may be ephemeral…