A big collection of films that might be considered as strange, mindfucking, surreal and weird. Sorted by year. Suggestions are…
Who are they? And what do they want?
Nada, a down-on-his-luck construction worker, discovers a pair of special sunglasses. Wearing them, he is able to see the world as it really is: people being bombarded by media and government with messages like "Stay Asleep", "No Imagination", "Submit to Authority". Even scarier is that he is able to see that some usually normal-looking people are in fact ugly aliens in charge of the massive campaign to keep humans subdued.
Highly underrated film by John Carpenter just oozing with politically subversive biting satire that is even more relevant today then it was back in the 80's!
Roddy Piper's fight with Keith David's was quite a delicious little spectacle!
The film and score were so hip it had a swagger!
Last Word: I'm giving you a choice.. either put on "They Live" or start eatin' that trash can! ;-)
Recommended by Mick Culleton via my list "Movie Request Hotline"
Great Flick Mick! Thank You very much for recommending it!
What strikes me most about Carpenter is his coolness, the calm deliberation with which he lets his plots unfurl. This premise, in the hands of any other filmmaker, would be a lightning quick action comedy, Men in Black or Big Trouble in Little China style. But instead it's almost an hour into a 90 minute film before the hero convinces someone else to try on the glasses. And the film's signature showpiece, the big action number, is a good old-fashioned slugging match between two friends, all over the one's stubborn refusal to do something as simple as try on a pair of glasses (hilariously allegorical, of course). Even the film's most famous line, one I've known for years (as I…
I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass... and I'm all out of bubblegum.
John Carpenter's commercial appeal peaked in 1984 when he made Starman, a film that earned Jeff Bridges an Oscar nomination. A mere two years later Carpenter's brilliant Big Trouble in Little China would bomb at the box office and his career would never really recover. It only took one box office disappointment and suddenly the director could no longer find financing for his films. The quality of his next films are arguable, but there is no question that his best work was now behind him although he did have one last success in him.
They Live is Carpenter's last box office success, even…
A film of such mind-boggling brilliance, wit, charm, and real terror (the shots of infrastructure pre-sunglasses are, in my opinion, by far the most terrifying thing in Carpenter's cinema) that I can't help but fall to my knees and cry tears of joy, because damn, this is more than an all-timer to me. Super-duper-ultra masterpiece forever and ever. Carpenter, ride into the sunset you wonderful bastard.
This is one of very few Carpenter movies I've avoided for so long that it almost feels silly watching it today, when I'm thirty and should've developed some nostalgic love for this movie ages ago. I did just that with Big Trouble in Little China, and even though the theme in They Live should fit an adult (as my self, even though I refuse to really grow up), I found myself not getting as entertained as I should've been. I also had some problems with it not being Kurt Russel that played our beefy hero in a mullet.
They Live has more than one great thing going for it though. It has a does-this-fight-never-end? moment that I loved. It gets…
Overall as a complete package, this isn't Carpenter's best film. However the great moments are better than most filmmakers will get close to in their career.
Roddy Piper, having had his eyes opened, tries to wake his friend Keith David from his slumber but he's stubborn. So he literally has to beat him into submission in a bout that seems like it will never end. David is unwilling to accept that the world he lives in is more totalitarian (right word?) than he could imagine. Not until he has to.
I do this to friends who watch X-Factor.
5 stars for the film, 5 stars for the Carpenter and Piper commentary.
Over the top with no room for subtlety and I wouldn't have it any other way. Also Hot Rod gets a few suplexes in - NICE!
Fantastic, I mean truly fantastic!
I feel like there were obviously films like this before it's time, but this film has so much originality, it can't be beat. My favorite Carpenter film by far, narrowly topping Halloween. The world and the concept are just so masterful and intriguing. Every shot, I was glued to the screen waiting to see the outcome. The only scene that pissed me off because it was so lingering and pointless was the fight scene where he's trying to convince the guy to put on the glasses. I realize it was purposely trying to be comical, but it lasted way too long. I loved the nod to classic 50s and 60s sci-fi with the look and…
I really wanted to love They Live; I've been aware of it for a long time but just hadn't been able to get around to seeing it for one reason or another. I certainly enjoyed it, but ultimately felt just a tiny bit disappointed.
To get the negatives out of the way first: I think the score is very poor and unacceptably repetitive and the limitations of the tiny ($3 million) budget are evident particularly in the somewhat half-hearted climax.
The positives are many. Roddy Piper and Keith David are both excellent in the central roles, the key special effect works beautifully, and the socio-political message is as enduringly timely as that of the likes of RoboCop, released the year…
Who needs sunglasses
Forget the mass, join the few.
Hey baby, what's wrong?
The true. The good. The beautiful. The transcendental tripod upon which all thinking aims is as elusive as it is essential. If we could ever fully grasp one leg, the other two would be reachable. Of the three, the truth seems most distant. Yet a world viewed through a scientific lens seems to promise less haze. And Western man has lumbered along on two legs, aided by a telescopic cane, assured by the common sense that what he sees is worth believing in.
Lenses magnified man, the subject, to arbiter of truth. With eyeglasses one could read the word of God directly, eliminating His middleman. Competing truths, however, required interpretation and validation: there is no right answer but there are…
I'm here to write reviews and use words.....and I'm all out of words.
I put this next to my Criterion Blu-Rays because that's the kind of company it deserves.
So many memorable moments. Telling off the old lady alien at the supermarket, getting thrown out through Holly's window, the glasses fight. But what I love the most is Piper's reaction to finding out the whole world is run by reptilian humanoids: "figures it'd be something like this". The way he delivers it, with wry amusement and resignation. That alone can summarize why this movie's great.
For five years, film critic Scott Tobias compiled "The New Cult Canon" in a regular column for The A.V. Club…