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…
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.
They Live! Regarded now as a cult movie, and directed by the legendary John Carpenter, this movie is one that has somehow evaded my attention for the last couple of decades.
The film has a very interesting idea and premise, and one that appeals to my way of thinking. Considered a satire and inspired by the ever-increasing commercialization of 80's pop culture and politics, the idea for the film came from a short story called 'Eight O'Clock in the morning', written in the 60's.
With regards to the political slant on the film - this is best explained in the Wikipedia article:
The more political elements of the film are derived from Carpenter's growing distaste with the ever-increasing commercialization of…
This is one of Carpenter's few comedies. This isn't a horror or action film, it is purely a satirical comedy that just happens to have science fiction elements.
I think that when you take this film seriously you'll end up hating it. It has so much tongue in cheek and cheese in it (tongue in cheese??), that it is hard to really take seriously. Not that it matters, because it is so much fun. The premise works, the corny one liners are hilarious and it just ambles along at a pleasant pace, never outstaying its welcome.
And the fist fight scene is just one of the best things ever put on film.
Entertaining action/sci-fi B-movie with a healthy dose of social class satire from director John Carpenter. Former wrestler Rowdy Roddy Piper, rocking a sublime mullet and some typical 80's gear plays a down on his luck construction worker who finds a pair of sunglasses that helps him spot the aliens hiding amongst the upper class trying to control America.
The film has some great cheesy dialogue and terrifically over the top fight/wrestling sequence. This is an absurd 80's action movie but it also has something to say, not necessarily one of Carpenters best but still worth a watch.
Despite not being delivered perfectly or even gripping for a full 90 odd minutes, Director John Carpenter delivers a fantastic message in 'They Live' for which he was snubbed and under-looked at in the following years.
Despite mentioning the film being 'not delivered perfectly' Carpenter does however use the medium to put across eye opening themes to the nation when it had seen better days economically. He uses 'Down on his look' Nada - An unemployed construction worker to showcase the misfortunes (in slightly more extreme cases) of unfortunate citizens who experienced the days of disaster in the late 80's.
All in all, I love to see smart directors like Carpenter who can use the idea of cinema to portray serious matters whilst taking you to a whole new world than our own. This was surely relevant in They Live.
for the record, we can now comfortably admit that shepard fairy is a hack ~
Maybe my favorite John Carpenter movie, and that is saying something
I have to be completely honest: They Live really underwhelmed me, mainly for two reasons:
1. Roddy Piper and Meg Foster just do /not/ have the charisma of Carpenter regulars like Kurt Russell and Adrienne Barbeau.
2. The fight between Piper and David went on for too fucking long. The point could have been made in under half the run time.
I mean, don't get me wrong, it's not a bad film per-se; Keith David is great (seriously, why did John not give this guy his own starring role?!), the camera work is on-point as always (those alleyway shots during the meeting shooutout in particular), I'm fond of the 50's sci-fi throwback vibe and there's definitely some memorable one-liners, but it's a far cry from Escape From New York or Big Trouble in Little China when it comes to action films directed by John Carpenter.
John Carpenter, you've led me astray! What is this plotless, cliche-ridden, dully written piece of crap? Piper's acting was terrible- no, almost everybody's acting was terrible. This gets 2 stars because of a 20 minute fight scene over whether or not a dude puts on a pair of ridiculous-looking sunglasses. But that's not necessarily a good thing.
Oh, I was so disappointed! Carpenter has done so much better than this!
A very unique B-movie that is way smarter than it initially appears. It has some good commentary on politics among all the dumb 80s B-movie action and charm. Has some good effects and an interesting story, as well as (arguably) the best fight scene of all time!
Finally watched They Live with the commentary track by Carpenter and Piper, fantastic track all around.
1022 Screening - campy, funny, and sadly more relevant than ever.
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For five years, film critic Scott Tobias compiled "The New Cult Canon" in a regular column for The A.V. Club…
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I started with a top 10 list and decided what the hell lets see how far I can go. Top…