Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Apocalypse Noir... Redux
With John Hillcoat's adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's The Road due to depress holiday shoppers soon and the "economic slowdown" looking like the top of a steep-ass slope, it seems the perfect time to pull out the works of the minor prophets and read or watch and learn a thing or two. I had the pleasure of reading Victor Gischler's satire, Go-Go Girls of the Apocalypse, recently and found myself having a grand old time vicariously watching the world burn down, (and struggle to right itself again). Dunno if his publishers are behind any of the financial meltdown going on, but it looks uncannily like the beginning of the end as recalled by protagonist Mortimer Tate, less a boom than a slowing and atrophic slide into chaos. As I read I pictured the book as a mini-series, (the same way Jonathan Lethem's fantastic Amnesia Moon - another great satiric road trip across post-disaster America - did) with each episode dedicated to fleshing out the perversions featured in a chapter. Honestly, each chapter feels like it's own book - there's just that much material thrown about. I couldn't picture a single two-hour movie doing it justice until I saw Neil Marshall's Doomsday - a kick ass mash-up of The Road Warrior and Escape from New York, with a little Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court thrown in for good measure. Have you seen it? Are you kidding me? Is there any reason this wasn't the blockbuster of the year? The spirit of John Carpenter is alive and well and living in Scotland. He's also made a kick-ass werewolf movie, (Dog Soldiers) and a sort of Deliverance meets Slumber Party Massacre, (except without the nudity or lesbian subtext, so maybe nothing like that at all), flick called The Descent. So, for the most dirgy holiday season in recent memory, I suggest adding a little mirth with these.