Friday, August 28, 2009

Videodrome (1983)

Well, I'm never going to tell anyone I have a media obsession again. Oh no; I didn't even begin to know what obsession was until I turned on this creeper. In fact, I'm still reeling a little bit. I'd say I don't remember the last time I felt this uncomfortable, but that would be a bold-faced lie: the last time I felt nearly this disconcerted was watching Blue Velvet. Shit, that movie is creepy. And this one is right up there with it. It's not just the S&M and the frequent nudity. No, it's not even the grotesque hallucinations of self-mutilation and organs and betatapes. Nor even the graphic snuff films. Although the giant dildo disguised as a Japanese doll and that pretty little Japanese girl in traditional geisha makeup started to cause the butterflies to stir, not even that made me squeal aloud in terror. No, no: it was actually when that chick burnt her breast with a cigarette and then he smelled the end of it in lust that I knew that I was never going to forget this movie. And I'm not alone. This shit is critically acclaimed, although it has made next to nothing. I'm sure the careers of James Woods and Debbie Harry didn't suffer (she even showed her tits!) But, it's hard to believe that this flick only cost 5$ million when the effects are so good. We're talking epic makeup/digital/claymation type moving media with gyrating tapes and beta-eating stomachs. The whole thing is horrorific, that's for sure. I'm still trying to process the brainwashing tumor, warping reality with hallucinations, assassination angle. And I think it might take a while. In the meantime, I can occupy myself with images of stomach mutations and penetrations, Harry tits, the uncomfortable realization that some people are turned on by this and the overwhelming desire to stay away from the TV.

I deem it: "Grotesquely generational and seriously psychedelic!/A festering virtual reality of wired weirdness!/The first and last time I'll even consider the remote possibility that someone thinks James Woods is attractive!/The Bible of our sickest conspiracy theorists abides with stories of the apocalyptic virtual future!/Death to Videodrome; Long Live the New Flesh!

"The taping mechanism is all self-contained; you don't have to do anything now except hallucinate."
"I can't cope with the freaky stuff."
"Watching tv will help patch them back into the world's mixing board."
"Your reality is already half video hallucination."
"The television is the retina of the mind's eye in these times."
"Reality is less than television."

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