Thursday, July 21, 2011

Ghost in the Machine (1993)

This is an absolutely classic, early-90's, B-list, cyber thriller. And believe it or not, there are enough of them to shake out the classics. Ghost in the Machine pulls together some of the most monumental movie themes of the 1990's and sends them flying down the information electron highway. That's right: computers (and all the glorious computer graphics that come with them), serial killers and hip-hop. Oh what a party. I'm glad they included the categorical black character (also classic); otherwise, using "nigger" as a punchline might seem a little inappropriate. So might quotes like, "Listen rookie; it's a whole new ball game since LA - we don't play that sitting duck shit anymore." Thanks Frazer! Your presence has given me a duly needed sense of calm! Sagging pants and sensational soundtrack aside, this flick also brings forth a couple of my favorite ladies. Karen Allen (of Indiana fame) and Jessica Walter (of Arrested Development) class things up with their feisty attitudes and girlish figures. Jessica may be young in this film, but her tea drinking stance never changes! I guess I shouldn't leave out the babysitter, played by Shevonne Durkin, of such masterpieces like Tammy and the T-Rex (omg; why don't I own this?), Magic Kid II and Speedway Junky. I am suddenly reassessing my babysitting career after learning that I should have been charging substantially more for subpar strip shows. It's not too surprising that the cast of females is where it's at, seeing as this flick was directed by Rachel Talalay, the force behind Tank Girl and probably about 5% of the female directing force in Hollywood (I jest, I jest...maybe). Throw in a couple of kids, some sucked-into-the-computer sequences, a car sliding upside down through a cemetery with a hysterically laughing serial killer driver, a few epic "final destination" type death scenes (microwave anyone?) and you've got quite the enjoyable 95 minutes. At least, so says Tesla. Looking at a few of the comments, not everyone agrees. I see some hate. I see some love. And, I see a lot of sarcasm. But my favorite response has to be from the user "chrismulkeyisgod," of London.
" I worry that maybe actual serial killers may use this film to find out about technology, and try to use technology to commit their crime. I can only assume that serial killers do not currently use the internet, so I feel safe right now (for the most part,) but no one can say what the future holds for us. I hope this film is not in our future (though I fear that it may be, especially when I see the news that's going on in the world). I can guarantee that I will no longer allow my children to visit any arcade alone, or buy software for our computer, alone. But even with these preventive measures, I cannot feel safe, now. This film really drives home just how dependent on electricity, and technology we really are (--we are very dependent!!). Bravo to Chris Mulkey et. all for taking on such a brave subject matter. It is about time that someone questioned all of this change that's going on around us. One only has to look at the news going on in the world to see. I suggest you watch this film with your children so that can be more wary too about the safe use of technology."
Thank you Chris Mulkey lover. Thank you for being the reason I have to defend my love of B-list sci-fi/fantasy thrillers. You may not be a dishwasher, but if I could set you to "explode," I would.

"There's no way anyone can kill somebody with a computer." If that was a stretch 18 years ago, I'm afraid to consider our future. Fine London weirdo! - you win this paranoia battle! Who knew that an MRI was the path to immortality? I guess the same person who figured out that internet and electricity are the same thing. Oh people.

Final Judgment: "Gloriously terrifying in a plethora of ways, and an epic encounter with all of the American fears of 1993 = take me back to simpler times!"

*Thanks to for the photos