eXistenZ - REVIEW
And I thought I'd seen every messed-up David Cronenberg film around...
Settling down to newer, tamer efforts like A Dangerous Method with the misguided belief that "It's better than no David Cronenberg film, right?..." while in fact secretly pining for another Scanners, Videodrome or even Dead Ringers.
Then eXistenZ is lent to me and I'm sitting there, expecting a kind of fast-paced Gatacca meets The Matrix type sci-fi thriller. That would have been fun enough but...
This is true, CLASSIC Cronenberg. Complete with gore, f***ed-up genius imagery, super creative concepts and disturbed individuals by the thousands. Where do I even start with this?!
You've got this new game being tested called "eXistenZ" which is meant to be extremely realistic. Its controllers are basically living slabs of flesh with ombilical cords which plug into an anus in your back. Are you following? Good. Along the way, Jude Law tries his hand at an American accent (lol), Ian Holm attempts a Robin Williams-style funny voice, a tiny double-headed dragon lends its skeleton to shape a gun with human tooth bullets (HUMAN TOOTH BULLETS), people lube and lick their back anuses, toads are gutted and about another million great things happen.
How did I miss this movie?!
I'm actually kind of pissed off that I hadn't seen it before. I would have loved that shit back in the day. It's like Videogamedrome for crying out loud!
Is the film silly? Oh yes. But it's so good at its silliness that you just accept it and start taking everything in with a mix of fascination, hilarity and giddy repulsion. I mean, the film is very funny but it's also really genuinely good. It's imaginative to say the least and puts images in your head you'd never even dreamt of putting there. It's pretty brutal and unsubtle about its depiction of body horror and anything fleshy or slimy but that's what Cronenberg does best! It all works beautifully and makes for an unforgettable, unique experience you'll still be loling about days later.
For me, eXistenZ is David Cronenberg's last truly great film. Sure Spider and Eastern Promises had their moments but this crazy-ass sci-fi horror flick is just too beautifully out there and too beautifully Cronenbergian to even hang out in the same planet as these other movies.
Do yourself a favour and check out this little gem, I swear you'll never look at your anus in the same way ever again.
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