Friday, March 4, 2011

Insidious Rubber Dog

After an amazing reunion dinner with most of my Top Girls cast, I thought of three other movies that are on my "Must See in the Near Future" List. The first is French surrealist Quentin Depieux's English language debut, the Sci-Fi-Horror film  Rubber. Now brace yourselves... Rubber is about a bunch of people watching a movie in the desert. The movie is about a tire (yes, a good old-fashioned rubber tire) that somehow became sentient and animate, becomes obsessed with a mysterious woman and uses his (the tire's name is Robert, apparently) telekinetic powers to kill anyone who gets in his way. Meanwhile, the audience watching the film is poisoned halfway through it, and they never get to see the end.

None of this, by the way, is ever explained. Unlike other 'inanimate objects gaining sentience' movies such as Killdozer (where an alien intelligence of electrical origin takes over a machine), Robert the tire simply is. No one is accused of or seen poisoning the audience. It just happens.

I've been reading odd bits and pieces about this film for a while, and have been "intrigued," to say the least. Gonzo art film? Insane Sci-Fi? Gory low-budget horror? Who knows? All I know is, I must see it. Watch the trailer (via) below and you tell me:

I don't know about you, but there are things in that trailer that really made me laugh... Depieux seems to turn the genre's conventions on their ears in what a way that is reminiscent of Wes Craven's original Scream, by pointing out and exaggerating those conventions in a wholly fresh way. If the movie is half as trippy and hilarious the trailer, Rubber should be a weird, wonderful and undefinable masterpiece. The newish film adjective Lynchian certainly applies. Entertainment Weekly has a short, amusing interview with Depieux, here. I highly recommend it for (if nothing else) a little bit of insight into the director's style and mindset. Rubber is available now On Demand and will see a limited theatrical release in April. I hope to see it this weekend..

Another film I'm chomping at the bit to see is Insidious, from the Writer/Director team of Leigh Whannell and James Wan (Saw; Dead Silence). I know there are Wan haters out there (Death Sentence, anyone?) but I happen to love both of the previous films on which they collaborated, Saw literally created a sub-genre (taken even further by directors like Eli Roth) while managing to trick me with its twist ending and the underrated Dead Silence was a creepy, atmospheric (if nonsensical) take on the "evil ventriloquist" meme. There are moments in that film that managed to creep out even an exceptionally jaded horror fan like Uncle P.

So - let's take a talented team of horror auteurs and add three amazing actors to their latest concoction and see what we get. Insidious appears to be about a young boy under attack from forces outside the physical realm. Patrick Wilson (Watchmen) and Rose Byrne -- love her-- [28 Weeks Later; "Damages" (!!!!!)] are the parents and Barbara Hershey (Black Swan; The Entity) is the grandmother.

I despised Paranormal Activity, but that film's director only has a producing credit here.

Finally, there's the big-screen return of hottie Brandon Routh (don't get me started) in the long-awaited Dylan Dog: Dead of Night. One of the most popular comics in Europe, Dylan Dog... is about an investigator (Routh) who deals in vampires, werewolves, zombies, demons and assorted occult phenomena. Equally hot cross-over star Taye Diggs and the always interesting Peter Stormare (Fargo; The Brothers Grimm) co-star. The trailer is just hilarious. It looks like a cross between Hellboy; Constantine: Lord of Illusions and Ghostbusters. Scheduled for release on April 29th, Dylan Dog's official site (and newest trailer) are here.

I just hope I'm not setting myself up for more disappointment this year... Still, it seems there are suddenly so many interesting movies coming out, even as I decry the death of Great American Filmmaking. Maybe I just want to have fun when I go to the movies. Don't you?

More, anon.

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