Thursday, 28 August 2008

The Day Planet Terror Stood Still

So for movie night on 14 August we had a classic tale of alien contact, The Day The Earth Stood Still, and a modern take on horror/action/zombie badness in Planet Terror.

I don't know that I can add anything to the immense amount of analysis that has been levelled at Day over the last 50 years, so I'll just say that you should see it. You should especially see it if:
1. You're thinking of watching Mars Attacks, Close Encounters of the Third Kind or Independence Day (to pick three heavily influenced films);
2. You're in a world that, 18 years after the end of the Cold War, still has enough nuclear weapons to kill everyone twice over and you don't know what to do about it[1];
3. You're thinking of seeing the Re-make;
4. It's the 10th of December (2 days before the release of the re-make which The Crotchety Old Fan has declared THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL TO WATCH THE ORIGINAL MOVIE DAY (TDTESSTWTOMD for short))

Planet Terror is as pure a piece of bad zombie action as you could hope to see. It's all about putting zombies, go-go dancers, rogue military officers and a woman with a machine gun for a leg onto our screen and getting on with it. At the end of the day it adds very little to the zombie movie genre, but it's a pleasure to watch, and the little touches and in jokes (the "missing reel" and the jar of testicles spring to mind) make it a lot of fun. Also, Bruce Willis appears to be sporting Sten's beard. This film has been rated "Gruesome" by the V___ film preview board.

[1] I really need to get together a list of Nuclear Anxiety and/or Cold War films, and see which are relevant today; TDTESS alone won't answer that question, but it's certainly on the list.

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