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|Index||154 reviews in total|
First saw this cult gem of the 80s in college..hard to explain other than Emilio plays the LA slacker to the hilt, he wanders into all sorts of peculiar situations his best as a Car Reposser for the Helping Hand acceptance corp. Harry Dean Stanton plays the veteran Repo Man with the "Code". Truly a bizzarre, unpredictable, wacky movie that is worth multiple viewings(buy it)...tell your friends J. Frank Parnell told you to get it...
This is a cult sci-fi comedy that is highly regarded in some circles
but one which I never had the opportunity to watch before now; as usual
with such 'modern classic' fare for me, while I liked it well enough,
its uneven tone and general bleakness cause it to fall short of its
A punk kid is reluctantly roped in as a Repo Man, a renegade band of people who repossess unpaid-for cars; their workforce includes world-weary Harry Dean Stanton, secretary Vonetta McGee and philosophical caretaker Tracey Walter. While there's an admittedly witty script replete with four-letter words, we also get some gratuitous grossness such as having Emilio Estevez vomiting (for no good reason) after a chase on foot! Typical of writer-director Cox, the soundtrack is full of rock/punk songs; appropriately, his next film SID AND NANCY (1986) would be a biopic of Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious and his notorious girlfriend Nancy Spungen, which I might just acquire anyway now.
The sci-fi elements involve an unseen 'alien' locked inside the trunk of a car which is chased through the streets of L.A. by two rival bands of Repo Men a' la MOTHER, JUGS AND SPEED (1976) that I've recently watched as well as the C.I.A. The meltdown experienced by anyone coming into contact with the 'alien' resembles the explosively atomic climax of KISS ME DEADLY (1955) and a further tribute to that noir masterwork is the fact that the end credits here likewise read from down to up! In any case, the flying finish with the now-sizzling car soaring skywards was a nice touch.
"Repo Man" has long been in a long list of movies to see for me. I
finally watched it yesterday with extreme anticipation and, while I was
not let down, I was not too impressed. I was expecting extreme punk
rock on home video and what I got was half-assed 80's trend-punk on
I wouldn't really call this film a comedy, but it does have some very funny moments. It's the same kind of smart humor you find in films like "Raising Arizona" but it is not done nearly as well. The acting is great, better that I expected. My biggest complaint about "Repo Man" is that it really isn't all that edgy. It's tame really. Not enough violence, gore, insanity or punk music for my tastes.
I did gain a ton of respect for Emilio though.
6 out of 10, kids.
Cool soundtrack. Wacky plot. Some fantastic cameo performances. Great lead performances by Harry Dean Stanton and Emilio Estevez...what more could you ask for? Probably one of the most quotable movies ever made too. You can watch the film over and over again and never get bored...and spot things you never spotted the first time round. The soundtrack is legendary - Iggy Pop performing the main theme tune, great racks from the Plugz and the Circle Jerks. Alex Cox really did his homework on this one. The test of a great film is time and this one is still as fresh as a daisy. Strange but true fact: I liked the film so much I named my band after it!
This is my favorite movie of all time. Notice I said "my favorite" not
"the best." Other pictures may be superior on technical merit, actors'
Regardless, "Repo Man" holds its own, and I try to explain to anyone who will listen that it is a wonderful science-fiction action-adventure comedy-drama.
Besides all that, it has one of the best soundtracks ever with Fear, Black Flag, Suicidal Tendencies, the Circle Jerks even make a cameo appearance as a lounge act. Hilarious! Otto: "I used to like these guys."
I've seen Repo Man perhaps 50 times over the last 20+ years, and I still find new material to laugh at. And laugh I do, long and out loud. It's simply a remarkable movie.
Finally, if you watch the DVD, it has a great commentary track, which is a rarity.
You can analyze it all you want. Me? I'll just watch, listen, enjoy.
In Repo Man, we find an adroit but rudderless teenager (Emilio Estevez,
certainly his best role), a grizzled mentor (Harry Dean Stanton,
fortifying his indie credibility) and an entire wave of oddballs and
alien hunters out to scupper them both. Stanton slyly recruits Estevez,
who has discarded his mundane job and family in an unwitting but well
meant desire for adventure, to repossess an indentured car. Having
tasted of and seduced by The Life, Estevez joins the oddball gang of
Repo Men to indulge in a nervy, amphetamine fuelled re-acquisition of
the automobiles of the not-so-fast and not-so-furious; the working man,
the jobbing stiff, payment overdue. When the next mark turns out to be
a prized Chevy Malibu, only our hero, aided by a new found love, can
possibly turn things round and find his life finally worthy.
Unfortunately the car in question has been sequestered by forces
unknown, and the scramble is on. But what exactly is inside the trunk?
Cox's finest moment.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is a great cult classic, that's very bizarre, but wildly entertaining, with a creative story, and fun performances!. All the characters are cool, and I loved the dialog as well, plus Emilio Estevez is simply amazing in this!. Harry Dean Stanton is fantastic as the guy who shows Otto(Emilio) the ropes, and so much wonderful wacky stuff happens throughout, plus I absolutely loved the ending, as the glowing Chevy Malibu looked so cool!. The whole unknown cast is great, and it's extremely well made and written as well, plus it's very, very unpredictable throughout. The opening is just plain hilarious as Emilio(Otto) tells his boss off, and it was really refreshing to see something so unique for a change, as I haven't seen that type of movie in a while, plus Tracey Walter is very funny here as Miller. The script is one of the most unique you will ever see, and all the characters are extremely likable, plus Dick Rude(Duke),Jennifer Balgobin(DebbI) and Miguel Sandoval(Archie) are hilarious as the three punks who like to cause trouble. This is a great cult classic, that's very bizarre, but wildly entertaining, with a creative story, and fun performances, I highly recommend this one!. The Direction is great!. Alex Cox does a great! job here with solid camera work, cool angles and keeping the film at a very fast pace. The Acting is a lot of fun!. Emilio Estevez is amazing as always and is amazing here, he is extremely convincing as a punk, and Doesen't take any crap from anybody, as I loved his attitude, it's trashy but it sure worked, as I think this is one of of the coolest characters he has played! (Emilio Rules!!!!!!!). Harry Dean Stanton is fantastic, as the guy who shows Otto the ropes, he had good chemistry with Emilio, had a great character, and this was very memorable role in my opinion. Tracey Walter is great as miller, he had some great lines, and was just too cool overall, I really liked him. Olivia Barash is OK as the girlfriend but managed to be the dullest character in the film. Sy Richardson is funny as Lite, I dug him. Zander Schloss is convincing as the nerd, and did his job well. Dick Rude(Duke),Jennifer Balgobin(Debbi) and Miguel Sandoval(Archie) are hilarious as the three punks who like to cause crap. Rest of the cast are fine. Overall I highly recommend this one!. ***1/2 out of 5
I really like this movie. It is one of my absolute favorites, the only
good movie Emilio Estevez has ever starred and one of the best movies
made in the 80's.
It is really hard for me to explain why I like it. Ever since I accidentally taped it I have watched it time after time, enjoying the wacky plot, the subtle humor and truly bizarre duologue (another element in the movie which Quentin Tarantino has stolen), the cool punk rock soundtrack and the superb acting of Emilio Estevez and Harry Dean Stanton in the Otto - Bud companionship and, not the least: discovering something new every time I have watched it.
And that is probably why: "Repo Man" is Tarantino ten years before "Pulp Fiction" and "X - Files" ten years before that stupid show ever got started. The only other movie that pops into my mind if I should make a comparison is Richard Kellys "Donnie Darko" and that movie doesn't even posses the ironic, unpretentious B -movie kind of attitude which makes "Repo Man" so great.The film reminds me more of novels like Don Delillos "White Noise" or Thomas Pynckon's "The crying of Lot 49" and the script is almost like a mixture of these two.
"Repo Man" simply manages to catch and satirize the whole feeling of the 80's in one and a half hour: The fear of nuclear war,consumerism, New Age,pseudo science and a lot more. The - at best amateurish - special effects (take, for instance the "hail of ice cubes")doesn't really matter. They just tend to strengthen the unconventional and off - beat mood of the film.
On top of that it manages to mix several film genres: comedy, thriller, Sci-fi, buddy movie etc. and integrate a punk soundtrack superbly.
But let's face it: "Repo Man" IS a cult film in the sense that not everybody would like it. Like others has commented it can never - and probably shouldn't be - included into the same league as "Citizen Cane". It is best kept as is: a cult pearl, loved by a small audience.
Emilio Estevez'ever surly and snotty, pseudo-rebellious attitude is simply perfectly casted for the Otto character paired with Harry Dean Stantons elderly "mentor" in car theft and speed sniffing.
It seems to me that he knows that it's his best performance ever, since he and Charley Sheen copied a lot of its elements and even used the same actors in the terrible "Men at work". Just a wild guess, but anyone agree?
Another wild guess upon watching the film: Have you noticed how "Repo Man" refers to a lot of other movies, mostly big Hollywood blockbusters of the same era?
So far I have found a least five references: "Grease" (The race with the Rodriguez brothers at the bottom of the reservoir) "Star Wars" (the ending), "E.T"(The flying car), "Raiders of the Lost Ark" (the car burning up bad guys), "Close Encounters of The Third Kind/Degree...whatever(The ending again, off course."2001 - A space Odessey" is also a possibility. Finally, Otto's reply:"Thank you I made them myself",to Leila's comment: "Charming friends you got there, Otto" is actually stolen from "Blade Runner", in which J.F. Sebastian makes the same reply to Pris, the android.
Another couple of goofs: In the scene where it is revealed that Marlene is in league with the Rodriguez brothers,she is dressed just like Patty Hearst was on the famous picture from the time she had joined/was forced into The Symbionetic Liberation Army.
The Stanley Millgram experiment: The way Otto is tortured when he falls into the hand of the FBI agents reminds of the famous experiment Stanley Millgram made to test how far people were willing to go in inflicting pain on others.
Elvis certainly IS in the movie: In the famous "john Wayne was a fag" scene Miller mentions: "I installed two way mirrors in his flat in Brentwood and he comes to the door in a dress". Elvis Presley actually had two mirrors installed in his bedroom, in order to watch his friends having intercourse with groupies.A man who liked to "dress up"was the notorious head of FBI, Edgar Jay Hoover. This way a whole new meaning can interpreted from the otherwise absurd dialog. What they are discussing is really masculinity, incarnated in some of the idols of American popular culture and the right wing, albeit with a problematic sexuality. That is why they force Otto to tell who beat him up and form a posse to take the law into their own hands. This just to show some of the many layers in the movie and the subtlety with which a theme like "masculinity" is incorporated and connected with another theme that runs through the movie: "Violence".
To end this little essay i would ask the reader to imagine this: Think of this film done with a multi - million budget, lots of special effects, nerve-wrecking car chases etc. - It would totally loose its charm and originality! That is why I have made such a big fuss out of pointing out the inter textual references. The thing is that about this time the "New Hollywood" of the seventies had faded out. Instead shitty
multi -million- dollar budget films by geeks like George Lucas that used loads of special effects to compensate for a thin plot line had taken over. The great thing about "Repo Man" is that it manages to parody and ridicule these juggernauts while carrying on the free, inventive spirit of the "cult cinema" that arose in the seventieths, while at the same time portraying and satirizing the 80's and the Reagan-era.
Finally: If anyone ever tries to do a remake of this movie I'll kill them.
It is one of those oddly remembered movies... I remember going to see it at the World Theater on High St in Columbus, OH. 20 years later, however, I don't know what I ever saw in it. Bizareeness to the extreme. "A Repo Man is always intense" and the plate of shrimp is all I remember... although I lusted after the 66 Nova. Emelio Estevez is the quintessential smart mouth punk (leading up to the Breakfast Club...) and Harry Dean Stanton is, well, Harry Dean Stanton. One of those strangely compelling movies yet repulsive at the same time, kind of like Pulp Fiction. If you like weirdness this is the movie for you! xxxxxxxxxxx
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Repo man is a blatant rites of passage film. Otto grows from being a
nihilistic, selfish, dismissive punk, into a happy nuclear-powered
joyrider. Along the way he meets many people who make mistakes
constantly, and are looking for happiness or approval from external
sources, often him. Everybody's looking for something, and they're
almost certainly not getting it. The Chevy is one device that
represents unfulfillable desire. Yet Otto finds it in the end. He
fulfils his heart's desire. That's what this film is about for me.
Learning to love life for all it's warts and vanities. I would compare
it to Terry Gilliam's Brazil, or even at a stretch American Beauty.
Never, ever Fight Club.
PS: The film was written by a guy who went to my school. Oohyeah baby. Other alumni include Dennis Pennis and Will Self.
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