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The 1980s have been sanitized in "histories" of what the decade meant and produced. POPULATION 1 captures the delusional narcissism and palpitating nihilism that were everywhere in the 1980s.
This film is a great vehicle for the late Tomata DuPlenty a man with talent galore who is more legend than producer of tangible record (his short oeuvre with THE SCREAMERS a smidgen of his over-the-top personality).
Tomata is trapped in a bomb shelter and reliving his warped version of history after the human race has been wiped out. This allows the film to liberally interweave new wave videos to illustrate concepts (the fact that some of these pieces had been shot way before the movie made of course for a cheaper production - again, a totally 80s tradition).
In addition to noticing that Tomata looks a LOT like Kevin Bacon, the heretofore unheralded Sheela Edwards almost steals the show with sexy performances, JAZZ VAMPIRE being the most intense and passionate.
Terribly unresolved and choppy, the movie nonetheless artfully delivers the mindset of the post-punk boomers at their most creative and fearlessly unpolished. If you recall being at parties in the 80s where art-damaged scenesters were coked up and talking all night about a deep concept for a movie that was actually nonsensical and self-indulgent... well this is the one that actually GOT MADE!
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