Pick up any paper, turn on any news channel or just look at the wall of that Bernie-bro Facebook friend you unfollowed for being too damn exhausting and you’ll soon come to realize the world is looking to kill you. I know, it’s a hard pill to swallow, but don’t just hang it on the partisan politics that has everyone screaming from the rooftops, realize your body is slowly rotting and the planet is hoping we will all go away. Honestly, we probably don’t deserve it, but I give us another 50 years before we’re joining the dinosaurs in the also ran display in the Earth’s extinction museum.
I would say we’re fucked, but that might imply that this is a new thing or something we can change. Sad? Maybe, but it’s not all bad.
Like Vietnam, Watergate and the Cold War, these dire times might have a brightside and that is an uptick in quality cinema.
I don’t think there’s one to put my thumb on yet, but if the past is prologue to potential greats, let’s take a look at some fun films from cynical times that might hint at things to come as we wander in the vast darkness of space, waiting for oblivion to find us.
All The Presidents Men:
Suddenly popular again for seemingly unknown reasons, the story of Woodward and Bernstein plays like a fairy tale from brighter times.
The Parallax View:
Convinced it can’t be just one bad guy behind all this shit, nothing is a coincidence and there must be a room full of illuminati types pulling the strings in some weird underground bunker? You should watch this…cause you’re right!
Long for the days when Robert De Niro gave a shit? Feeling a little lonely? Are you teetering on the brink of a nervous collapse and you’re desperate to find someone to pin the blame on? You should meet Travis Bickle, he can walk you through the early stages of how to misdirect your aggression.
I don’t know if it’s an intentional style choice or just a side effect of the weather, but Ozploitation films always feature a level of sweat to them that adds weight to the suffering onscreen. Turkey Shoot runs rebellion and class warfare through the mud. It’s pretty great.
Escape From New York:
New York might have priced itself out of the conversation concerning abandoned cities of the United States, so feel free to substitute Chicago, Detroit or large swatches of opioid country in the Appalachia for it, but the moral remains the same…you have been abandoned and even your heroes don’t like you.
Think you might have been manipulated by the media to satisfy market shares and secure premium advertisement rates? Feel like the world is run by a handful of conglomerates that own everything? Are you mad ass hell and despite the fact you can’t take it anymore, you have to because the universe has steamrolled you and all you have left is the fleeting wish to feel one last moment of honest emotions before you’re smushed by insurmountable debt and gross societal deception? You might actually want to skip this one cause it will snuff you out.
Have you noticed every commercial seems to be random nonsense that has almost nothing to do with the product it’s promoting while it runs through 51 ideas in 30 seconds before ending on some clever pun that you know some smug asshole fist-bumped their reflection in the bathroom mirror while sucking down day 18 of their organic juice cleanse when they got it? Yeah, I hate those assholes too. Putney Swope was an incredible satire of the advertising industry before the advertising industry decided to use it’s own douchebaggery to market itself.