26
May
13

John Dies at the End (2012)

Soy sauce. It's alive!

Soy sauce. It’s alive!

I must say, the Netflix instant queue has been very good to us lately. Without it, we wouldn’t have seen some of the best, recent horror we’ve seen in a while; Beyond the Black Rainbow and The House of the Devil topping that list. Those two films both wear their adoration for the 80’s on their sleeves, and so are very different from the latest film I can add to my list of Netflix instant queue  success stories: John Dies at the End.

It’s probably fair to say John Dies at the End has nothing to do with the 80’s. Instead of trying to evoke something familiar, John Dies at the End does exactly the opposite: nothing is what it seems, everything is something new, unexpected and alien. All that being said, I can’t claim that parts of John Dies didn’t remind me of Cronenberg‘s Naked Lunch, what with talking bugs and strange, addictive substances…

In a nutshell, John Dies at the End is about two friends who stumble upon a hallucinogenic drug called Soy Sauce and end up

Weird alternate-masked universe!

Weird alternate-masked universe!

saving the world from alien domination. That’s all I’m going to say about the plot; I don’t see much sense in elaborating.  Part of the fun of this movie is having no idea where it’s going to take you next. To be fair, I haven’t read the book (a frequent Schlock Wave refrain, I know) so of course I really had no idea what the thing was about. I have read the inevitable “this movie isn’t like the book wah wah wah” internet whines, who claim Don Coscarelli (of Phantasm fame, a franchise I’m quite fond of and plan on rewatching so I can write it up here) should never have been at the

We're all made of meat, after all.

We’re all made of meat, after all.

helm. Despite my ignorance of the book I’m just going to come right out and say they’re wrong. This movie is so enjoyable and so unexpected, it can definitely stand on its own two legs, book or no book. And what a pleasure to see Coscarelli make something fresh and new!

I know there’s no way most folks out there would enjoy this film. It’s too offbeat, too psychedelic for people to get behind. But for horror fans looking for something new and interesting, this is a definite must-see.

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