Thursday, January 14, 2016

Thursday Movie Picks: Post-Apocalyptic World


Thursday is upon us. It's the end of the world as we know it, and I'm feeling fine...and like showcasing some funny movies.

Post-Apocalyptic Movies can get a little bit heavy, and I haven't seen enough Mad Max movies for them to qualify. I also didn't want go Hunger Games-Divergent-Maze Runner on this one, nor did I want to get into the darkness of something like The Road.

So, another week of Wandering through the Shelves' Thursday Movie Picks.


Here are mine:

Idiocracy
Dir. Mike Judge, 2006


A guy named Joe (Luke Wilson) gets into a hibernation chamber, is forgotten, and wakes up hundreds of years later to find his country in the worst shape ever. All the people are morons. While it fails a bit at reaching a level where you might take it seriously (a tone/production design problem more than anything), it succeeds in being ultimately true. I mean just take a look around you. People are getting dumber by the minute, blinded by greed and need, need for HUGE BRANDS and material possessions and stuck in their technology (I'm guilty of that one). This movie was a big disaster and failed to find much of an audience, but it rings true and is another example of Mike Judge's never-ending wit and imagination.

Zombieland
Dir. Ruben Fleischer, 2009


Of the Zombie-Comedy sub-genre, I find this one to be a nice companion to the British comedy, Shaun of the Dead. The zombie apocalypse is often so dark and scary. I like the comedic take. Woody Harrelson plays the classic tough guy, Tallahassee, the perfect companion to Jesse Eisenberg's shy college student, Columbus. On the road, the two meet up with a pair of sisters played by Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin and try to make it out alive. Bill Murray and such as well. I laughed my ass off.

This is The End
Dir. Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, 2013


I really laughed my ass off with this one, a brilliant comedy that landed in my Top Five back in 2013. Such a non-stop piece of genius from writer-director team Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. This one may not count as it begins in the actual world of current day Los Angeles on the day of the apocalypse, but most of the movie finds its heroes, including Jay Baruchel, Seth Rogen, James Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson, and Danny McBride, all playing versions of themselves stranded alive in Franco's mansion, post-apocalypse. The movie is a masterpiece of violent comedy in my opinion, if only for the fate of Michael Cera (playing a depraved, coke-head Michael Cera). And The End of this End is so magical.

An Ongoing Series by Wandering through the Shelves

24 comments:

  1. I love all of these films. I haven't seen Idiocracy in so long. I need to revisit that.

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    1. It's ridiculous. I need to watch it again myself.

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  2. I've only seen Zombieland and This is the End, and I can't say I'm fond of either one. Zombieland was okay, but I didn't really find it all that funny. There were a couple good ideas, like the main character coming up with "rules" for surviving the zombie apocalypse, but really it didn't seem all that worth it.

    This is the End I really didn't like. (http://hitchcocksworld.blogspot.ca/2014/03/its-end-of-world-as-we-know-it-and-i.html) I saw that one in the theatres and could not find a single funny moment. The only worthwhile part was Emma Watson, who was barely in it. I've actually stated on multiple occasions that This is the End would have been much better if it had been about Emma Watson and the guys it insisted on focusing on were just cameos.

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    1. I read through your post on This is The End, and we just vastly differ in our tastes in comedy. I feel as though I've grown up with Rogen and Hill and Franco and Baruchel and, especially Danny McBride, who I've followed since his earliest work in David Gordon Green's first two films. I just connect with it. The Michael Cera bit...come on, man! That is comedy gold. I fucking horse laughed at those bits.

      Zombieland was hilarious to me as well. And a good play on the zombie genre.

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  3. Great picks! Zombieland is one of my all time favourites anyway, and I loved This Is The End! I've never heard of Idiocracy but it sounds really funny!
    - Allie

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  4. I love Zombieland. Bill Murray's cameo might be the best one of all time. I also loved This is the End. Haven't seen Idiocracy, yet.

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    1. Such a genius touch, Bill Murray.

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  5. I did enjoy Zombieland even though it terrified me. I remember reading about Idiocracy and thinking 'yeh, I believe this could happen'.

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  6. Is This The End!!!! Hilarious. Love that you went this route here. I haven't seen the other two, but my buddy is always talking about Idiocricy. I have such an aversion to the 'other' Wilson though...

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    1. Thanks, man. I like both Wilsons, personally. Owen is the stronger talent. Idiocracy is stupid and smart at the same time. A rare achievement.

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  7. I've only seen the first and I didn't care for it much, though some of that has to do with my almost complete indifference to Luke Wilson. Is there a more vapid actor working today? The other two don't really look like my kind of film but I'll have to take a little deeper look at them.

    This isn't a particularly favored genre for me but I did come up with three that I've liked:

    The Planet of the Apes (1968)-The original story of a crew of astronauts who crash land in a world where a society of intelligent talking apes reign supreme. They are quickly taken prisoner and discover that humans are now subservient. Both cheesy and impressive at the same time with hambone Charlton Heston the exactly right actor in the lead.

    The Time Machine (1960)-At the turn of the 20th century H.G. Wells tells a group of friends of his time machine to their disbelief and one’s warning not to tempt the laws of providence. Wells ignores the advice and travels far into the future to find a sobering world populated by recessive humans called Eloi and strange creatures called Morlocks. This won an Oscar for its revolutionary time lapse photography.

    The World, the Flesh and the Devil (1959)-Miner Ralph Burton (Harry Belafonte) trapped for a number of days in a cave-in, emerges to find himself the seemingly lone survivor of a nuclear holocaust. Traveling to the closest large city, New York, he finds it deserted at first but eventually meets Sarah Crandall (Inger Stevens) who has also managed to survive. They form a close friendship until the appearance of a third survivor (Mel Ferrer) and tensions flair. A three person chamber piece.

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    1. I like Luke Wilson. He pops up in some good little roles every now and then. Most recently, I'm thinking of the Kristen Wiig/Bill Hader drama/comedy The Skeleton Twins, in which he plays the Wiig character's husband.

      I'm not much for this genre either. But I'm ashamed to say I've never seen The Planet of the Apes...any of them. The Time Machine has to be great. Haven't seen it, or your other pick.

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  8. I'm not gonna lie, I did really enjoy This is the End. I think I've see Zombieland but I can't work out if I've seen it or I saw The Crazies...

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  9. I saw parts of Zombieland and was laughing at the Bill Murray segment. I have not seen the other 2 but will put it on my large list of films to see

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    1. These can go down low on the list, I'm sure. These are all just good for a random comedy when they pop up.

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  10. OH my God Idiocracy. It isn't a "true" apocalypse but it goddamn sure feels like one! And the fact that it only seems more and more prescient with each passing year is just.... SO scary.

    This is the End I thought was pretty funny but also had some things that were clearly meant to be funny but rubbed me the wrong way. HARD. And I kinda hated the ending. Also one of my least favorite Jonah Hill performances and I usually hate him.

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    1. Heard that. Stupidity will be the end of the world.

      I just really dug This is the End. It never rubbed me the wrong way. Just ridiculous, over-the-top comedy. I even thought Hill was funny, though I will agree that he is the weakest in the movie.

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  11. Haven't seen "Idiocracy" I but love "Zombieland" and "This Is the End", especially "This Is the End". It's probably the best stupid film I've ever seen.

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    1. I heard that. Easily one of the best stupid movies. All of these are stupid, really.

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  12. I'm so glad you included Zombieland. That used to be a huge favorite with me and my teens. Idiocracy was recently recommended to me when I was kvetching on Facebook about the burgeoning stupidity in our society. I definitely want to check it out.

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    1. Yeah. Check it out. It doesn't totally work as a "good movie," but there is some really harsh truth in it.

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