THX 1138

THX 1138

Before “Star Wars,” and before “Bad Movies Posing as buy cialis 10mg Star Wars,” George Lucas was a film student.

Film students tend to wear black and have interesting, creative ideas (usually involving darkness, pathos, or ironic humor); they do not invent characters such as Jar Jar Binks.

That said, since “THX 1138” was originally a short directed by Lucas while he was still at school, it requires a lot more thought than one will need on May 12, 2005*. Actually, it required a lot more thought than my brain was capable of producing, but lately I've realized that daily activities such as knitting, and walking, also require more brain power that I can muster, so take my confusion with a grain of salt.

THX shows us a bizarre, sterile, and unorganized future; I imagined it as Lucas' version of Futuristic Communism-gone-awry (as opposed to Extremely Succesful Communism, of course). Isn't awry a great word?

Did I spell it correctly? If you look at it quickly, you're like, “Yeah, awry,” but if you look again, and think about its spelling, you think, “Why isn't this pronounced AWree?” But then you look up the word on and discover that awry, c.1375, “crooked, askew” is from a- “on” wry (q.v.). And then you're like, “Oh.”

Think Communism, plus a heavily medicated populace, plus a Wizard-behind-the-green-curtain “religion”, plus Stormtrooper-robot guards with electric sticks, plus humorously inept human security guards and you've got the backdrop for THX. Add to that: dramatic pathos in the form of citizens who demedicate and realize they have horoscope aries today sign men love romantically and cannot pretend passion. emotions (a la Garden State, but grosser and involving more vomit and whacks with said electric sticks), and you've got a recipe for sharp social commentary! Or maybe not! It doesn't matter, because didn't you hear the sound those electric sticks were making? Just like light sabers!

Actually, I enjoyed this movie, even though I didn't understand why, even though everyone was drugged silly, the “villianous” character still was jealous, possesive, and obsessive. Or why, even though the calming religious figure was obviously automated, the people continued to talk to it in its absolution booths as if it were a god. Although, I suppose the society's founders realized the need for psychological catharsis even with the presence of dulling meds. The human brain is a powerful thing, but Lucas forgot about that with “Attack of the Clones.”

Intrigued? I would say THX is worth watching, but probably would be better enjoyed if you were on a combination of drugs as well. It gets a little 70s weird, like with the psychiatric ward that stretches to, seemingly, infinity, and look! There's a guy, but he's really a hologram, trying to find his way out, too. (Spoiler: there's a sad little scene at the end when the hologram can't figure out how to work an automobile. He dies. But does he really?)

Anyone know of a movie about the future that doesn't involve a deranged de-evolution of society?

* note: I did not know the premiere date off the top of my head; I had to look it up on Beware! Apparently love of Star Wars causes one to become incapable of using punctuation on message boards: “we know that the emperor does in fact become the emperor in this movie. i would think that perhaps he does so after the jedi confront him and then he is able to say the jedi cannont help us anymore infact they are evil, they tried to kill me,after all i have done for this democracy, what i am going to do is create an imperial senate and i am going to rule as your emperor. then vader/anakin fights obi and looses. he wakes up in the black suit the empire is already born.”


5 thoughts on “THX 1138

  • 11/18/2004 at 2:03 pm

    re: “but grosser and involving more vomit and whacks with said electric sticks”
    are these “sick sticks” like in Minority Report, or are people vomiting due to withdrawal?
    just curious.

  • 11/18/2004 at 2:17 pm

    Good question — no, the sticks are weapons, used to punish the people who are already retching due to withdrawal.

  • 11/18/2004 at 11:28 pm

    How about “Titan AE”? Society wasn’t “de-evolved”, it was “destroyed”. And getting to name your own planet is pretty cool.

  • 11/19/2004 at 5:18 pm

    Excellent Review. I especially like the references to your personal experience of writing the review (ie the awry discussion). I look forward to more reviews by you, because you rock.

  • 11/24/2004 at 7:35 am

    Yee Haw! A rollercoaster ride of review fantastica!

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