Repo Man (1984)

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Repo Man (1984)

Post  BoG on Fri Oct 31, 2014 8:11 pm


Repo Man is truly unique - its sci-fi element is sort of on the side, a sidelight. Most of the story concerns disaffected youth, primarily young ruffian Otto (Emilio Estevez), who ends up joining a sleazy repo car outfit headed by Harry Dean Stanton after his life goes into the dumps. The film is watchable just for the colorful characters and strange turns to the plot. You expect it to be about the art of repossessing cars - and there is that - but then much of the plot diverts to some weird conspiracy involving government agents who are after a '64 Chevrolet driven by  a mad scientist, the trunk containing alien forces which vaporize anyone who dares open it. Otto also runs into a possible new girlfriend who is being pursued by the government, but true to the cynical nature of this film, she eventually betrays him.


Since most of the main characters are involved in "auto work" and the 2nd plot involves an auto possessed by alien forces, it stands to reason that the two plots will eventually converge. That's what the audience waits for and is the hook of the film. The other key character is a truly bizarre employee of the repo company, a mechanic played by Tracey Walter who  always goes off on bizarre ruminations and daft observations, some of which seems conspiracy oriented. Most of his dialog comes off as silly and not that profound, but he ends up as the one who can make meaningful contact with the possessed auto. So, in essence, the possessed auto is repossessed by the one true lunatic of the repo company. In the end, the alien auto represents escape for Otto (auto, eh?) and the Mechanic, away from the corrupt forces on Earth and into the clean environs of outer space. Oh, in case it's not clear, this is a dark comedy, directed by Alex Cox. BoG's Score: 7.5 out of 10
Repo Trivia: this was the first feature film from Cox; he followed up much later with Repo Chick (2009), not a sequel, but related
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