Friday, March 27, 2015

Movie Recommendation


Radio Free Albemuth had me at "based on the novel by Philip K. Dick."

The critics didn't care much for it (36% critic approval v. 47% audience score at Rotten Tomatoes; critic score of 35 at Metacritic). Total box office of less than $10k, about half of that on its opening weekend on 10 screens, after an IMDB-estimated production budget of $3.6 million.

But I like it.

The word "verisimilitude" refers to "the appearance of truth; the quality of seeming to be true."

I operate on a similar concept with respect to screen adaptations of stories by Philip K. Dick. "PhilipKDickitude" refers to "the appearance of actually trying to tell the story the way Philip K. Dick was trying to tell it when he wrote it; the quality of an actual Philip K. Dick story on screen, not just a formulaic blockbuster hopeful that riffs on a few elements of said story."

Nothing against the blockbuster type movies, mind you. I enjoyed Blade Runner (based on Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?) and Minority ReportPaycheck and Adjustment Bureau (based on "Adjustment Team") were okay as well; the two adaptations of "We Can Remember it for You Wholesale" -- rebranded as Total Recall -- well, meh.

But my two favorite Philip K. Dick adaptations so far are this one and A Scanner Darkly.

No spoilers for those of you who haven't read the novel or seen the film yet. Cool casting, though. Alanis Morissette plays Sadassa Silvia. Scott Wilson (too many roles to go into, but young'uns will recognize him as Virgil Herschel from The Walking Dead) is President Ferris F. Fremont). Some other faces you may recognize.

Radio Free Albemuth is available on Netflix. Probably other places too, but Netflix is where I noticed it.

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