Sunday, October 11, 2015

Movie Review: "Maximum Overdrive" (1986)

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Movie"Maxmum Overdrive"
Director: Stephen King
Year: 1986
Rating: R
Running Time: 1 hour, 37 minutes

When the earth is caught in the cosmic radiation of a comet's tail, all of the mechanical devices on the planet come to life and go on a murderous rampage, even big rig trucks.

As the comet passes over and the machines first come to life, the chaos begins with an ATM calling the film's writer and director Stephen King an asshole. By the time many people actually sit through this film, they might agree with the ATM for him having made it in the first place. This is the only film he ever directed, even though much of his other work has been adapted into film and directed by others. This being said, we love Stephen King, and as ridiculous as the whole concept of this movie is, it still is pretty fun and entertaining if not for the sheer absurdity of it all. As the machines start their murderous rampage, the film focuses in on a small group of people at a local truck stop. Busboy and ex-con Bill Robinson, played by Emilio Estevez in all his 80's glory, takes the leadership role of this small group as he is the one willing to risk his neck to help others. One thing's for certain, the acting in this movie is borderline godawful. Estevez has never really been known as a fabulous actor, and maybe it's just the source material and script he had to work with, but every single word delivered here seems overly cheesy. They are trapped inside the diner at the truck stop as a troupe of maniac big rigs circle the parking lot and gas pumps, just waiting to run down anyone who steps foot off the premises. The trucks have no real leader and seem to work as a hive collective, but much of the badassery falls on a toy company's truck with a cool green goblin face on its grill. Meanwhile, others around town are being killed by the likes of soda can vending machines, hair dryers, draw bridges, and a host of other mechanical and electric contraptions in often cheesy but bloody and gory fashions. The explanation as to why all these things come to life is rather vague. How normal, completely inanimate objects like a walkman manage the physics of motion and murder is never really explained, but sometimes, you just have to say "screw it, this is fun!" Because let us tell you, it is. It's not so fun that it's one of the best movies we've ever seen, but we'll be damned if it isn't amusing and enjoyable if you've got 97 minutes to kill (no pun intended). And with a bitchin' AC/DC soundtrack to score the entire film, prompting the band's 90's resurrection and subsequently more commercial success, really, what's not to love?! As long as Stephen King sticks to writing his brilliant novels and novellas instead of directing, we're on board.

My Rating: 6/10
BigJ's Rating: 6/10
IMDB's Rating: 5.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 17%
Do we recommend this movie: Sure, why not?
Two years ago, we were watching: "It"

One year ago, we were watching: "American Psycho"

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