It’s Wednesday night and I’m looking for some Aktion. That’s right Aktion, because regular action is for pussies. I picked this movie Elysium because I heard from Ricky and Jase it was real good and I’m always up for watching the guy from the Bourne movies kick some ass, even if he’s bald. The line on the poster says: “Eye for an eye… the injury inflicted is the injury to be suffered” and that’s totally true too. I used to bet on Ultimate Fighting and those guys know how to inflict. I don’t do it anymore because my girlfriend says the blood turns her off and there’s no way I’m swapping sex for a bunch of sweaty dudes squeezing each other’s heads between their legs, but the truth is the truth.
I like to write my thoughts in real time, so this is not a review like you see in the newspaper that somebody spent three freakin’ months thinking about. This is the real shit. If you can’t handle it or keep up, then I got no advice for you except to look into some special ed night courses.
So here’s what went down in Elysium: While the screen’s still black, it starts with a woman breathing heavy like she’s getting the hard plow, but it turns out she’s all upset there’s a dead guy in the corner of the bathroom. That’s a disappointment, but then I realize she’s a hooker. Now we’re talking. I am buckled in and ready to go. I’m a simple man: I like motocross, I like nachos, I like chicks of all stripes and nations, and I will play Call of Duty until my thumbs turn into doorknobs. And if a hooker shows up in the first few minutes of a movie, all boxes have already been checked.
Then she’s on a train and I had trouble hearing her talking to some roided out dude with tats like that girl Tracie who works Fridays at Bennigans. That’s okay, because I didn’t give a shit about their stupid conversation since it wasn’t happening whilst they were either fucking or fighting. Let’s move on is all I’m thinking.
Then she’s talking to another dude in his house whose her brother I think and she’s really sorry about something blahblahblah where’s the gunplay. Instead of apologizing and writing in your diary all the time, why don’t you start up a ruckus? Which is exactly what my stepdad always said. She wants to move somewhere, get out of town, and so a brother in an old-school 1970 Buick Riviera picks her up and gives her some cash. He let’s her stay at his place but only after screwing her. And then she says she’s not working the streets anymore. Which is fine with me as long as she starts shooting motherfuckers instead.
She doesn’t. She makes a phone call from a payphone and tells her roommate Jody about the dead guy. Then the ripped guy from the train at the beginning shows up, Peter, in an alley and invites her to a party to pay her to get dirty with him and his buddies. She calls him crazy and a cheesedick and then goes with him, which is exactly how it’s always worked for me. He makes her wear some shiny high heels and tells her her “every wish will be granted” and I think we’re heading for the Wizard of Oz. At a motel, Roid’s buddy looks like the douchebag from Creed. And then he starts acting like him, too, trying to rape her while the first dude goes through her purse like he’s looking for a lipstick or something. I’m half paying attention and looking up some game cheats in the other browser window when she takes her shoe and sticks it through Dr. Roid’s eye socket.
Fantastic I think, now shit’s going to get hardcore. But instead I have to watch her run away and cry about it. Lara Croft this is not.
Some nice Indian guy finds her in his car and cleans the blood off her feet and I think we’ve got us a hero. He uses super glue “like they did in Vietnam,” he says, as if that makes any sense at all. I couldn’t even get two minutes in the bathroom alone to myself when I was a kid without my Uncle Frank yapping about the war and he never mentioned Super Glue. Bugs and whores sure, but from listening to him I didn’t get the impression they were doing arts and crafts in the fucking jungle outside Saigon.
They start talking about sex and he says he’s from Peru, not India, as if that makes a difference in terms of his Vietnam War know-how. Then he gives her a sleeping bag and a place to sleep and I start to suspect that this movie isn’t Aktion at all. It looks like the kind of drama my ex-wife used to get all blubbery over. If I want to see people trying to work out their feelings and get all emotional and yell at each other, I can go back to looking in my neighbor’s back window.
Oh, I forgot to say her name’s Andrea and she wants to be a writer. I honestly don’t know if that’s important or not. All I can say is it doesn’t make her want to do kung fu and jump from fire escapes. Which reminds me that the Bourne guy hasn’t even showed up in this thing yet. Maybe he’s off somewhere shaving his head.
Whoa! The Indian-Peru guy pulls out a lowrider bike and starts letting her drive it around the warehouse he lives in. That’s cool. And a pretty nice thing to do. But then the owner of the garage with a beard shows up and calls the police on her and she has to take off on the bike. Miguel the Perunian guy is sad that she’s leaving and I want to smack him around a bit because, hey buddy, she didn’t even sleep with you anyway. Dumbass.
Then more stuff happens, none of it action, let alone Aktion. Flashbacks about her mother(?) and doing drugs and johns, some more late-night philosophy talk with the black dude, the reappearance of Peru man who lost his job and more words in her notebook: AGONY. REPOSE. TOOTH. Like she’s writing a poem. I keep thinking about turning it off when I realize I’m still watching and that for fuck’s sake, I actually care about this chick. She’s had some bad stuff go down and she really doesn’t seem like she deserves it even if she’s a druggie and a prostitute and a “fuckup,” as she says, or a stupid poet. Wait a minute, are they playing Go Fish now? They’re playing Go Fish in a motel and talking about God and death. Jesus. This is really pushing me. I’d give one of my babymakers right now just to see Bourne bust in yell “I don’t have any nines!” and stick a pencil through somebody’s tit. I’m starting to think he’s not even in this.
I won’t spoil the ending for you. That’s because I can’t remember it. I don’t press that play button without first cracking a Bud Light tallboy and 90 minutes of drinking, at least the way I do it, can put even a big guy like me in a haze. Im not sure I’m writing English anymore. Let me just say there’s an OD, and then Cyclops and the Creed singer from the motel rape show up again and they are not here to make sure she’s feeling all right. “You know, there are few things as wonderful as depth perception” one-eye-guy says all in her face with a gun, and then he’s babbling about Mr. Miyagi’s code about an eye for an eye or something. I’m lost even without the drunking. Then there’s a showdown that did not end the way I thought it would and I got a little choked up though it was probably just the cheese clump from the nachos in my throat.
I have to run and get another 12-pack so here’s the wrap-up: Basically, the main girl who played Andrea was pretty good along with the Indian guy, and the music was good and creepy, and I liked the plot all right, though a couple more car chases wouldn’t have hurt anything. Elysium is definitely not in the right genre category. But the whole thing had something to do with people being worth saving even when they’re totally screwing everything up. Which is a pretty solid morale when you think about it. And if it’s true, then Jesus himself must be looking for me.
7,000 RPMs is the weekly movie column of Randall P. Manville (RPM), an entrepreneur, bike enthusiast and freelance writer in New Castle, Delaware.
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