Reviewing Damon Packard films is a tremendous thrill and an incredible struggle all at once. You never know what exactly you’re gonna get from the guy and when it’s finally in front of you, it’s often hard to tell just what the hell it is. An avid underground film nerd, I’m always eager to see what he has to offer next. But then comes the review and it’s like trying to describe a nervous breakdown – Dennis Przywara’s review of Reflections of Evil is a great example of this. Writing up Packard’s latest, “Spacedisco One” presents the same challenge.
So…”Spacedisco One” is a sequel to both “Logan’s Run” and “1984” at the same time with Orwell’s Winston Smith running into the daughters of Logan 5 and Francis 7 as they’re busy running about a park firing off laser beams at one another. It’s not until they meet that Winston realizes they’re actually all fictional characters in a movie currently being shot by a filmmaker who, like many others, has run out of ideas and is just throwing a bunch of cool s**t together, hoping it sticks. When not discussing “Battlestar Galactica” with Stargirl 7 and Francis 8, Winston makes frequent visits to the Ministry of Truth – known to you and I as Universal Citywalk. It’s here where people gather to worship at a giant video screen playing an endless stream of reality television nonsense, the more cruel and unsavory the better. So, this is largely what happens in “Spacedisco One.” Oh yeah, did I mention the roller rink in space that people have to skate on to get to Earth? Yeah, there’s that, too.
Those looking for an epic disco adventure will not find it here, apart from a purely dazzling opening title sequence set to the tune of Stephanie Mills’ “Never Knew Love Like This Before,” featuring psychedelically altered vintage roller disco footage. Those with sharp eyes (and good taste) will also be able to spot the Disco Godfather himself amongst the light show.
And while “Spacedisco One” is a more serious film than many of Packard’s previous efforts, fans won’t be disappointed as it still contains plenty of pop culture smearing as he incorporates clips from various films and TV shows into his own work. And, yes, there are also plenty of random explosions and people running wildly about. And it’s all to illustrate how ugly this world has gotten, where another person’s anguish is everyone’s entertainment and where fresh ideas have all dried up and blown away, which nobody seems to care much about in today’s world. And why should anyone when being mindless shitheads to one another is rewarded and recycling pop culture creates mega-careers? Packard’s PO’d in this film and his anger gives us yet another unique viewing experience. Put yo weight on it!
Come on out for the 2007 Hollywood Horror, Sci-Fi and Fantasy Film Festival screening of “Spacedisco One” at the Arclight Cinemas tonight, October 19, at midnight!