|Michael Jackson: the original hard-boiled gangster.|
The poster for this says that it is, "A movie...like no other." It is exactly that.
I watched this with friends after we all had a major nostalgia attack while drinking. We started with a drinking game while watching and it slowly turned into, "drink every time WHAT THE HELL IS EVEN GOING ON."
Moonwalker is a trippy-ass nostalga-fest that has Michael Jackson running from crazy clay-mation people, turning into a motorcycle rabbit, fighting drug-dealing gangsters, and then transforming into a spaceship. Yes, you didn't dream that when you were younger(as I thought I had), this is a movie in which Michael Jackson turns into a spaceship, shoots gangsters, and flies into space.
So how does one go about reviewing a movie like Moonwalker? By narrative? By Michael Jackson-ness? By sheer WHAT THE FUCK value?
|Yes, it's official: Michael Jackson |
is a Final Fantasy character.
There is seemingly no narrative. There's a number of music videos of Michael Jackson, then tiny children recreating the Bad video, then Michael Jackson turns into a clay-mation rabbit and runs from incredibly creepy clay-mation fans, then there is an hour-long story about Michael Jackson saving small children from a drug-running Joe Pesci and then he transforms into a spaceship.
Did I mention that MICHAEL JACKSON TRANSFORMS INTO A SPACESHIP?!
The easiest thing would be to judge the Smooth Criminal segment since it's the longest and has the most...what some people would call story. Michael is living in a 1940's esque city trying to save three orphans from a 1980's esque villain(Joe Pesci as Mr. Big, the 90's-est of 90's villains) who wants to sell drugs to kids. Why this is such a master plan and why he needs to stop Michael and the orphans from telling people about it I'm not quite sure. Also he has a real affinity for spiders. Also also it appears Michael was talking care of them in a lovely green flashback, but has since abandoned them in the big city when he became a transforming gangster? Ok there's no real narrative here either.
From the animation standpoint, the stop-motion and cgi are surreal enough to transcend being dated and go right in to mind-boggling. It's good, very good considering it's hand done stop-motion from 1988(24 years ago!) and a lot of it is integrated into real-life, but it's so twisted and disgusting and almost terrifying that it doesn't fit with the catchy-jazzy Jackson tunes. It's just...look don't watch this movie while doing hard drugs ok?
|Joe Pesci, what are you even doing?!|
And can we talk about the crazy things Michael Jackson does? Other than the aforementioned spaceship transformation, he also shapeshifts into a car(why yes, there is a difference), turns into a clay-mation rabbit, then has a dance off with said clay-mation rabbit, goes on a crazy roller-coaster mind-fuck that would scare the piss out of Willy Wonka, and shapeshifts into multiple clay-mation character actors. Apperently David Bowie is not the only shape-shifting pop star.
I don't think we need to talk about the music, because it's Michael Jackson. You either love or hate Michael Jackson, and based on that is whether you'll enjoy this movie. This whole movie is basically one giant music video for a collection of songs including Bad, Smooth Criminal, Leave Me Alone and Come Together. Whether you look at this fondly through nostalgia tinted glasses or wonder why anyone would sit through this relies heavily upon how much you enjoy Michael Jackson's music.
I think the deciding factor here is if you enjoy Michael Jackson and you enjoy drinking you will enjoy Moonwalker. Extra crazy points should be awarded to anyone who has it taped on a VHS!
THE GOOD: ?????
THE BAD: ?????
THE VERDICT: ?????????????? Ok ok I guess I will give it a $$$$ merely because Michael Jackson TRANSFORMS INTO A BATDAMN SPACESHIP.
MOVIES LIKE IT: none
ONE-SCENE METAPHOR: Well there's a really touching scene where Michael takes the three orphans and explains to them JK MICHAEL JACKSON TURNS INTO A SPACESHIP AND BLOWS AWAY DRUG LORDS.