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Rubber

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I like the IDEA of this film more than I like the finished film itself, but I will say this: the director sure knows how to photograph this tire. It's amazing how much menace, how much pathos, how much character he can get out of this basically inanimate object. (Yes, yes, it does roll, so it's arguably animate in THAT sense, at least -- but does it have any moving parts? does it have ANYTHING, really, that makes it more than a glorified circle?)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=voUw2Hh1K0A

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Okay, I have to see it. Even if it isn't that good--and it probably isn't--the concept is way too fun.

Edited by Ryan H.

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Posted · Report post

Years ago, Stef, Thom and I were trying to figure out how to make a similar film about a piece of meat. It was going to be called Mad Meat.

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This is a brilliant idea. Is it supposed to be feature-length? I can't think of anything more needed right now, and I'm absolutely serious about that. We will always have regular old narrative films that are wonderful to sit in and take, for instance The King's Speech, The Fighter. But every once in a while, things need to be shaken up a bit, and sorry but, for me anyway, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and all its spinoffs just don't cut it.

Years ago, Stef, Thom and I were trying to figure out how to make a similar film about a piece of meat. It was going to be called Mad Meat.

I remember you had an idea for making the meat move with fishing wire that we were going to digitally erase later. It could have been awesome, but instead you ended up dressed as Sherlock Holmes and I ended up in white tights, with wings and a wand.

I missed doing Mad Meat, but wouldn't trade that experience for anything in the world.

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Posted · Report post

If there is any justice in the world, this will be shown on a double bill with Bahrani/Herzog's Plastic Bag.

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Posted · Report post

also reminds me of eleanor antin's 100 boots photographic series, just with more overt menace

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Posted · Report post

Region 1 DVD release date June 7.

Available from Netflix same day.

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Posted · Report post

I agree with Peter: The idea is fantastic. And I feel funny complaining that it isn't very well made, since the execution is deliberately amateurish and low budget. The problem is, the joke gets old fast, and since everything is deliberately being played badly, there's not much to hold our attention once the joke gets old. I would love to have seen this idea taken on by Charlie Kaufman or the Coens or somebody with a bigger imagination about how to make the film more worthwhile.

Still, it's worth a look.

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Posted · Report post

Yeah...it has some nice quirks...a steady and stronger creative team might have made something brilliantly quirky.

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I apparently didn't mention this above, but as I recall, one sign of how this movie lost my interest as it progressed was this: In the very first scene, a guy in a policeman's uniform gives a funny, absurd little speech which gave me hope that the movie would be a lot of fun. And during the end credits, they replay this scene from an alternate angle... and I just didn't care any more. That saddened me, as I had hoped that I could return to that opening scene some day and get a kick out of it again.

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Posted · Report post

Agreed. The repeated speech only accentuated how few ideas the movie really had.

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This is in contrast to the Thom/Persona/Leary Mad Meat version of this story, which was eerily similar to this plot, but chock full of ideas about love, community, and that lonely little place inside of us all.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

The repeated speech only accentuated how few ideas the movie really had.

None of them were complete ideas, either ... kind of like th

...

I still prefer Attack of the Killer Tomatoes.

Edited by mrmando

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Posted · Report post

This is in contrast to the Thom/Persona/Leary Mad Meat version of this story, which was eerily similar to this plot, but chock full of ideas about love, community, and that lonely little place inside of us all.

I believe we were going to have an altar call and pass the bucket at the ending credits.

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This is in contrast to the Thom/Persona/Leary Mad Meat version of this story, which was eerily similar to this plot, but chock full of ideas about love, community, and that lonely little place inside of us all.

I remember we were going to setup the story with a bit of time-lapse. It would have been fantastic.

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Posted · Report post

Apparently, we could have been famous. This could have been our break. Frankly, I think the concept works better with meat and a good, solid backstory.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Here is what I have from my notes:

INT: KITCHEN OF NONDESCRIPT APARTMENT - Morning

PAN around from window of kitchen to refrigerator. A ray of early morning light shifts across the chipped white windowsill, passes along the gold-flecked formica table top, scoots past the sink and three three robin's egg blue bakelite coffee mugs drying next to it, and finally comes to rest on the chrome handle of the freezer. The DOOR unexpectedly opens. Barely LIT by the early morning sun we can see movement within. The SCRAPE of ice.

Struggling free from the frosty bonds of the freezer one 17 ounce Porterhouse steak wrapped loosely in white butcher paper limps from within.

SLOW MOTION tracking the MEAT as it falls exhaustedly to the linoleum floor. MEAT hits the floor, flakes of ice clatter about. MEAT begins to thaw.

Edited by M. Leary

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Posted · Report post

Here is what I have from my notes:

INT: KITCHEN OF NONDESCRIPT APARTMENT - Morning

PAN around from window of kitchen to refrigerator. A ray of early morning light shifts across the chipped white windowsill, passes along the gold-flecked formica table top, scoots past sink and three three robin's egg blue bakelite coffee mugs drying next to it, and finally comes to rest on the chrome handle of the freezer. The DOOR unexpectedly opens. Barely LIT by the early morning sun we can see movement within. The SCRAPE of ice.

Struggling free from the frosty bonds of the freezer one 17 ounce Porterhouse steak wrapped loosely in white butcher paper limps from within.

SLOW MOTION tracking the MEAT as it falls to the linoleum floor as if exhausted. MEAT hits the floor, flakes of ice clatter about. MEAT begins to thaw.

If for nothing else, this NEEDS to be filmed as a teaser trailer.

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Posted · Report post

The trailer never got made, but the t-shirts did:

browse_madmeat_store.jpg

How perfect that my 7,000th post would come in the form of a hijacking. :)

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How perfect that my 7,000th post would come in the form of a hijacking. :)

Congratulations, Stef. 7,000 of the site's most intriguing posts.

Edited by Overstreet

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Posted · Report post

Okay. This is streaming on Netflix so...get to it before you cancel your subscription for the rate hike!

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Thom wrote:

: Okay. This is streaming on Netflix so...get to it before you cancel your subscription for the rate hike!

On the one hand: not streaming in Canada. On the other hand: no rate hike in Canada.

Incidentally, Netflix.ca's recommended alternatives are 2 Days in Paris and The Widow of Saint-Pierre. Because the director of Rubber is French, I'm guessing.

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Posted · Report post

No plans to cancel Netflix due to the rate hike. Already watched Rubber.

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Posted · Report post

Watched this yesterday, and can't really add anything more to what has already been said. As Peter said, the director really knows how to get a lot out of this tire! I'm curious to know how they achieved some of the shots, they're much too streamlined to have just been a lucky series of "roll the tire and track it" moments. I'm not up on my French pronunciations, but I'm guessing that director Quenitn Dupieux's last name is pronounced "Dupe you". I wonder how many people have felt he did just that after watching this film.

BTW, looking back through this thread at the Mad Meat comments, I thought you all might get a kick out of the fact that Quentin Dupieux's previous film was titled Steak. Different concept, though.

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I saw this a while ago, loved it, saw the reactions here and geared up to defend it. Then I forgot. Rubber hasn't lasted well in my memory, and while I laughed hard during the film, most of my enjoyment came from the ideas rather than the execution. That said, I think the scene during the end credits has been judged unfairly. Possible spoilers, so...

Several here and elsewhere have cited the repeat of the monologue from the film's beginning as proof that the film runs out of ideas and resorts to repetition to pad its running length. I don't think this is the case, and not only because the scene is played over the end credits (thus not extending the film at all). There's a shot during the speech that reveals that the area previously occupied by an audience is now empty. IIRC, the folding chairs are still there, but nobody is sitting in them. Thus, the scene takes place after (or before, I guess) the opening of the film, implying either that a practice run is taking place or (my preferred reading) that the events of the film are part of a cycle that continues whether or not an audience is present, with the people who die during the film resurrected for the purposes of being killed again. Elevating the story of a murderous, lonely, animated tire to some sort of eternal cosmic cycle is a ridiculous idea that is very much in keeping with the spirit of the film and a joke that only works with the end scene in place. The speech itself, though, diminishes in its ability to make me laugh by the end, so maybe replaying it, even in the modified context, was a misjudgment.

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