A punk industrial mystery play about repo men (car repossessors) who haunt the L.A. streets, freeways, and off-ramps in search of their automotive bounty. The mood of deep alienation and boredom is taken to the edge where it crosses over into an almost mystical state. Radiation and decay become agents of awakening. Emilio Estevez stars as the repo-devotee who is tutored in the fine art of sanctioned thievery by the life-hardened Harry Dean Stanton and the chemically enhanced Tracy Walter. Fox Harris plays a mutating mad scientist whose irradiated '64 Chevy Malibu becomes a kind of unholy grail the repo men are hell-bent on possessing.
Written and directed by Alex Cox. Produced by former Monkey Michael Nesmith. A great soundtrack is provided by The Circle Jerks, Iggy Pop, Black Flag, and others. (Available on MCA cassette.)
1984, Universal Pictures
Here is the TEXT POPUP for Repo Man
[Cop pulls over '64 Malibu on desert road, walks up to driver who is singing 'Clementine']
Cop: Let me see your driver's license. From out of town are ya? What ya got in the trunk?
Driver (with almost sexual pleasure) Oooooooh, you don't want to look in THERE.
(Cop opens trunk and is flash fried. Driver pulls away, singing again. "You are lost and gone forever...")
Harry Dean Stanton: "I shall not cause harm to any vehicle nor personal contents thereof, nor through inaction let that vehicle or personal contents thereof come to harm." That's the repo- code, kid. Memorize it, burn it into your mind. Not many people live by a code these days.
[Otto stands next to Miller who is burning the personal contents of confiscated cars. Otto tosses a copy of "Dioretix: The Science of Matter Over Mind" into the fire]
Miller: A lot of people don't realize what's really going on. They view life as a bunch of unconscious incidences and things. They don't realize that there is like this lattice o' coincidence that lays on top of everything. Give ya an example - show ya what I mean. Suppose ya thinkin' about a plate o' shrimp. Suddenly, someone will say somethin' like 'plate' or 'shrimp' or 'plate of shrimp' - outta the blue - no explanation. No point in lookin' for one either. It's all part of the... cosmic unconscious.
Otto: Did you do a lot of acid,
Miller? Back in the hippy days?
(soon afterwards, Otto is walking down the street and he looks at a restaurant window and sees: *Special* Plate O' Shrimp.)
"Plate O' Shrimp" is often used on The Well and Usenet when a "lattice o' coincidence" is experienced.)