Thursday, August 11, 2016

They Live (VHS, 1988/89)

Horror master John Carpenter (Halloween, The Thing) directs this action-packed sci-fi thriller about one man's battle against aliens who are systematically gaining control of the earth. Rugged Roddy Piper stars as the loner who stumbles upon a terrifying discovery: goulish creatures are masquerading as humans while they lull the public into submission through subliminal advertising messages. Only specially made sunglasses make the deadly truth visible. Visionary director John Carpenter creates this world that is not unlike today's society. Glued to the television and void of independent thought, he shows us a human race that resembles cattle in the fields waiting for the farmer's next decision. Suspenseful science-fiction and heart-pounding action highlights this masterfully ironic and startling tale co-starring Keith David and Meg Foster.

This was a beautiful film that carries with it a heavy burden of showing us the truth of our world. While we may giggle and laugh at this "created" society, there are some truths to what Carpenter is showing. He gives us warnings and answers if we choose to listen. I was not expecting such a high caliber of emotion to go into a film like this, and was utterly surprised by the experience. Perhaps it is the packaging, perhaps it is because our culture has not adapted well to the horror/sci-fi genre yet, but everyone should experience this film once. I recommend it for anyone that enjoyed The Matrix and want to see more about the structure of our society. Created well before The Matrix, Carpenter uses aliens to demonstrate the power of the media and the superpowers behind the scenes. This film carries themes that are still relevant today.

The original American VHS release by MCA Home Video for video rental in 1989 featured a digitally recorded version of the film and was packaged in a paper cover which featured the poster artwork. A second U.S. VHS printing, distributed by Goodtimes Video, was released on May 18, 1999. This is the more sought for (1st issue original) VHS distributed by MCA Home Video. What makes this particular VHS even more sought for is, it is still sealed. That's right... brand new. However, on the right side of the VHS there is a cut/tear through the UPC barcode. It could have been done by the store for stock purposes. On the left side of the VHS, MCA Home Video logo is stamped/watermarked on the plastic. So, if you are like me... a diehard VHS collector looking to replace that old worn out rental. Look no further. Rare!

Ebay: They Live (VHS, 1988/89) MCA Home Video - $34.99 (NEW)

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