Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

Classical Cult 

Are you a veteran of the psychic wars?

Ivan Reitman's cult animated film Heavy Metal has been dismissed for being both juvenile and an anachronism, but for fans of both the magazine that inspired it and classic animation, neither charge sticks. Rife with violence and full-frontal nudity, the film is no more puerile than Homer's Odyssey in subject matter or storytelling — folks get naked and fight like hell in both, after all. Released in a post-Star Wars world (1981, which seems so long ago), Heavy Metal does seem slightly off visually; that's a credit to the hand-done animation, which is a lost art in this CGI post-production era. The plot, an anthology of short stories linked by the framing narrative of the Loc-Nar, an orb of ultimate evil that corrupts all who encounter it, means the visual style changes throughout the film to emulate the source stories of artists whose work appeared in the magazine. So Richard Corben's high-fantasy Den section features voluptuous colors and nightmarish scenery, while Angus McKie's sardonic science fiction comedy So Beautiful, So Dangerous gets a hard-edged realism. Throw in the music of Blue Oyster Cult, Dio-era Black Sabbath and Journey (during a love scene, of course) and the score by Elmer Bernstein and you have a weirdly satisfying and effective melding of the cult and the classical. All this and voice talent by SCTV alumni John Candy, Eugene Levy and Joe Flaherty — it's an epic that transcends time and space. And clothing. The Webster Film Series presents Heavy Metal as this month's Strange Brew film at 8 p.m. tonight at the Schlafly Bottleworks (7260 Southwest Avenue; 314-2337 or www.schlafly.com). Tickets are $4.
Wed., March 4, 2009

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Speaking of...

Latest in Night & Day

Read the Digital Print Issue

June 9, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2021 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation