There is an immortal question that has been asked since questions have been invented, and since people have discerned that existence must have a point. We have called this question “Why”, and it has become the most potent question that we have ever invented. Socrates refined it. And it has indeed been refined time and time again over history, until it ends up on my lap every time I watch a movie. The types of movies I like always have a sort of intangible meaning, thanks to the question of “Why”—because if there’s one thing that I absolutely love in movies, it’s the part where you cry out in genuine adrenaline disbelief, “Why is this happening?!” Godmonster of Indian Flats. Hoo boy.
There’s this town out in Nevada. There’s a sheep rancher who lives out in the desert—one day he has a psychedelic vision, and he wakes up right next to something that looks like a deformed sheep embryo. A scientist and his hippie girl assistant show up to take the embryo and examine it; they discover that it has been mutated by exposure to phosphorous gases that came out of one of the town’s old mines. Meanwhile, a black real estate agent named Barnstable shows up to buy some of the land in the area. The town’s old white farts won’t stand for it, so they drum up false allegations against Barnstable, and then try to kill him. The segments that go back and forth between Barnstable and the townspeople make up most of the movie. When they try to kill him, they free the mutant sheep monster, which goes on a rampage, though it’s a sort of King Kong sort of rampage—the scientist’s hippie assistant tries to help it, believing it to be a gentle beast, but a bunch of vigilantes capture it. At the end, it’s revealed the main doughy white guy, Mayor Silverdale, has pushed aside Barnstable so he can buy the entire town for himself. His mistake is when he puts the monster on display to garner more money to fill his coffers. It is at that point that we reach the End.
The End is one of the best sequences that I have screamed “Why is this happening?!” to. It should be trademarked by someone ambitious. They’ll make a million. It should be lauded as one of the best pieces in cinema next to all the famous scenes from Doctor Strangelove.* I can’t explain it. Let’s just say…swift, sudden, climactic insanity. Crowds turn rabid. People literally go insane for nothing in two seconds. Main characters killed off in less time than that, with no remorse. An entire town turns into a sea of ashes. Symbolism runs rampant (I feel like this is a nuke scene and I swear I saw the shadow of at least one penis). The monster explodes. People yell at garbage. A sequel is set up. I am still waiting for Son of Godmonster. Would the phrase “Oh my Godmonster” be inappropriate to add to my repertoire?
Ye Gods, what a remarkable movie! It’s so boring for the first part, and then suddenly the Crazy Juice gets going and everything goes all PDC** and stuff. I love it. It’s still one of those movies, though, which demands my “you make the call” suggestion at the end of the review. But it is a movie I recommend. You know that “flame of laughter” which you kind of feel, like heartburn, after one of those no-doubt life-extending laughs? Yeah, it’s about an hour after the credits ended, and I still have that. Fantastic ending, and perhaps even (sort of) some good momentum leading up to it.*** So, yeah…you make the call.
*I do happen to love me some Doctor Strangelove.
** PDC means “Pretty Darn Crazy”. I realize that acronyms are dumb, but that’s why I’m encouraged to use them.
*** By “good” I mean “boring”. The sentence works either way.