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Repo: The Genetic Opera

Genre: , ,

Cast: Alexa Vega, Paul Sorvino, Anthony Head, Sarah Brightman, Paris Hilton, Bill Moseley, Nivek Ogre, Terrance Zdunich, Sarah Power

Director: Darren Lynn Bousman

Rated: R

Review By:
Tom Herrmann

Suny Purchase '11

"When life gives you lemons, you clone those lemons and make super-lemons." -Clone High

Release Date: January 20th, 2009
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Overall Grade: C

Repo: The Genetic Opera

Review By: Tom Herrmann

Repo! The Genetic Opera

Movie Grade: C

DVD Features Grade: C

Overall Grade: C

This was a strange one. I couldn't decide throughout the entire movie if I liked it or not. Repo! The Genetic Opera was made in an attempt to combine the styles of Rocky Horror Picture Show and Blade Runner. To answer the question on everyone's mind, no I'm not making that up.

Repo! takes place in the grim future where people can buy organs from corporations and have surgeries as fashion statements, and the repossession of organs has been legalized. At the center of this entire organ dealing is the evil corporation GeneCo. GeneCo separates itself from the futuristic corporations like Cyberdyne that we all know and fear by"¦ well they don't really. They pull the same old "corporations are bad" allegory with the non-stop advertisements, and the seemingly endless power they have. But if there is one thing that Repo! isn't, its generic. If there is one thing Repo! is on the other hand, it's poorly written, but I'll get to that later.

The plot revolves around the relationship of Shilo Wallace’s (Alexa Vega) and her father Nathan (Anthony Stewart Head), and their connection with Rotti Largo (Paul Sorvino) who runs GeneCo and wants to find someone to leave his company to before he dies. As the film progresses they begin to tie in these three characters and introduce Rotti's children Luigi Largo (Bill Moseley), Pavi Largo (Nivek Ogre), and Amanda Sweet (Paris Hilton), and Shilo's godmother Blind Mag (Sarah Brightman). There is also a character just called Graverobber (Terrance Zdunich), but he just catches the audience and some characters up on background information, and doesn't really affect the story.

Repo! could possibly be the campiest thing I have seen since Adam West as Batman. The way everything is portrayed is so obviously straying from reality. This made Repo! somewhat bearable in the weaker parts of the movie.

To be honest I wanted to shut it off somewhere around half way through. As original as it is, that doesn't make up for the fact that the movie is overly ridiculous. Having a horror opera is difficult but it can be done with poise. Just look at Sweeney Todd. That was a gruesome film, that isn't what made it popular though. It was well received because it was well written and didn't try and use it's bizarreness to compensate for a lack of talent. There were some good singers and actors, like Sorvino, Brightman, and Vega who all belted out their share of amazing notes. No one else seemed to be on their level though.

Also the cast was very random. They had Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer with Head, the girl from the Spy Kids movies with Vega, and Paris Hilton. The cast seems more like one from a bad season of the Serial Life. Sorry, I've gotten

off track.

The special features don't do much to help this one out either. Just a little bit about the behind the scenes. The only thing I felt satisfied hearing the features was that they were going for a Rocky Horror, Blade Runner feel because that was my guess form the beginning. The Legal Assassin feature did give some background on how they came up with the Repo-Man look which was somewhat interesting.

Even with all of that said I have a strange feeling that this will without a doubt become a cult classic. People hated Rocky Horror Picture Show when it was first released and that has one of the largest cult followings I have ever heard of. Over time I think I will end up liking this weird take on a rock opera. Even with all of its shortcomings and the fact that it seems like it was directed by those goth kids on South Park, I just can't stop thinking that this will be the next Rocky Horror.

Movie Grade: C

DVD Features Grade: C

Overall Grade: C

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