Christmas on Mars: A Fantastical Film Freakout Featuring the Flaming Lips
Psychedelic rock band the Flaming Lips present Christmas on Mars: A Fantastical Film Freakout Featuring the Flaming Lips, a glorious science fiction film that marks the directorial debut of the Lips' visionary frontman Wayne Coyne. Seven years in the making, Christmas on Mars features original music by the Flaming Lips ("The greatest U.S. band today" - The Guardian), with acting performances by all band members, and many others from their Oklahoma City-based team. Comedian Fred Armisen (Saturday Night Live) and actor Adam Goldberg (Dazed and Confused, Two Days in Paris) also
appear, as does performer Steve Burns of the band Steve Burns and the Struggle (who had also appeared in children's television show Blue's Clues). Bradley Beesley and George Salisbury co-directed the movie with Mr. Coyne.
It's Christmastime, and the colonization of Mars is underway. However, when an oxygen generator and a gravity control pod malfunction, Major Syrtis (the Lips' Steven Drozd) and his team (including the Lips' Michael Ivins) fear the worst. Syrtis also hallucinates about the birth of a baby, and many other strange things. Meanwhile, a compassionate alien superbeing (Coyne) arrives, inspiring and helping the isolated astronauts.
In New York City, Christmas on Mars screens in a custom-designed screening room within the Kraine Theater of the KGB Complex at 85 East Fourth Street. A speakeasy during Prohibition and a Ukrainian Socialist Social Club during the Cold War, the KGB Complex features two theater spaces, a comedy club, and a bar. For Christmas on Mars, Cinema Purgatorio is converting the KGB's Kraine Theatre into a superb screening room with high definition video and the custom designed Zeta Bootis Mega Supersonic Super-Sound Surround System, which the Flaming Lips created specifically for this film.
So Now We Know How Charlie Brown,The Grinch & The Dallas Cowboys Found The True Meaning Of Christmas, 21 November 2008
Okay. To try & sum this trippy little film up in (at least)one sentence: Take a jigger of Andre Tarkovsky's original Russian version of 'Solaris',mix in a dash of David Lynch's 'Eraserhead',fold in a pinch of '2001:A Space Oddyssey',add elements of John Carpenter's 'Dark Star',and just a tiny bit of 'Tetsuo:The Iron Man',shake well,pour into your cerebral cortex (with plenty of LSD),and Shazam, you have 'Christmas On Mars'. This is the absolute midnight cult film (if any cinemas had half a brain to screen midnight films,these days). This is the first feature film from the Oklahoma based rock band, the Flaming Lips. Wayne Coyne,who co writes the screenplay & co directs the film, also has a role as a space alien who never so much as speaks a word, but you somehow know exactly what he/it means. The film also features acting (?) performances by fellow Lips member,Steven Drozd as a freaked out astronaut,as well as other members of the band (and also Isaac Brock from Modest Mouse)in other roles. This film was shot over something like seven years, on a shoestring budget. Although there is no concert appearances by the band,the music & sound design was performed by the Flaming Lips (mostly a lot of deep space ambient sound). I especially admired the films visual look (which was filmed mostly in high contrast black & white with psychedelic colour bursts from time to time). This is the kind of film that will be a treat for some viewers (mostly Flaming Lips fans,who the band eternally thank at the film's conclusion), and a crashing bore to others (those who have no tolerance for something really different). The choice is yours. No MPAA rating here, but would easily snag an "R", due to course language, and some really surreal pseudo/quasi pornographic hallucination sequences. Leave the little one's home (who would probably be bored and/or confused out of their skulls,anyway).
Title: Christmas on Mars
Alt Titles :
Runtime: 82 mins
User Rating: 6.1
Tagline: Eat your own spaceship.
Eat your own spaceship.
A Psychological Fantasy Adventure Featuring The Flaming Lips
• Wayne Coyne
• Bradley Beesley (co-director)
• George Salisbury (co-director)
• Wayne Coyne writer
• The Flaming Lips
Plot Outline: No plot summary available
• Steven Drozd as Major Syrtis
• Wayne Coyne as The Martian
• Steve Burns as Major Lowell
• Fred Armisen as Philosophical and Hymn-Singing Astronaut
• Scott Booker as Psychiatrist
• Al Cory as
• Dennis Coyne as
• Kenny Coyne as
• Mark DeGraffenried as
• Adam Goldberg as Mars Psychiatrist
• Freddy Harth as
• Peter Hermes as
• Josh Higgins as
• Michael Ivins as Sunglasses-wearing Astronaut
• Michelle Martin-Coyne as Mother
• Mark Miks as
• Jimmy Pike as Faithless Astronaut
• Mark Schaper as
• Kliph Scurlock as Astronaut Confronting Cosmic Reality
• Mikey Thompson as