Sunday, January 12, 2020

HOT SPLICES by Mike Watt




Mike Watt is someone I have known for many, many years. I see him a minimum of twice a year at Cinema Wasteland. I have watched all of his movies and read almost all of his books. I know what you're thinking; well, this is just one of Mike's buddies so he'll write this glowing praise for this book.
Well, I have lots of friends who produce art and if I don't like it, I will let them know about it.This has never happened with anything that has been created by Mike Watt, in my opinion. The Resurrection Game is one of my favorite zombie movies that is not really a zombie movie. Abattoir (a.k.a. A Feast of Flesh) is one of the best vampire movies made in a long time.
Now we get Hot Splices. A film that maniacally embraces film as a religion, as a way of life, and, in this novel, a drug that actually immerses you in film in a way never considered before. See, movie junkies, like myself, we are fascinated by the images flickering across the screen. As a child you absorb it as a form of altered reality and it either sucks you in or it's just a movie to you. Depends on how the neurons fire I suppose. I remember as a child thinking that dream sequences were the easiest thing to film. They just found a way in Hollywood to record your dreams. Pretty cool, right? Then as film junkies get older they look for that thing that fires your neurons in a new and different way. The films of David Cronenberg or David Lynch immediately come to  mind. Alex Cox's Repo Man. Slava Tsukerman's Liquid Sky. Pretty much anything by Andy Milligan or Jess Franco.
But that's really my personal path.  
Mike Watt takes it to the next level with a movie drug; 
It's called Flixing.
Flixing is the main thrust of this book. It deals with people being able to experience a film by putting actual frames of film in their mouth and letting the emulsion dissolve. It is a fictional form of recreational drug use. I call it a drug because it does involve the ingestion of a substance that causes unnatural things to happen to your sense of perception. To those of us whose psyches as I mentioned before are directly molded by film, this takes it to another level. One that like all drugs have a dangerous side effect. Overdosing can cause physical cuts on your skin as if it was sliced open by a thing slice of celluoid.
Hot Splices also deals with  a legendary series of insane films that when combined in the proper order cause horrible, violent things to occur. But, as any movie junkie can tell you, if it was meant to be watched you should absolutely watch it. Right? Isn't it the vision of the director, baring his soul for all to see? 
But, what if the director is a madman who is attempting to do nothing more than rain chaos and death upon humanity? Is it still important enough, as a movie junkie, to watch it? Hot Splices addresses, in broad strokes, the very answer to that question. 
There are people who watch movies. There are people that experience movies. Some become obsessed with them. There are some that are considered classics regardless of genre. In Hot Splices you see what an obsession with film can cause if taken to the nth degree.
If I were to compare this to anything it would most likely be the work of Phillip K. Dick run through a David Cronenberg filter. Both men created art that is so dense. Every page or frame filled with so many thought provoking things. Author Watt brings the same density to this book and it captures you from the onset and forces you, much like a film watched in one sitting, to get to the end credits. Watt creates a living breathing alternate universe with its own pantheon of Gods of Celluoid ruled over by the majestic being Cinemagog. The passages of normality in the book creep into the edges of your brain and suck you in to accept the bizarre aspects of the novel until you realize that have been led into a place where film is all.
I read this in one setting needing to reach the end credits to experience it as it was intended. Hot Splices could, quite possibly, be the most cinematic book I have ever read.
The back of the book has three short stories that intertwine into the narrative, by referencing things that happened in the main novel. The one about actress Angel St. Satan was the saddest and my favorite.
Do you love movies? Do you love to discuss film with others? Do you think you know a lot about film? Then Hot Splices will show you wonders you could never have imagined in the world of celluloid.
Plus, it is creepy and scary.
Always a great combination

Get yours here;

HOT SPLICES by Mike Watt

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