Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ken Turner Blog Series: Influences and Inspirations Blog Entry #1 - SUBMARINE

"Most people think of themselves as individuals, that there's no one on the planet like them.  This thought motivates them to get out of bed, eat food, and walk around like nothings wrong.  My name is Oliver Tate." - Oliver Tate (Submarine)

I thought I'd start off the blog series with a film I saw a couple of years ago.  I think that a lot of people may not have had this film on their radar but is sure to become a cult classic.  The film is called Submarine and its the debut feature from director Richard Ayoade (you may know him as he starred in the comedy "The Watch" with Vince Vaughn) and executive produced by Ben Stiller who makes a blink and you'll miss cameo.

The film, based on the novel by Joe Dunthorne, is about Oliver Tate, a 15 year old, who finds himself with a couple of relationship problems in his young life.  He struggles with his newly formed relationship with a darkly haired girl named Jordana Bevan who he wants to have sex with for the first time and the monitoring of the crumbling marriage of his more then ordinary parents.

Submarine's deft-wit is already apparent in the initial opening quote from the film's protagonist Oliver Tate to the audience:

"My Dear Americans, The film you are about to see is a biopic of my life. The events take place, not so long ago, in a proud land called Wales. Wales is next to England, a country you pretend to treat as an equal. My homeland has produced Catherine Zeta-Jones, Tom Jones and some other people. You have not yet invaded my country and for this I thank you. Submarine is an important film. Watch it with respect. Fond regards from your protagonist, Oliver Tate." 

Here is the trailer:

It feels like a film out of the 70s ala Harold & Maude and just as timeless.  It has moments of a Woody Allen, Stanley Kubrick, Wes Anderson or Edgar Wright film.   This mashup is blended quite nicely as you get a little bit of everything you could want without everything you wouldn't.  With its clever and witty metta-narration by Oliver, this mini biopic of a film has some of the best writing, cinematography and score for an indie comedy that I've seen in recent years.  The original soundtrack music was created by Alex Turner of the Artic Monkeys.

Here is the soundtrack in its entirety avaliable on youtube:


The film stars Craig Roberts who starred in last year's Tim Burton music video for the Killers along side Winona Ryder.  Here is the music video in case you haven't seen it:

Another Burton connection is the father of Oliver Tate played by Noah Taylor who played the father to little Charlie Bucket in 2005's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

"My mother is worried I have mental problems. I found a book about teenage paranoid delusions during a routine search of my parents' bedroom." - Oliver Tate

Submarine is a film unlike no other coming-of-age coming-of-romance drama comedy made in recent years.  Check it out as soon as possible!

Next time on the Influences and Inspirations : 80's classics



Little Gothic Horrors said...

This is the first I've ever heard of this movie, although I did recognize the main actor from the Killer's video. I'll keep an eye out for it now. :)

Ken Turner said...

You'll definitely have to let me know what you think the film when you do see it. Glad I was able to bring this one onto your film radar.