Lets have a moment of silence in memory of RadioFree Whistler, the "pirate" radio station busted last week by Industry Canada. By far the coolest and most exciting thing that happened to Whistler in quite a while, RadioFree Whistler was just a few people having fun and bringing happiness to all of us that would rather listen to static than Mountain FM. And now theyre gone, shut down for being too real, or too fun, or too rock and roll.
Ah well, so be it, but lets not go so softly into the now-quiet night. Instead lets take a look at the best pirate radio movie of all time, Allan Moyles 1990 classic Pump Up the Volume.
Perhaps the quintessential teenage angst movie, Pump Up the Volume stars Christian Slater as a shy, nerdy kid living in small town Arizona. His parents are sell-outs, relinquishing their dreams for a bigger paycheque and occupational glory. His school system is draconian, headed by a tyrannical principal and her gestapo-ish hall monitor. But every night at 10 p.m. Slater takes over the airwaves, broadcasting from his basement and tackling all that sucks about being young and bored. Of course all the other disassociated youth rally behind him and soon Happy Harry Hard-on (as he calls himself) is hunted like a criminal and shut down. I miss teenage angst.
Pump Up the Volume is a true rock and roll movie about sticking it to the man and letting your own voice out. It sucks to be a kid but surviving is the point. Slater acts phenomenally and this movie establishes him as the leading anti-establishment actor of his day. Along with 1989s Heathers , Pump Up the Volume is the main reason why every girl aged 21-30 still remembers being in love with Christian Slater. If youre in high school and havent seen this yet, go get it now. And for those of us that did see it long ago, rent it again and shed a tear for RadioFree Whistler, The Man wins again.
As far as the theatres go, its Whistler Film Festival Dec 4-7; check it out. As well, the Village Eight is bringing in The Last Samurai starring Tom Cruise. No its not a comedy, Cruise plays an 1870s U.S. civil war hero brought to Japan to modernize the Japanese army and help them fight some renegade samurai. He loses his first battle, gets captured by samurai and in their company learns all about honour and "an intriguing people such discipline." Its like Dances with Wolves with swords and the three gory battles are placed perfectly to keep you from getting too bored.
But hang on. Any movie with Samurai and Ninjas cant be all that bad. Tom Cruise sucks, but he had to learn swordplay for this movie and he turns out to be quite a pupil. Im sure he couldnt beat Uma Thurmans character In Kill Bill but he does all right.
But who cares about that. Goodbye pirate radio, we miss you and youre far cooler than Tom Cruise or Christmas or the Olympics. 105.5 forever.
At Rainbow Theatre Dec. 5-7: Whistler Film Festival. Dec. 8-11: Scary Movie 3, Kill Bill.
At Village 8 Dec. 5-7: Whistler Film Festival. Dec. 5-11: The Last Samurai, Timeline, The Haunted Mansion, Missing, Elf, Dr. Seuss Cat in the Hat, Love Actually, Master & Commander, Gothika.