James Merendino, anyone? If the name rings any sort of bell for you, he is the writer/director of the cult classic, SLC Punk! If you’ve never had the viewing pleasure of SLC Punk!, I will post an Amazon link at the end of this blog which will direct you to the page where you could rent/buy this film. With this one folks, I would click the ‘BUY’ option and then proceed to the Checkout (One-stop shopping. Thanks Amazon!) SLC Punk! stars Matthew Lillard, star of the first installment of the movie franchise, Scream and those stupid Scooby Doo movies (Clearly, he did those movies for the money, because, come on now! Scooby Doo? It’s about a fucking dog who can speak, but with a really fucked up speech impediment, who gets followed around by people, which is ironic when you think about it. A dog who walks people? But anyway, this dog and these people solve crimes involving ghosts, who happen to be real people at the end, but yeah, that Matthew Lillard) as the film’s main protagonist, Stevo and his friend Heroin Bob (who doesn’t do heroin or any drug for that matter. Bob just likes to drink.) played by Michael A. Goorjian (Party Of Five).
SLC Punk! takes place in a 1985 Salt Lake City, Utah and the story revolves around the last gasp of true punk rockdom in the form of lifelong friends, Stevo and Heroin Bob. SLC Punk! is a coming of age story where events that occur in the film bring about the dissolution of childhood (punk rock ideals: anarchy, chaos, no rules, no government) in our protagonist, Stevo, who goes through a series of situations that leads to his awakened adolescence by the end of the film. That’s the movie in a nutshell. The film ends on a somewhat downer note, but it serves its purpose. It’s a film about growing up and as we all know, growing up sucks, but it’s a fact of life that we must all face. I ask you now: Does this movie sounds like there’s any room left for a sequel? No, right? And that’s my thinking exactly. But alas… I can’t even bring myself to finish the sentence.
SLC Punk! is a coming of age story where events that occur in the film bring about the dissolution of childhood.
James Merendino is in the pre-production stages of the sequel as we speak. Matthew Lillard even had the audacity to tweet how he was on a plane flying somewhere reading the script to what’s being called Punk’s Dead: SLC Punk! 2. If he agrees to do the movie, I don’t know which mistake is worse, Scooby Doo or a sequel to what should be a sequel-less movie. This is a George Lucas faux pas if I ever saw one. George Lucas single-handedly destroyed one of the greatest trilogies known to Man. This is history repeating itself! Punk’s Dead should never see the light of day. There’s simply no need. Why tarnish a good thing by building upon a film that’s already so satisfyingly complete?
Why tarnish a good thing by building upon a film that’s already so satisfyingly complete?
Do I really need to see what middle-aged Stevo is up to now? Better question, do I care? Nope. Would anybody else who’s seen the original care to know what Stevo is up to now that his hair isn’t blue? This movie is gearing itself up to be a major disaster. Rumor has it that Michael A. Goorjian might even reprise his role as Heroin Bob. Now for those of you who haven’t seen the original, I will not spoil it by giving anything away, but all I will say to that is: Why? Why is James Merendino so willing to jump several sharks to produce this monstrosity? What is it about filmmakers fucking with their own legacy? James Merendino has made several movies since SLC, but let’s face it, when James Merendino dies, his tombstone will read: “Here lies James Merendino, writer/director of cult classic SLC Punk! “. If he goes through with this sequel, his tombstone will read something like this: “Here lies James Merendino, writer/director of cult classic SLC Punk! and that embarrassment to celluloid, Punk’s Dead. Way to go James! Hope you enjoy eternity in Hell”
Maybe I’m being too rough on James Merendino and his *AHEM* upcoming sequel, but, fuck it, he asked for it. SLC Punk! was released in 1998 at the tail end of my teenage years and it was and I still find it to be, very influential to me. Do you want to know what the sad thing is here, folks? After all I’ve said in this blog, bashing a movie that won’t start shooting until this summer anyway (Ed. Note: Thus far, the release date for this flick is listed as November 21, 2014), the saddest piece of this puzzle is that I know I’m going to pay the $13.50 to go see this piece of trash, and you know why? Simply because I want to be proven right. Sounds crazy? Well, who ever told you that these blogs were written by a sane person? I’ve never said that. So yeah, I want to be proven right. I know this is a huge mistake, but I’m willing to sit through the 90 minute train wreck, just so I can be satisfied in the knowledge that I was right all along. And another thing, when I walk out of that theatre and greet that cold autumn air on November 21, 2014, I will (while still in front of the theatre), ritualistically set fire to my ticket stub and light my cigarette with it. And that, my fellow kilSters, is how much faith I have that this movie will ever succeed…
One week later…So I ‘liked’ the James Merendino Public Page on Facebook and leave a rant similar to the one you’ve just read and guess what? James Merendino himself responded back to me! The following is his response: “It’s my story. My personal story. I wouldn’t make a sequel if there wasn’t anything to say. What makes you think that all was said when he was 23 years old. Did you think he stopped living. Why do you assume he even becomes a lawyer? Why do assume anything? As I said SLC Punk is a story about MY life. The sequel is also the continuation of that life. Not literally, but figuratively and so one would assume that if the Sequel about my life is in my hands, it’s pretty safe.” …You know what? James is right and I am wrong. Why did I assume as I did that he would go and fuck up his own movie based on his life? If James is reading this, Let me just say, James, I am sorry and I stand corrected. Looking forward to the sequel, brother. Coming soon to kilScene in the very near future, my face to face interview with James Merendino. Here’s hoping he doesn’t kick my ass for all I’ve written before my apology.
For my fellow kilSters out there who have not yet had the viewing pleasure of SLC Punk!, click here to purchase what’s sure to be one of your all time favorites!