GB Hajim is the director, co-writer and chief animator of the Certified Weird Strange Frame: Love and Sax. We described that film’s visuals thusly: “Imagine dropping a hefty dose of LSD on the set of Blade Runner, and you walk through a door and suddenly you’re in the Star Wars cantina. Now, imagine that experience animated by the team behind Fantastic Planet working under the direction of Ralph Bakshi, take that result and square the weirdness quotient…”
Strange Frame is available on iTunes, Xbox, Playstation, Netflix, and most everything else, but if you really want to support the filmmaker and get all the features, the director recommends picking up the DVD from Amazon.
Strange Frame was GB’s first feature film. He makes his home in Hawaii. GB’s current project is the feature film Mermaids’ Lament.
Some of the very best of weird movies vanish into obscurity as soon as the actual print of the film wears out. I am thinking of the 1991 half hour film by Aussie filmmaker Shane McNeil called the Apocryphal History of Meat Part IV – The Brotherhood of Meat. Witty and weird, this movie is an excellent treatise on vegetarianism with lots of exploding meat to keep its tongue in cheek. A list of weird documentaries could be forthcoming—it would definitely include another Australian gem Cane Toads: An Unnatural History and Chris Smithʻs American Movie.
To me, the hallmark of a weird movie is a moment so unique that it can only be brilliant in the context of the certain refined bizarreness a filmmaker has created. Shu Lea Cheangʻs cyberpunk porno I.K.U. (which literally means “cum” in Japanese) has such a great moment, when two of the leads are singing karaoke into rotating throbbing dildos. Unfortunately, the rest of the movie drags, so it doesn’t make my cut for top ten. I also left off some gems that have just become too familiar, and therefore less weird, like The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
1. Bliss (1985), Dir. Ray Lawrence
The movie is a surreal journey of a man who, at the moment of death, has an epiphany so strong that when he wakes he cannot tell the real lies of his life from the lies his brain is telling him. Youʻd think that cockroaches erupting from his chest would be enough to tip the guy off, but youʻd be wrong.
The moment: Harry is having a bad day. His friend offers him a joint. His day only gets worse, beginning with rain. In the downpour, an elephant sits down for a rest, crushing Harryʻs car. Harry, unfazed and very stoned, tries to drive the now roofless car home and is surprised when the police pull him over.
The other reason I love this film is the way it points out the craziness of modern society in contrast to the more sane but difficult life on an anarchist commune. Another film to watch in this vein is How to Get Ahead in Advertising.
If the fact that this trip fest was made in 1943 doesn’t blow your mind, you donʻt have perspective. The sound track is eerie, but stripped of any pretension. Each element in the movie is used for maximum impact—a knife, a key, camera movement, a mirrormask. Yes, decades before Neil Gaiman, Maya made an image of a mirrormask that will be etched on my mindplane for life. Continue reading GB HAJIM’S TOP 10 WEIRD MOVIES