A particularly genius entry on horror legend John Carpenter’s CV, They Live follows homeless drifter Nada as his eyes are opened to the true nature of the world around him. The catalyst for his sudden awakening? A pair of sunglasses. And what do they reveal? Why, that Earth has been taken over by aliens with less than altruistic intentions, of course.
Not only do these magic sunnies show our invaders’ true alien faces (without the glasses, they look just like the rest of us), they also show the myriad subliminal messages all around us, designed to keep us in check. “Obey” screams out the billboard you thought was an ad for coca-cola, “stay asleep” urges the magazine cover you thought was promising you a fast way to lose weight and those dollar bills in your pocket (for this is America)? No longer does the face of a past president stare back at you, instead, just the words “this is your God”.
Although They Live was made in the 80s, it doesn’t feel any less relevant now. Just look at that gigantic moon-faced gimp David Cameron and tell me he isn’t an alien who wants to enslave us all. You can’t, can you?
But I digress. The star of the show is pro wrestling star Roddy Piper. We all know how hokey wrestling is but don’t let that put you off, he’s actually very good, and ably supported by Keith David, that guy that pops up in loads of stuff but you can never remember his name.
They Live is excellent fun and I can heartily recommend it.