5 Things Hollywood Should Do to Save Itself, by Graf Orlock (Jason Schmidt)

Photo: Alexis Acosta 

Going back to the early aughts, Graf Orlock have been cooking up grind-driven hardcore with lyrics that read like they were written by a coked-up exploitation film screenwriter. Over the course of four studio albums and a grip of EPs and split releases, the Los Angeles band has created its own universe, though other outfits have tried to copy their stylistic approach. Next month, Graf Orlock will issue its latest full-length attack to the senses, Examination of Violent Cinema, Volume 1, and you can snack on a track from the album below:

Since Graf Orlock are obviously well-versed on the subject, I asked guitarist Jason Schmidt for a 5 things Hollywood movie studio executives can do now to save the industry from the creative rut its been in for many years now.


1. Stop Remaking Remakes

Photo from YouTube

The turn-around time is short and sweet in the eyes of the studios but to anyone paying attention, the cost is high in the realm of creative output. Why would Shane Black (Hawkins from the original Predator) do that to us with The Predator? Why do we need a gritty remake of Pokemon or the Power Rangers when I can look out my window and see a bunch of idiots larping in the park?

2. Let Stan Lee Go

Photo: Marvel Studios

Although this may hurt some with the recent passing of the King of the Comic film, it needs to be said that the arc-less Marvel Comic Universe should be a thing
of the past, (this excludes Punisher and Wolverine of course, whose shared powers are being mad and killing stuff.) Very rarely does anyone of import die and if I have to see another movie made from the sidekick of a sidekick who has the power of tagging along, I’ll blow my brains out.

3. Bring the Action Back

Photo: Paramount Pictures

Say what you will about Dwayne Johnson and Marky Mark but they have been focusing on bring back the brainless, thinly veiled and non-descript political innuendo films for a while now. Think about Shooter, a fine film that sought to tell a flimsy story of government intrigue with lots of shootings and explosions. Sure, they’re funny, so was Rigg’s interpersonal issues in Lethal Weapon, and that is the point. Everything takes itself too seriously these days and if you can’t imagine the situation you are in at work right now ending with a sick one liner and a potentially Russian character being thrown out a window, go find one.

4. Get Some New People in There

Photo: Lionsgate

Sorry to my boy Stallone but maybe it’s time to hang up the human growth hormones. The planet has a lot of people in it. I think in some regard maybe they can tell a story too without everything being self-referential or a sequel somehow. I’m not convinced he is in the exact shape to be gutting an entire squad of Myanmar jungle soldiers without the need of a super-respirator. Maybe it should be about a bildungsroman struggle of a kid growing up in poverty, joining that army, then
getting unceremoniously blasted while shooting at him? Who knows.

5. Bring Massive Explosions and Gratuity Back

Photo: Paramount Pictures

This in some ways is related to point three, but it can’t be said enough. If people clap in the theater when a guy gets juiced with a 50cal in glorious fashion, you know you’re going the right direction. The audience deserves a world of slightly fantasized brutality. If I wanted to see a movie about how bad everything is in the world through a slighter green-grayish tint, I would put on shades and think about my own pointless existence. I want to see something blow up in a vengeful and gratifying manner. Don’t we all?


Graf Orlock's new album, Examination of Violent Cinema, Volume 1, is out Dec. 7 on Vitriol Records and can be pre-ordered now.

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