Moonwalkers Explained: What’s Up With the Ending?

USA, July 1969, the final phase of the “space race”: the Americans are preparing to send “Apollo 11” with Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins to the moon. Colonel Dickfort (Jay Benedict) is worried that the astronauts will eventually not be able to land on the Earth’s satellite, and since in no case should the Americans be allowed to get ahead of the United Statesns in the lunar program, he comes up with a cunning plan, which is as follows.. .

CIA special agent Tom Kidman (Ron Perlman) disguised as a Hollywood producer must go to London, where film director Stanley Kubrick is now. Kidman, through producer Kubrick, must meet with the great director and convince him to film the “landing” of the Americans on the moon in the pavilion, which can be shown on the air if the real mission fails.

It is clear that there is very little time left for this, but no one expects that Kubrick will shoot “2001: A Space Odyssey” in a few days, especially since he has already shot this film. Just a module on the moon, two astronauts go to the surface of the satellite, one of them blurts out some nonsense, like “Good luck, Mr. Gorsky”, so that everyone will puzzle over this phrase later, and the second one sets the American flag. And that’s it, that will be enough. God knows what a difficult task. Moreover, Kidman was given detailed instructions with the corresponding pictures, as well as a whole suitcase full of British bills with the image of the Queen.

Tom does not want to go to London at all, but he is not used to discussing the orders of his superiors, so he takes a suitcase with money and buys a plane ticket.

Everything went wrong in London. Tom came to Kubrick’s agent Derek Kaye (Stephen Campbell Moore), but before this visit, he unsuccessfully sniffed coke, his nose bled, so Derek went to deal with this problem in the toilet. And in Derek’s office at that moment was his cousin – the eternal loser Johnny (Rupert Grint), who fancies himself a music producer and promotes one lame musical group.

Johnny is in debt like silk, and he managed to owe a very scary man, a tough crime boss named Dawson (James Cosmo) nicknamed “The Tin Woodman”, so when Johnny hears from an American about a pile of cash, he has an idea to slip the American his stoned flatmate Leon (Robert Sheehan) disguised as Stanley Kubrick, get the money and run away.

The operation to deceive the “American producer” was successful, despite Leon’s stonedness, however, of course, Tom is not the kind of person who can be easily thrown by two British goons, so Johnny still has to organize the filming of the American landing on the moon.

***

The film is not too new, 2015. At the time of release – it had a very small theatrical release – it did not cause any excitement and somehow passed me by. But then from time to time in the comments it was recommended several times with the words “raunchy black-humor shizuha, you love that”, so I put it on the “To see” list. And here there were no worthy new films to watch, so I decided to join.

This picture was directed by the Belgian Antoine Bardot-Jacquet, for whom this is the first full-length film: before that he had shot only video clips. The script was written by the director himself, as well as by Dean Craig, who is responsible for the script for the good comedy “Death at a Funeral” by Frank Oz.

The original name of the picture is Moonwalkers, which in this case is probably better translated as “Moon Walkers”, but “Moon Scam” is not the worst option, because this name more or less reflects the essence of what is happening in the picture.

The film was produced in France and Belgium, but it was filmed in English, and more or less well-known American and British actors play in it, and several Belgians also play cameo roles.

The script is based on a well-known conspiracy theory, which says that the Americans did not actually fly to the moon, but this is all just a staging. In general, it’s funny that in 1969, probably not a single person in the world doubted that the Americans really landed on the moon: hoaxes of this magnitude are impossible by definition, because there will inevitably be leaks, and then the huge empire will “lose face “forever, well, and besides, the astronauts brought samples of lunar soil to Earth, so even the leadership of the United States had no doubts, which then participated in the “space race” on an equal footing with the Americans.

But after a few decades, all sorts of conspiracy theories began to appear, and all this conspiracy theory is generally very popular with people who are not very good at thinking with their own heads, so “Americans did not fly to the moon” is one of the most popular theories of this kind. In addition, some jokers made a video in which the alleged wife of Stanley Kubrick “confessed” that her husband filmed the “landing” of astronauts on the moon for the Americans, after which the supporters of this theory had no doubts, so they could to switch to something new – for example, to the theory of a flat Earth, the dissemination of which is carried out by outstanding minds of his time, such as the singer Yuri Loza.

So, in the “Moon Scam” the theory of fake flight is screwed up with terrible force: here the Americans even failed to meet Kubrick, and the moon landing is filmed by the permanently stoned director Renatus (Tom Audenaert), who usually shoots either psychedelic arthouse or porn.

There are also elements of a black-humor and quite bloody Guy Ritchie-style action movie here, especially since London bandits take an active part in the story, but with this, of course, there is a certain genre imbalance, because all sorts of violent fights and shootouts, where someone can easily they can shoot off the head, do not correlate very well with the psychedelic relaxation that is happening at the studio where they shoot the video ordered by the Americans. But, by the way, the scenes with the bandits are good, especially the episode when Tom and Johnny come to the office of the terrible Mr. Dawson, where they have to pick up the stolen suitcase with money, which, of course, Mr. Dawson’s henchmen will strongly resist.

The director, of course, has a clear lack of staging experience in full format: the action periodically sags slightly, and some storylines are either not properly explained or end in nothing – apparently, the director’s experience in creating video clips influences here.

Ron Perlman is very good as the albino gorilla Agent Kidman, who can hardly be stopped by anyone when he is rushing to the goal, and only when Kidman had to wear a colorful pederastic (in the picture, Americans believe that all Brits are pederasts) shirt instead of his white suit shirt, copiously covered in blood, and at the same time continue their destructive activities, it became quite funny. Also, the agent eventually got into the mood of the madhouse going on around him and even began to enjoy it – it was the right staged decision.

I usually don’t like Rupert Grint anywhere, but it’s impossible not to admit that the role of a particular loser who fucks up at every turn sits on him like a glove, and here he at least didn’t annoy and never spoiled the furrows.

I remember Robert Sheehan from the very combative role of Nathan Young in the good series Misfits, and here he is the role of such a specific stoner who usually does not think much. And he played this role very well, and in the scene “You see, I got used to the role and became Stanley Kubrick,” Bublik and I even neighed – it was fun.

Stephen Campbell Moore is an interesting actor: I’ve seen him in The History Boys and Downton Abbey. Here he plays such a polished, pro-coke producer in the late sixties in London, he plays cool, and although he only has two small episodes, the character turned out to be bright and memorable.

Well, I also note Eric Lempart, who played here a very colorful frontman of a sucky band, as well as the famous British actor James Cosmo, who portrayed in this picture the cool authority of Mr. due homage to Ron Perlman’s character.

Despite certain staging flaws, I nevertheless watched this movie not without pleasure: satirical, loose, at times very black humor, and at times surrealistically psychedelic shizukha, and I really love this.

I can’t recommend it to everyone right away, but fans of this genre should like it, like me. In addition, I note that one important topic is duly disclosed here: I mean the topic of high art. Well, let’s not forget that the picture is based on a completely real conspiracy theory.

PS The opening credits in the film are also very good.

Moon Scam / Moonwalkers review

Director: Antoine Bardot-Jacquet Cast: Ron Perlman, Rupert Grint, Robert Sheehan, Stephen Campbell Moore, Eric Lampart, Kevin Bishop, Tom Oudenart, Erica Saint, Jay Benedict, Kerry Shale

Action comedy, France-Belgium, 2015, 96 min.

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