The Ghastly Love of Johnny X (2012)

It’s black and white!  It’s a musical!  It’s…James Dean as an alien?

This is one of those films you love and enjoy, counting its flaws as part of its endearments.  There is a plot, of sorts, involving intergalactic juvenile delinquent Johnny Xavier and his gang of misfits, who are banished to earth, where they hang out looking cool.

Then there’s some nonsense involving a music promoter, a dead rock star (who may have a connection to Johnny) and Johnny’s superpowered suit which can raise the dead.  Sort of.

It even has the late great Kevin McCarthy in his last film role.

The film is incredibly beautiful, shot in glorious 35mm black and white on the last remaining reels of Kodak’s legendary Plus-X stock; the musical numbers are fun; and there’s none of the usual “oh, look at how bad those films in the Fifties were”pandering these deliberately retro SF films aspire to.

All in all, a gloriously silly labor of love that was worth the ten years it took to make it.  It might even be worth a second watch.  You never know.

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