Repo Man

Off-Kilter Comedy

Main Cast: Emilio Estevez, Harry Dean Stanton, Olivia Barash, Tracey Walter

Director: Alex Cox

Plot Summary: A young man loses his job and drifts until he joins up with a repossession team of goofballs and misfits. There he plunges into the search for a mysterious car.

A cult classic, this comedy/chase movie has just about everything you can think of mixed into its unfocused, but amusing plot. Car chases, philosophy, UFOs, government conspiracies, and the mystery within the trunk of a 1964 Chevy Malibu.

The movie begins with Otto (Estevez), an angry young man who loses his job at the grocery store and stumbles into the world of the “Repo” men and women. All are slightly crazy and live by codes, which may or may not make sense. The whole company is led by Bud (Stanton), a world-weary cynic who spouts the most philosophy while breaking into cars and bringing them back to the shop.

Otto meets up with Leila (Barash), a serious young woman who works at the United Fruitcake Outlet. She’s into UFOs, and believes that there are aliens hidden in the trunk of a 1964 Chevy. Otto at first laughs at the nonsense and only wants to get into her pants, but events have a way of piling up and forcing one’s hand.

All that is along the lines of a plot, of course. But the movie weaves among many things, not tied down to the main goal of finding the car. It’s charming, nutty, and certainly full of classic dialogue, all off-center and designed to showcase the cast of characters. It succeeds, and I certainly think it holds up well (it is over 20 years old, after all). Not too bad for a film made on the fringe.

I can recommend this one for a host of reasons, but mostly to take in the weird characters and amusing plot.

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