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"I have come here to chew bubble gum and kick ass . . . and I'm all out of bubble gum."
Put the glasses ON . . .
Put the glasses ON . . .
Plot Summary for They Live (1988)

Nada, a down-on-his-luck construction worker, discovers a pair of special sunglasses. Wearing them, he is able to see the world as it really is: people being bombarded by media and government with messages like "Stay Asleep", "No Imagination", "Submit to Authority". Even scarier is that he is able to see that some usually normal-looking people are in fact ugly aliens in charge of the massive campaign to keep humans subdued.

Editorial Reviews Amazon.com

An economic crisis brings unemployed Nada (Roddy Piper) to L.A. in search of work. What he finds instead is that the ruling elite of the world are aliens in disguise, their aim being to keep humans in a state of mindless consumerism. His discovery comes when he dons a pair of special sunglasses made by a resistance group and sees for the first time reality unadorned. Billboards, store signs, magazine covers--all bear subliminal messages to OBEY, to CONSUME, to have NO INDEPENDENT THOUGHT. Money itself says THIS IS YOUR GOD. But worst of all, with these glasses you see which of us are really hideous, bug-eyed aliens. The conceptual breakthrough is hilarious while keeping its roots in darker matters. Although some fault the film for settling into its action plot, the ending has a great payoff. And the direction by John Carpenter is handled with superb workmanlike aplomb. One unforgettable set piece has Piper in a back-alley fistfight with a friend who won't put on the glasses that goes on and on, and just when you think it's over it goes another round. One of the most subversive films ever made in Hollywood, They Live was released on the eve of the 1988 elections. The first TV ads had two hideous alien politicians debating, then one accusing the other of being "No John Kennedy!"

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it's capitalists, not "aliens" that keep this dude out of work 20.Jul.2003 07:19


this is a sly rightwing post. fuck off, you din't trick me.

Watch the movie Juan 20.Jul.2003 08:05


It is a really good movie. Sure, capitalists are aliens...just see this great film..

to 'juan' 20.Jul.2003 13:04

the name is METAPHOR.

capitalists, not "aliens"

...we sleep 20.Jul.2003 13:35

Agent Orange

I always recommend this movie to friends who have not seen it because of the vivid metaphors it conveys. The lack of background as to how the world was taken over by super-rich aliens adds a nice twist since this realization is obiviously not encouraged by those in power.

"They own the whole goddamned planet--they can do whatever they want!"

are we still blinded 20.Jul.2003 13:50


The TV set god has given me the impression that the bogus inteligence came from the Italian government's inteligence people. But the bogus info was given to a journalist named Elisabetta Burba, like someone dropping off an Al quida video or audio tape to Al Jezear, or however you spell it. Those tapes get looked at by CIA experts to determin authenticity. And so was Burba's documents. She gave the documents to the US embacy in Rome, and after the documents were discredited, Burba's weekly news outfit PANORAMA chose not to run a story about bogus dis-information. That is when the lie began to die. But it didn't die.

The UK claims it has more, better, inteligence it recieved from a foriegn governments inteligence sercive, NOT a journalist. But everyone talking on TV is pushing the inteligence came from Italy. Why?? SLEEP CONSUME REPRODUCE. England promissed not diclose the inteligence reports because it could endanger the technical inforamtion gathering techniques and lives of the foriegn countries inteligence outfits. But, we are not even alloowed to know who it was that gave the UK the allegedly good inteligence info. How could knowing who is influencing out lives so much be harmfull, unless......I don't think telling whom the allegedly good info came from is too much to ask.