The Transcendents (2018)

Rob Franco, Savannah Welch, Kathy Valentine, William Leroy,
A dark comedic fairytale exploring the absurd and the all too real.
  • 8.0 /10.0 IMDB Rating:
  • DatePublished:
  • 2018-09-07 Added:
  • Writer:
  • Derek Ahonen, Director:
  • Melinda Prisco, Producer:

All subtitles:



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Trailer:

9 / 10

Eddie And The Cruisers meets Paris, Texas

Trippy film with a plot about tracking down a mysterious band. It follows the same structure of Eddie and the Cruisers in where you have the past (the formation of a band) colliding with the present (where the hell is this band now?). Unlike EATC, however, we never hear the band's music. (One single chord on a sitar at the end). I think this choice works really well as The Transcendents' (the band) music is not important to the story. (I'm also pretty sure that with all the well known musicians in the film, they could have had some great original music if they wanted to)

Which brings me to the acting. All the musician/actors are terrific. But the performance by Savanah Welch in the lead role is jaw droppingly good. Her character, Kim, doesn't start out as much (kinda bratty and annoying), but as the film builds momentum, the layers of her character are peeled away and you get this broken beauty that's hanging on to life by threads. LONG MONOLOGUE. (If you've seen Paris, Texas you'll understand.). The film probably has a debt to Paris, Texas as well with its weird leading man and desolate landscapes and long monologues.

Also, this isn't a movie about a cult. I don't know why the trailer looks like it's about a cult. Don't expect a story about a cult.

9 / 10

Metaphor for late stage capitalism?

Property, Property, Property!

This film struck me as kinda a metaphor for late stage capitalism. Not even a metaphor really since the George character says something like "This country is at a crossroads! They're either coming for the property of your mind or your body or your hands!" That's the situation for all the main characters. Every one of them has somebody coming for the property of one of those aforementioned forms of property. The desolate country landscapes, the empty bars, the people confined to wheelchairs, and the real life animals that have somewhat psychic powers and dread in their eyes represent an America in rapid decline. The fact that this film appeared to be written years before the polarized insanity we currently live in seems somewhat prophetic.

Very much recommend.

9 / 10

What in the what??? KATHY freakin VALENTINE as an actor???!!!

Watched the Go Go's at the Rock & Roll HOF ceremony the other day and started doing a deep dive on all the work they've done solo over the past few decades.

WHAT A PLEASANT SURPRISE TO FIND THIS GEM WITH KATHY VALENTINE!!!

In a movie about a rock & roll band on the the rise and fall and rise and fall, there's 1. No Rock&Roll music and 2. Characters played by rock musicians who bring a real authenticity to the world of indie rock music. This is especially apparent with Valentine who has been as mainstream as possible at times in her career and as indie as possible. She brings a real authenticity to the character of Jan (an owner of a dive bar that used to be big and is now lucky to get a few customers a night).

The whole cast is spectacular, but Kathy is a surprisingly good actor. I hope this film wasn't just a one off and that she continues to act along with all the great music she puts out between her many bands and collaborators.

Def check out this movie.

8 / 10

A trashy and moving surprise

This movie is a touching story about broken people. It really doesn't fit inside any one genre. It's funny but tragic. Exploitative yet sensitive. Trashy and artful. Grainy and colorful. The characters are ghosts and full-blooded human beings.

A lot of it feels familiar. But I can't place where it's borrowing from. At the risk of sounding ridiculous, it's almost like if Roger Corman made Days of Heaven. Or somehow if Malick made a Corman script.

All that to say: I'm glad I rented it. (I think. I really don't know what I saw)

10 / 10

Really Interesting

I saw this at a hostel in Krakow. I don't know "who", "how", or "why" it was being shown, but I do know i love Kathy Valentine from the Go Go's who is one of the stars in it. So I watched. And I continued to watch. It was fantastic.

I think this film is for "smokers". I'm not into that stuff, but the movie is beautiful with sober eyes regardless. The last 30 minutes are INCREDIBLY MOVING. The movie tricks you by getting you to think it's about the main guy, Roger, when in fact it's about the main girl, Kim. (Both really good actors in this movie). It also tricks you by getting you to think it's a rock n roll story about a band when it's really about overcoming your past and confronting the people who have hurt you. The film has these long monologues by certain characters lull you into a trance. (Hence why I think it's for "smokers").

Is it out back home in the states yet? Or did I just lose my mind in Poland? The American stuff you find while traveling abroad is hilarious. ANYWAY, I recommend the movie. A lot. So cool seeing Kathy Valentine act!