Don Draper Says What, the creator of last year’s amazing “Baby Got Back” supercut and more recently, this Avengers/Breakfast Club mashup, returns with a new video that filters a cherished nerd classic, 1985’s Real Genius, through the surrealist stylings of Hollywood
auteur punching bag, M. Night Shamayalan. What’s notable here is the edit’s focal shift, from the film’s hero-protagonist, Chris Knight (played to perfection by a dreamy, 20-something Val Kilmer exuding both wit and charisma), to his even geekier roommate, Mitch Taylor (Gabe Jarret), a sweet but awkward 15-year-old science prodigy. Their friendship powers the film’s narrative beats, but here it is corrupted into something darker, more foreboding, and shot through with uneasiness, thanks largely to the transformative power of selective editing and more importantly, the trailer’s dissonant score, which lends a degree of suspense, horror, and gravitas otherwise absent from the source material. (Also displaced to the periphery in Draper’s treatment are the brainy pranks and comedic sight gags — Knight’s amazing assortment of prop shirts, the film’s climactic, laser-fired volcano of popcorn, the New Wave study hall montage — that made the movie so memorable but this only enhances its effectiveness as a remix.) Brillz!
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