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Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Simon Spotlight Entertainment (May 31, 2005)
- Do houseguests constantly complain that you've got nothing interesting to read in the bathroom?
- Do friends complain that waiting impatiently for you (as you try on your 33rd successive outfit while getting ready to go to the club) is boring because your coffee table contains only archaic episodes of the Onion and a few unpaid cable bills* to read?
- Are you constantly searching for 'light' or 'light-hearted' reading material that won't suck you in to a plot-line and refuse to let you get to sleep until 5 minutes before your alarm goes off?
Then go get yourself a copy of Field Guide to the Apocalypse : Movie Survival Skills for the End of the World by Meghann Marco
Most of the people I choose to spend my Saturday nights gaming, watching movies or even just socializing with, probably could have written this book. I probably could have written this book. You probably could've written this book** -- if we weren't so busy whiling our time away reading and writing things like Amazon.com Reviews instead, that is.
But thank heavens that Meghann Marco did - because it needed to be written!! And she definitely did it justice. Don't believe me without thumbing through it yourself? <A href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/068987877X/ref=sib_rdr_ex/104-1816661-9405525?%5Fencoding=UTF8&p=S00I&j=0#reader-page">Go read a few excerpts.</a>
It's a delightful little book - and if you keep it on the coffeetable, or in the W.C., it will amuse the crap out of you*** - presuming you have at least a passing knowledge of post-apocalyptic movies. It's good to be familiar with just about any Charlton Heston after-the-end-of-civilization movie (Planet of the Apes, Soylent Green, Omega Man...) It's good to know any Kubrick 'futurism' movies (2001, Dr.Read more ›
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It's always inspiring when someone you know gets her very own ISBN, especially if it's for a book that's funny, even moreso if it's intentionally funny. After watching scads of end-of-the-world flicks, Meghann Marco (of MeghannMarco.com, wtf) has written the book that is bound to continue to inspire even after our planet's doomsday -- I predict it will inspire fights to the death among the coming apocalypse's more intelligent would-be survivors (i.e., those outside of Tim LaHaye's readership).
Though it's inspired by films, Meghann's book is packed surprisingly full with Actual Information, some of which doesn't even have to wait for the Apocalypse in order to be true. For example, though she's talking about survival in Arctic conditions, "a lot of work means a lot of death" is undeniable by anyone who's ever done much of it. At least one tip has clearly been studied by the U.S. military:
"If you don't understand what the informant is saying, keep kneeing him in the stomach until he says, `Okay, okay, okay' and speaks English. Everybody speaks English if you knee them in the stomach enough."
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Actually, the hysteria was just me reacting to some unbelievably true little factoids I learned about our impending doom. I couldn't stop laughing-though at one point it turned to a nervous laugh due to the fact that the apocalypse is pretty much on its way and if we don't wake up, gear up, and put on our alien-seeing 80s sunglasses, then we're all screwed. The apocalypse is a scary subject, but it's a nice to know that if we should happen to come under an invasion from weird, green, anti-water alien people, we can always send Boy George to try to work things out. We'll probably be zapped to hell but at least we can go out with a smile. Good call Ms. Marco. Keep the good stuff coming.
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If the movies have taught us anything, it's that the apocalypse will most definitely arrive. When it does, we're going to need a 1970s muscle car to get through all the explosions and mad dashes against warlords.
When the day is nigh, it will also help to acquire a canine sidekick and a cache of weapons.
"Field Guide to the Apocalypse: Movie Survival Skills for the End of the World" ($10.36), by former video-store manager Meghann Marco, pragmatically guides you through the ins and outs of identifying and surviving false utopias, alien invasions and weather cataclysms.
Under the guise of a how-to book, "Field Guide" emerges as rapacious satire that takes the whole of action and sci-fi film history and shapes it into an oddly constructed world with its own arbitrary rules and regulations, to be joyfully torn apart by Marco's snappy, fluid prose. A must-read for any film fanatic, the guide plunders contradictions and clichés, taking preposterous movie science at its own level and holding it up for ridicule.
A vein of hilarious nostalgia courses through the pages, as we learn how not to be replaced by a robot in the vein of "Blade Runner," as well as how to identify if our food is people ("Soylent Green"). The gamut of popcorn movies is covered and comedically splintered, ranging from "Metropolis" (1927) to "Signs" (2002) and slapdown of the midlife crises by George Lucas and Steven Spielberg that caused them to re-edit their classics.
With wit, intense observation, occasional flashes of raw anger and reserves of accessible film knowledge, Marco makes her points with a flourish in a page-turner that demands to be read in one sitting.
- Contact reporter Phil Villarreal at 520-573-4130 or email@example.com