Review: Jon Harvey: TreasuRETROve at Assembly George Square Theatre

Walk into Jon Harvey’s 80s wonderland. The decade infected him with a love of all things obscure. You may have heard of movies so bad they’re good, but his collection is so bad it’s genius.

Harvey discusses his childhood, back when his nickname was ‘little pale face’ and his greatest thrill was watching his older brother play a text-based game called Election on a console I’ve never heard of. Technology got ahead of artistry and while the industry played catch-up, Harvey was paying close attention.

His collection of shark movies is 63 films strong. One is about a ghost shark. Another takes place in a women’s prison. Harvey will roll all the best clips for you on his guided tour of the retro obscure. He also knows all the superheroes you’ve never heard of. Asbestos Lady and Dogwelder are only a few of Marvel’s lost gems he will resurrect.

In a fun game with sequels, he attempts to pawn off a copy of Next with Nicolas Cage on an unsuspecting audience member but as of Monday night, no one had anticipated his bizarre sequels well enough to take home the prize. It’s not just the movies themselves he celebrates, but their trivia and lore. He’s immersed himself so far into the world of the obscure that it’s brought him to some pretty special places. The second half of his show takes a shocking turn, and the disjoint is worth it.

His pop culture infatuation is infectious and proves that some movies have the power to change your worldview. What is art? What’s at the end of his culture rabbit hole? Can films bestow power on you? Can they turn you into someone else? He made us promise not to reveal how far movie culture took him. Check out the TreastuRETROve to find out.

Jon Harvey: TreasuRETROve, Assembly George Square Theatre, 14-26 Aug, 9.40pm

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