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Film / Moonwalkers

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Moonwalkers is a 2015 comedy film starring Ron Perlman, Rupert Grint and Robert Sheehan.

It's 1969 and The Space Race between the USA and USSR is in full swing. CIA agent Tom Kidman (Perlman) is commissioned by the US government to recruit director Stanley Kubrick's help in filming a fake moon landing for broadcast, just in case the Apollo 11 spaceship is unable to actually land on the moon. Kidman begrudgingly takes the job and heads to England. Meanwhile, Jonny Thorpe (Grint) is a struggling rock band manager who is desperate to get his career on a roll, not helped by the fact that he owes some bad gangsters a lot of money. Jonny goes to a rich friend of his (a talent agent) for some help, and due to a mix-up, he is given the briefcase full of money meant for Kubrick. When Kidman realizes his mistake, he goes after Jonny and his roommate Leon (Sheehan), and they're forced to work together to try to create a fake moon landing film, evade the violent gangs of London, and indulge in some hazy benefits of 60's counterculture.

Tropes present in this film:

  • Action Hero: Kidman is a very tough guy, able to take on groups of gangsters well with either his fists or a gun. He is played by Ron Perlman after all.
  • Action Survivor: Jonny.
  • Based on a Great Big Lie: One tagline was "Based on a true conspiracy theory".
  • Butt-Monkey: Jonny lampshades this, stating his life is just full of bad luck.
  • Casanova Wannabe: The band's singer has no luck with women. Considering he thinks a good way to thank his audience is to jerk off on them...
  • Celebrity Resemblance: With a hair cut, some shaving and the right outfit, Leon is able to pass off as Stanley Kubrick long enough to fool Kidman, who only has a coffee-damaged photo to go on.
  • Cigarette of Anxiety: Jonny lights up when he's nervous or worried. Which is often.
  • Determinator: A CIA agent gets a fire axe embedded in his back and still manages to walk all the way to the set, where he collapses on-camera (to the increasing frustration of the generals, who have no idea what's going on).
  • Drugs Are Good: Jonny and Leon frequently use drugs, and even the serious CIA agent Kidman comes to appreciate marijuana and LSD.
  • London Gangster: A group of these serve as antagonists to give the heroes a hard time. Jonny owes them money on top of that.
  • Moon-Landing Hoax: The whole plot of the movie is making sure a good and convincing film of this can be made and broadcast, just in case the Apollo 11 craft and crew are unable to safely land. Subverted at the end - though the heroes do make a somewhat convincing (if clumsy) looking film, it's not necessary, because the mission was a success.
  • Mushroom Samba: When Kidman takes some LSD and begins to trip his balls off, curing his shaking hands.
  • New-Age Retro Hippie: Renatus, the head of the hippie commune and director used to take Kubrick's place for making the film.
  • One-Man Army: Kidman takes down a whole group of London gangsters by himself.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: Renatus refuses to follow the script, even when Jonny offers to double his pay. When he offers to triple it, however...
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Kidman fought in Vietnam, and he's often haunted by unsettling visions of people he killed or seen getting burned by Agent Orange chemicals.
  • The '60s: Hippies, the Cold War, drug use, it's all there.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: The lead singer of the band Jonny manages has delusions of grandeur (easily convincing himself the entire thing is a rock opera he's going to star in). Renatus is also one of these with a pretentious True Art bent to his work (a fat man and a chicken bouncing on a trampoline in slow-motion).
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: While not a tragedy, all of the characters' efforts are completely meaningless, because the Apollo 11 astronauts actually land on the moon, rendering the fake footage irrelevant.
  • The Stoner: Many characters qualify, but Leon especially. When a hippie chick gives LSD to an unaware Kidman, Leon's face immediately brightens up and he asks if she's got more. He also tries to relax before filming the astronaut sequence by doing mushrooms, leading to him bugging out on the set.
  • Your Head Asplode: Two Irish thugs get their heads blown completely off with shotguns.