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'Repo! The Genetic Opera' to screen

RELEASED: Feb. 9, 2010

poster for Repo!EAU CLAIRE — "Repo! The Genetic Opera" (2008) — a goth horror-musical film that "deserves the cult audience it so desperately craves" (The Onion A.V. Club) — will be presented Feb. 18-21 at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. The film will screen at 6 and 8:30 p.m. in Davies Theatre.

"What could be more suited to the classic operatic format than a cyber-gothic story of family treachery, clandestine drug-running, and the age-old quest for eternal beauty?" asked the Austin Chronicle. "'Repo! The Genetic Opera' — while not to everyone's tastes, to be sure — is a hugely ambitious affair, chock-full of love and death, hideously disfigured trickery, and foolhardy fathers who love their daughters to death ... and quite possibly beyond."

The story begins in 2056. After a plague of organ failures devastates the planet, a savior emerges in GeneCo, a biotech company that offers transplants — for a price. People mortgage their lives for new organs and are hunted by medical repo men if they default on their payments. In this surgery-addicted world, a young woman (Alexa Vega) who has been shut away by her overprotective father (Anthony Stewart Head) ventures out to find a cure for her own rare disease. Sucked into the haunting world of GeneCo, she begins to learn about her family's mysterious past. Paul Sorvino, Sarah Brightman and Paris Hilton co-star.

"Drawing from a bombastic visual palette that incorporates elements of 'Blade Runner' and 'Sweeney Todd,' director Darren Lynn Bousman ('Saw II-IV') plays up the gore," wrote the A.V. Club. "But he also wrings some remarkable performances from his cast, particularly the effortlessly magnetic Brightman, and Head, who finally puts those Bowie-esque pipes he displayed on 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' to good use."

"As a commentary on human vanity," the Austin Chronicle wrote, "'Repo!' is witheringly dead-on; as a full-fledged opera, it's somewhat less memorable but still well worth checking out if you're in the mood for some pseudo-'Rocky Horror' theatrics."

The University Activities Commission of the Student Senate will present the 98-minute film, which is rated R. Admission is free at the door with a Blugold Card or International Film Society membership. Community members who wish to attend campus films must purchase an annual IFS membership at the Service Center (715-836-3727) in Davies Center's east lobby. An individual membership costs $4; a family membership costs $10.

More information about the campus film series is available online and at the Activities and Programs office, Davies Center 133.

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JS/DW

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