End of the World Film Club #2: Assault on Precinct 13


“There are no heroes anymore, Bishop.” Join us for our next End of the World Film Club, in which we’ll watch and discuss John Carpenter’s masterful cult classic, Assault on Precinct 13…

A couple of weeks ago, missing friends, trips to the cinema, popcorn and a pint, we launched (if you can apply so grand a word) our End of the world film club. While it can’t replace that communal experience of seeing a film on the big screen, it does give us all a chance to watch something then come together afterwards – albeit on Twitter – to chat and generally share our thoughts.

How it works. It’s nothing fancy: we pick a film together, watch it at our leisure, then gather for a chat using the hashtag #EndoftheWorldFilmClub. We’re doing this fortnightly for now. Each time, we’ll run a Twitter poll to select a favourite out of three options, which will all be free and easily accessible online (and entirely dependent on what’s available that given fortnight).

This time, we chose from John Carpenter’s 1976 modern take on the western siege template, Assault on Precinct 13; George Romero’s trailblazing horror, Night of the Living Dead (1968); and Prevenge, the 2017 gory dark comedy from writer, director and star, Alice Lowe.

A whopping 45% of you chose Assault on Precinct 13. In-part inspired by Howard Hawks’ Rio Bravo, Assault on Precinct 13 sees Carpenter weave together high tension, social commentary and an iconic score to produce a taut thriller of rare quality. It stars Austin Stoker as Bishop, an unwitting cop who must galvanise a motley crew of uneasy allies against marauding gang, Street Thunder.

The gang, craving vengeance for the slaying by police of six of their number, lay brutal siege to the titular, soon to be decommissioned police station. It is a simple, unsubtle set-up that nevertheless produces one of John Carpenter’s very best films.

What the critics said:

“It’s partly Hollywood, partly western, partly about life in the big city, and it is all tremendous. To this day it keeps coming back to me whenever I’m writing.”

Kleber Mendonça Filho (Bacurau)

“There’s no mistaking the modern racial and sexual politics encoded in the distinctly western elements of Carpenter’s lean, mean, genre-defying masterpiece.”

Slant Magazine, 2003

“As incisive as it is thrilling, Carpenter’s film is also gorgeous, courtesy of the director’s renowned use of the widescreen frame.”

AV Club, 2013

End of the World Film Club #2: Assault on Precinct 13

Watch Assault on Precinct 13 on All 4 on demand this week, and join us for a Twitter discussion this Friday 1 May 2020, 7-8pm


End of the World Film Club #1: A Matter of Life and Death  

The inaugural End of the World Film Club was Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger’s romantic fantasy A Matter of Life and Death (it’s free to watch here archive.org) – thanks to those who joined us for what proved a big love-in for that movie!

Our poll to select the next film club film will take place Wednesday 6 May

Posted on 27/04/2020 by thedoublenegative