I don’t really know how to describe Cinegeek by Pluttark. It’s an entertaining grab bag, particularly if you love genre movies and weird observations. The subtitle gives a good idea of its aim: “fun trivia tidbits celebrating the cinematic world”.
Each page is another random topic, most often inspired by science fiction/ fantasy/ horror movies, illustrated by spot drawings or caricatures. The colors are just this side of garish, frequently bright pinks and yellows and turquoise blue. It’s a ridiculous valentine to pulpy movies.
Some pages are catalogs, such as “All the Different Ways Robert DeNiro Has Died” or “Actors Who Have Fallen in Love on Set” or “Movie Sets We Can Visit in Real Life”. Some will have you thinking “so right!”, as with “Superhero Film Adaptations We Could Perhaps Have Done Without” or “Proof That Obi-Wan Kenobi Is Completely Crazy”. Some may make you want to argue, such as “The Best Romantic Comedies Without Hugh Grant” or “Movies That Aren’t Interesting If You Know the Ending” (aka the page of spoilers).
Some require surprising skill, such as “Actors Considered for the Role of Rambo Before the Choice Fell on Sylvester Stallone”, in which ten men (including Pacino and Travolta) are drawn bare-chested with headband but still manage to look like themselves. There are also occasional quizzes, about recognizing iconic objects or extraterrestrials or robots.
All I know is that I meant to dip into it and wound up reading the whole thing, just to see what the next concept was going to be. It amazed me how many of these films I’d seen or knew of, and what Pluttark teased out of them (“Inventions We’d Like to See in Real Life”).
Here are some sample pages, to give you the flavor:
Cinegeek is fascinating, flippable fun. (The publisher provided a review copy.)