WHY JOHN DIES AT THE END IS A PERFECT SOCIAL COMMENTARY ABOUT DRUG USE
- October 18, 2018
Halloween is almost here. At this time, we are scuttling about like spiders as we prepare for spooky parties and ghoulish activities. Parents are busy carving pumpkins with their kids, and blood-crazed young adults are ready to watch some creepy horror films. Scary movies are pretty much a requirement for Halloween, as they have been since the 1930s and 1940s when Dracula first stepped across the silver screen. However, did you think that a zombie-riddled, werewolf-spewing, ghost-infested cult classic film might actually teach you an important and funny lesson about drugs? Such a film exists, and we are going to look at it today. In time for Halloween, let’s see why the overlooked cult film John Dies at the End is a perfect social commentary about drug use.
Something Silly Is Something Fresh
What happens when you combine zombies, time travel, and acid into one film? Under different circumstances, the resulting film would be a disappointing exploitation piece. However, director Don Coscarelli (Phantasm, The Beastmaster) takes a different spin on a book that cleverly weaves these elements together to create a funny and terrifying trip for viewers.
Based on the book of the same name by David Wong, John Dies at the End (2012) is a dark comedy about two friends named David (Chase Williamson) and John (Rob Mayes) as they combat ghosts, goblins, and virtually anything that goes bump-in-the-night. Dimension jumpers and self-proclaimed “freelance exorcists,” the two eventually face their greatest challenge when an ancient entity threatens to consume humanity. Ultimately, they team up with an interdimensional traveler (Doug Jones) and an eccentric celebrity ghost hunter (Clancy Brown) to destroy the monster before it destroys them.
Pass the Soy Sauce
So where does the drug commentary come in? From the very beginning of the film, we are shown that drugs are not just an integral part of the story but the most important aspect altogether. In fact, substance abuse is the only reason our main characters can communicate with ghosts.
While hanging out at a party, Dave and John are introduced to a mind-altering drug called “soy sauce,” appropriately named for its sticky, black appearance. To work effectively, users must inject the ooze via syringe into the bloodstream. Once it enters their bodies, Dave and John gain the bizarre abilities to see demonic creatures and jump through time and space. In a particularly hilarious scene, Dave receives a phone call from a disembodied John (who is the first to use the drug). Why is this important, though?
Obviously, the drug is mirroring multiple addictive substances including heroin (an injectable), LSD (a mind-altering psychedelic), ecstasy (euphoria), and steroids (feeling of empowerment). However, we learn that, as a result of David using the soy sauce, an evil force is entering the human world (a clear metaphor for addiction or sickness). While their adventures are funny, David and John do show us (through clever writing and visual storytelling) how drugs can unleash demons into our lives, literally and figuratively.
Always remember that marijuana does not have control over your life. You do. Are you suffering from a substance abuse disorder or addiction? Do you have a friend or family member suffering from one or more of these debilitating illnesses? If you do, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our counselors and healthcare experts are ready to walk you through every step of the detox and withdrawal process and rehabilitation and guide you towards living a happier, healthier, and freer lifestyle. While the road to recovery might not be an easy road to travel, we promise to help you every step of the way. Take the first step to stay fit, healthy, and safe.
The time for you to take back control of your life is now. If you are interested in one of our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how to overcome your drug addiction and substance abuse troubles today.