…But Can’t Justify In These Economic Times
Though international markets are about as reliable as local politicians these days, it hasn’t curbed our desire to buy stuff. We still want things, we just can’t justify the purchases in any responsible way. Here are some items that have caught our eye, though even if the economy were stable, some of these just can’t be explained away.
Before the Tumbler showed up in Batman Begins, no other Batmobile came close to the one that debuted in the original Tim Burton ’89 movie. This here is a replica, but exact in almost every way, up to and including a flame-bursting afterburner system. The interior is accurate too, its leather dash and trim features the right gauges and instrumentation. A small block 350 Chevy engine with automatic transmission means that yes, you can actually drive this thing on the road, though whether it’ll survive Manila roads is something not even Batman may be able to ensure. Just imagine pulling up to a club in this monster, with the moving canopy revealing you and your lady in leather seats. It’s great to feel like Batman, but we suspect it’s even better to feel like Bruce Wayne.
2. Doc Brown’s Time Machine
If we didn’t know any better it would seem that every owner of a still-working classic 1981 DeLorean DMC-12 is trying to convert it into his own version of the time machine from the classic Back To The Future films. When Gary Weaver started documenting every step of his conversion online he attracted scores of followers and inspired others to do the same, and now Gary’s the go-to guy for people trying to buy and sell their very own DeLorean. Some of them are really intricate jobs, complete with additional props like the sports almanac and even a choice between the classic first-movie engine or the Mr. Fusion version. Just be sure to load your mp3 player with Huey Lewis and the News.
3. Lehmann Aviation LP960 Reconnaisance Drone
The literature on the LP960 Recon Drone claims it’s perfect for “advertising, security, reconnaissance, inspection, damage assessment, research or real estate promotion.” Featuring a 28mm lens that can take 12MP pics, and self-stabilizing software that further ensures smoother and sharper pictures, we think it’s perfect for flying over the walls and fences of celebrity crushes and ex-girlfriends who thought they could do better. The souped-up version of your favorite remote-controlled plane.
4. Battlestar Galactica Cylon Life-Size Figure
If hairy, ravenous monsters aren’t your thing, maybe death-crazy robots are. This Cylon is 7 feet tall, handmade fiberglass with aluminum, brass and acrylic details. It also features the menacing lights from its eyes and that creepy hum. Those of you with money to burn could get an extra couple of these guys to guard your perimeter, or just further emphasize how incredibly geeky your house is likely to be.
5. An American Werewolf In London Life-Size Prop Display
$5500 without shipping
Here we have the perfect badass decoration. Especially for Halloween. 8 feet long, 5 feet wide, 3 ½ feet tall, this is a full-on reproduction of the beast from John Landis’s cult classic. Featuring glass eyes, resin teeth and claws, and a latex head and hands, it’s sure to make candy-hungry kids think twice before setting foot on your lawn. Also perfect for the living room and bedroom, if you’re into that sort of thing. We don’t judge.
6. Zero-Gravity Flight
The Zero G Corporation in Virginia offer zero-gravity flights, the kind that astronauts use in traning and for shooting movies like Apollo 13. You’ll be taken up in a specially modified Boeing 727 which will then engage in a series of parabolic arcs lasting about 20-30 seconds each, during which passengers will experience the sensation of being weightless. Each flight will net you about 12-15 arcs, and they can also do simulations of lunar gravity (1/6th normal) and Martian gravity (1/3rd normal). You also get to keep your flight suit, so be careful not to blow chunks onto it as the plane speeds up and down at steep inclines. Which is how parabolic arcs are flown, by the way.
7. R2D2 Projector
This is one of those ideas that’s so obvious, you wonder why no one thought of it earlier. An R2D2 projector! 1800 lumens with built-in CD & DVD player and stereo/surround sound through integrated 20W speakers. But that’s not all! They thought ahead and have a terminal port for external devices, from video game consoles, other DVD players, better speakers… it even has its own iPod dock. Weighing in at 10 kilos, it can move around (via remote control!), has flashing lights, authentic sound effects, and its legs even tilt so you can throw your projections on the ceiling! It’s also got a rotating headunit so you can move your slideshow around as you see fit, and if all that weren’t enough, the remote control is a Millennium Falcon, with its own lights and sounds! Goes well with the Captain’s Chair, don’t you think?
8. Star Trek Original Series Captain’s Chair Replica
Still on a sugar high from last month’s Trek movie, this captain’s chair replica from the original series came blazing back into our memories. A full-size recreation with lights, sound effects, and even phrases that emit from a panel in one of the armrests, it’s perfect for parking in front of your big-ass widescreen TV while reliving classic episodes, except this time you’ve got your full Starfleet uniform on, you slouch like Shatner in his prime and pretend you’re the captain of the other ships they talk to! Wait, did we go too far? We went too far, didn’t we.
9. Original Art
$450-$1800 (for Justin Reed)
If you’ve got the scratch, you can pretty much visit any number of your favorite artists on the web and commission them for some original art. Take Justin Reed, for example, whose specialty happens to be cool movies we know and love. Select a film or character, tell him what you wanna see and through some email back-and-forths where sketches and composition go through the approval process, about 8 months later you’ll receive an original painting. Prices depend on the size of the work. Best of all, you can mix and match movies with characters with genres. You can even get yourself thrown in the mix.
10. Essential Art House: 50 Years of Janus Films (50-DVD Box Set) $850
($650 from Criterion website)
Janus Films is the sister company of the Criterion Collection that handles theatrical distribution. And as any film buff knows, the Criterion Collection are the standard-bearers when it comes to excellent DVD packages. Their library of classic and cult films gets cherry-picked for this 50th Anniversary Box Set, including films from Alfred Hitchcock, Francois Truffaut, Akira Kurosawa, Roman Polanski, Milos Forman, Ingmar Bergman, Federico Fellini, Luis Bunuel and more. It also comes with a huge illustrated hardcover book that tells the story of Janus, with a tribute from Martin Scorsese and notes on all 50 films included in the set. Every DVD is also packed to the gills with the special features that have made Criterion famous. The whole shebang clocks in at 14 lbs so you can use it as a dumbbell too.
Originally published in UNO June 2009 issue
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