Paul Schrader Gets XTREME

     October 6, 2009


The man who gave the world Travis Bickle and the most bad-ass Jesus ever, is set to return to theaters, as writer-director Paul Schrader has set his sights on “Xtreme City” a bilingual film set in the bustling streets of Mumbai. The film, which will see Schrader collaborating with Bollywood writer, Mushtaq Shiekh, will be financed independently by sports agent Dwight Manley, which makes sense considering Schrader’s “go to hell” attitude toward Hollywood. Hit the jump for a quick plot synopsis and a few musings on Paul Schrader.

Variety has reported that Schrader’s “Xtreme City” will be a tale focusing on a a former U.S. Ranger who teams up with an Indian commando in order to find the Ranger’s kidnapped sister-in-law, who is being held by a powerful Mumbai crime lord. Schrader says that the film will be firmly within the Bollywood mold, incorporating drama and comedy into the story, while downplaying the violence and sexuality to keep the film family friendly. And, of course, there will be song and dance sequences.

While the premise and execution of this flick sound interesting, the fact that it’s coming from Paul Schrader begs one blaring question; WTF, Paul? I mean, I understand the need to branch out, particularly after having experiences like “Exorcist: The Beginning”. I mean, if somebody watched your film and said “This isn’t cutting it, we think Renny Harlin can do better”, you’d be pretty pissed off too. Still, this seems so off and strange to me. The man wrote “Yakuza” for the love of god. But, to be fair, that’s the same thing that compels me to want to see “Xtreme City”. It’s so bizarre sounding that I can’t miss it, and actually kind of look forward to it. That title is awful though. It’s like the flick is being produced by Mountain Dew.


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