Sunday, June 24, 2007

Science Fiction Escape

Sunny - Hi 113 Lo 87 for Baghdad, Iraq
Mostly Sunny - Hi 105 Lo 77 for Qandahar, Afghanistan
Scattered Thunderstorms (I hope) - Hi 90 Lo 71 for Northern KY, USA

Song of the week: Men In Black,
Will Smith


I am still not up to writing or dealing with anything of a personal persuasion and I am certainly not up to facing the realities of our current government. When did the Republicans Jump the Shark?? Have I stepped into some sort of Twilight Zone episode where black is white, right is wrong, and 2 + 2 = 5?

So Rod Serling speaks...

"You walk into this room at your own risk, because it leads to the future, not a future that will be but, one that might be. This is not a new world, it is simply an extension of what began in the old one. It has patterned itself after every dictator who has ever planted the ripping imprint of a boot on the pages of history since the beginning of time. It has refinements, technological advancements, and a more sophisticated approach to the destruction of human freedom. But like every one of the superstates that preceded it, it has one iron rule: logic is an enemy and truth is a menace..."

-The Obsolete Man, Season 2 from The Twilight Zone

-- If you are a Twilight Zone fan, that came from the introduction to an episode starring Burgess Meredith as a librarian. GREAT EPISODE!

Where was I? OH yes-- I am not facing reality. Instead, I am going to take a look at some of my favorite movies that allow me to escape into another time, another place be it a long long time ago in a galaxy far far away or into some demented twisted dark vision of the future. I'm going to escape into a world of science fiction... Please join me.

sci'ence-fic'tion (sī'əns-fĭk'shən) n. A literary or cinematic genre in which fantasy, typically based on speculative scientific discoveries or developments, environmental changes, space travel, or life on other planets, forms part of the plot or background. - American Heritage Dictionary

If you watch the trailers, be sure to turn off the Sunday Song.

In no particular order:

The Empire Strikes Back, 1980 - This is my favorite of the three six movies. By far it is the darkest of them all. No need to explore it any further, if you haven't seen it, you aren't interested. Right?

Lord of the Rings - the entire trilogy
Fellowship of the Ring, 2001
The Two Towers, 2002
The Return of the King, 2003
- Peter Jackson hit the mark on every count.

Star Wars, 1977 - This movie captivated all of us. It was a new world that George Lucas created. It wasn't just about the special effects, which were amazing. It was about all of us walking into a theater and experiencing a world none of us had ever seen. It was about good overcoming evil. It was about heroes. It was about the imperfections found in heroes. It was about all of us cheering at the end when the Death Star was blown to bits. We bought into all of it and we loved it.

Brazil, 1985 -Terry Gilliam, best known for his animation for Monty Python created this world that is set in the future but somehow is so very familiar. This is a look at bureaucracy when a simple typographical error is made. If you have never seen this before, it's fun, it's dark. Robert DeNiro is great as Harry Tuttle. Great score.

Close Encounters of the Third Kind, 1977 - Writer/Director Steven Spielberg nailed it. John Williams created the perfect score which in this case was also an integral character - again. WE ARE NOT ALONE.

Young Frankenstein, 1974 - Gene Wilder wrote it, Mel Brooks directed it and scary mad scientist was never more hysterical. One of my all time favorite movies.

Godzilla, King of the Monsters!, 1954 - Back when I was a kid when there were only 3 channels, 4 if you counted UHF (and could get it), there was a Sunday show called Creature Feature on Channel 19 WXIX tv. It was great. I have only seen the original Japanese version once (and Raymond Burr isn't in that version). Terrific fun.

Japanese trailer

Blade Runner, 1982 - I did not realize that Ridley Scott directed this movie. It is one of my favorites and I typically don't like his work... Crap, what if I'm a replicant?

Metropolis, 1927 - I haven't seen this movie in a very long time (I have never replaced my VHS tape). Visually, it is stunning and a great example of German Expressionism. If you are unclear on what communism is, check out this movie.

The Terminator, 1984 - Before The Titanic, James Cameron wrote and directed this little movie. I have to wonder if he wrote in Arnold's accent. Can you change the future by changing the past? "Arr yu Sa-rah Conna?"

Alien, 1979 - Another one directed by Ridley Scott. Maybe I don't dislike him as much as I thought.

Soylent Green, 1973 - One summer while at my grandparents I stayed up and watched the late late show and this was the movie. Oh My Gawd! I decided I would never live in New York City because of this movie. "Soylent Green is made from ____!!!!"

Logan's Run, 1976 - This movie scared the crap out of me when I first saw it. I think by today's standards it will appear dated and hokey. I don't care. I still love it.

King Kong, 1933 - A classic.

The Day the Earth Stood Still, 1951 - Cold War inspired.

The Blob, 1958 - OK this was another Creature Feature movie... BUT besides the Blob, this starred the forever cool Steve McQueen. It doesn't get any better than that.

There are others-- E.T. The Extraterrestrial, Men In Black I and II, The Abyss, Sleeper, Dr. Strangelove or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, Omega Man, and Planet of the Apes.

And I do realize I do not have Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey listed. Just not crazy about it... Did I miss any of your favorites?

Have a great week everyone!


HerkEng said...

If I could pick four things to watch the rest of my life, they would be,
--The day the Earth stood still.
--Dr. Strange love
--Empire Strikes Back (the newest three are horrible and I dislike them as much as I dislike ALL Star Trek)
and, I could watch all of the old TV --Twilight Zones over and over and over again... my favorites, Eye of the beholder and Where is everybody

Cathy said...

Herk, You just made me realize I forgot the only Star Trek movie I like.... Wrath of Khan. Ricardo Montalban was seriously hawt in that movie...

BlackOps said...

I like Wil, he has universal appeal, there is much that he touches that doesnt turn to gold. I like that fact that we like the same movies and tv shows. That episode of Burgess and how it ends is classic, I usually freak out when I see my glasses on the floor.

HerkEng said...

Oh got me, I did enjoy the Wrath of Khan, but I am no Trekkie!!

Khan was so nice and evil in that movie...

Smile and have a great week.

Cathy said...

I agree BlackOps- I liked his "Parents Just Don't Understand", loved his television series and most of his movies. We have yet to see Pursuit of Happyness, but anticipate that one to be inspirational and no doubt a half a box of tissue.

Herk! I love it. Ricardo played evil to perfection.

Jedi Master Rob said...

You just cannot beat "Empire". Best sequel of all time!

Hey, Blade Runner is being re-released on the big screen this fall. Let's go see it together.

Cathy said...

Rob, I just saw a bleep somewhere on the internet--- definitely need to go see Blade Runner on the big screen.

Wonder Woman said...

I've actually got Logan's Run on DVD and yes, it is dated and hokey...and yes, I am a total geek...

Cathy said...


I really need to get Logan's Run on DVD-- I have it on Betamax....

I think I just trumped you on "total geek."