Archive for June 4th, 2012

04
Jun
12

on the road

Howdy all!!!! I’m on the road and using this strange computer that is NOT A MAC, and it is proving to be most unuser friendly. Anyways It’s been a busy go with Wonderfest last week and back in LA for two weeks as of now so again the blog is on the backburner… Lots of stuff to post and write about so when I get back the 17th I’ll spend the day writing and catching up,,, In the meantime I’ll at least get the anniversary’s set on the appropriate days with articles to follow… I did a phone interview with John Carpenter a couple of days ago about the 30th of “The Thing” and can’t wait to put his comments up on the anniversarry later this month. So with all that said have a great one.

John

04
Jun
12

poltergeist, the 30th anniversarry

poster

June the 4th 1982, What a great day in movie history and this one and Star Trek II both opened at the same time.. I saw trek II first and Poltergeist second all on the 4th . I was a huge Spielberg fan and I couldn’t believe he had two movies coming out and just weeks apart. I thought I was in heaven with all that this man had going on… Tobe Hooper was the director of Poltergeist and the story came from Steven’s wild imagination.  And my oh my what a dark imagination he has!!! The premise is a ghost story set in modern suburbia. Mr.  Spielberg was at the top of his game with this one and I do miss these times when he wrote movies himself.  Needless to say this is one of my all time favorite films and I find it so hard to believe that it is 30 years old. Poltergeist is quite a flashback to the 80’s especially with the hair styles, home decor, and the way families functioned, much like my watching the educational films of the 50’s in the 80’s, is probably what it’s like watching Poltergeist by today’s teens.  One of the big changes from then in now is that in 1982 Television stations operated on a hourly basis and at the end of the broadcast day the channels would go to static till the next day.   The channels would either end with a short aviation film called “High Flight” or with the “National Anthem”.   Poltergeist could never be done today because TV stations never go off the air anymore…  Both,  Spielberg’s ET and Poltergeist were being shot very close to each other geographically and a lot of rumors at the time were that Spielberg had directed both and Hooper was only credited as the director. It took many years to show this story for what is was, A Rumor and Hooper started to receive the credit he so deserved. Back to the story, we find the movie opening in a lovely neighborhood where all the houses look identical and life outside of the city is fun and peaceful. Neighbors all get together for football games on TV and everything in the world is right,,,,or is it.. A family known as the Freelings live in one of these lovely homes and slowly but surly unexplainable things begin to happen shortly after the Nation Anthem ends the TV broadcast for the night.  Furniture moves, forks bend, vices are heard through the TV when the signal is off.  The activities continue to happen to the point where the families daughter( Carol Anne) who is the focus of the activities is pulled from the physical world and taken to the spiritual world.. This was pretty heavy storytelling at the time because what is a common topic of conversation now (the Paranormal) it wasn’t then. Moving on Their daughter is taken and the family quietly but desperately acquire the help of some paranormal experts who discover that there is something very wrong with the Freeling home. The scientist bring in a medium who puts the pieces together and discovers it is the beast himself that is holding their daughter at bay and using her to keep the departed souls from finding their way to the light and Heaven. A way is found to get their daughter back which at the moment is a good thing. But it only leads to the rage of the beast going on a full scale war against the family in his attempts to get Carol Anne back. In the process we discover that the lovely neighborhood known as (Questa Verde) has been built on top of an old cemetery. The family escapes barely and their home is sucked into vortex and taken back to Hell. Poltergeist is a wickedly fun tale and Hooper’s mastery of horror is more than evident with his exceptional work done here. Jerry Goldsmith set a new high with his incredibly disturbing music that he composed for this scary little ghost story. His use of choir and children’s voices added an uneasy element which carried a frightening mood throughout the entire film.. It is clearly one of his finest scores from the 80’s and a landmark score from his accomplished history! The casting was perfect and the performances by Craig T. Nelson, JoBeth Williams, Heather O”Rourke, and Zelda Rubinstein are incredible as well as those by the many actors making up the supporting cast. The production design by James H. Spencer is brilliantly executed at setting both a peaceful neighborhood imprisoned it the bowls of hell. James talents reach far and wide in scope and genre and he is still an active and creative force in the movie industry to this day. ILM was the place where the bewitching VFX came from and they had to create and invent a whole slew of new technologies to pull this one off. They did so with the brilliance they have become known for and I so loved the the vast array of work they did for Poltergeist. This is a great film and I hope you all have had as much fun with this one as I did,,,  So with that said Happy 30th to Poltergeist!

04
Jun
12

star trek 2, the wrath of khan, the 30th anniversary

poster

On June the 4th 1982, two incredible movies open at the same time, Steven Spielbergs “Poltergeist” and “Star Trek II, The wrath of Khan” I was up in San jose visiting my buddy Mark Zainer who is an avid Star Trek fan.. We were arguing about which movie to see, I wanted Poltergeist and he wanted Trek,,,, Since he was driving Trek was the first choice.. As much as I liked Star Trek The motion Picture I wasn’t a huge fan and I really wasn’t up for seeing the sequel.  The first Trek film left me wanting what the old series had and that was character and storyand I didn’t want to sit for two hours plus staring down the throat of V’ger again.  So reluctantly I went and I have to say that within 10 minutes of the movie I was loving it,,,,and by the end I was a huge fan!!! Trek II did what I so wanted The Motion Picture to do and it did so with flying colors. The story was brilliant and expanding on the episode  “Space Seed” from the original series was a masterful idea. Ricardo Monalban reprized his role with a vengeance and his poetic use of quotes from  Gregory Peck’s “Moby Dick” made him not just a villain but a man who’s heart has been broken and revenge was a righteous and pleasurable justification of his pain. The original cast put out stellar performances as well and the chemistry between the actors that we all loved from the original series was back in full swing.  Several new characters were added to the storyline, which were Kristie Alley as Saavik, Bibi Besch as Carol Marcus, and Merritt Butrick as David Marcus (Captain kirk’s son) The addition of Kirk’s old love and their son added such a new and deeper layer to the story that was an unexpected surprise. The script written by Gene Roddenberry, Harve Bennett, Jack B. Sowards, and Samual A. Peeples. stands high as a classic in the Trek film world and each of theses gentleman have a lot to be proud of!!!!!  Their story was so deep and except for Psycho I don’t think I have ever seen a major character die in a film… Such a brave move and his heroic death was another unexpected twist,,, I couldn’t believe it…  Spock was dead,, the entire theater was balling their eyes out…  On a visionary point of view, ILM took over the visual Effects on this one and there work was on the level of perfection. ILM was one busy shop in 82 with three huge films coming out within weeks of each other. Their work was VFX artistry at it’s best with incredible miniature shots and their creation of the star fields and nebula’s where breathtaking… I so miss the cloud tank and wish it would return to the big screen but like the entire world of physical special Effects those days are gone for good.  The introduction of the USS Reliat was too an incredible moment. Her creators Mike Minor, and Joe Jennings did a fabulous job constructing a new and favorite Starship to the fleet. As much as I loved the Enterprise, The Reliant was instantly my new Favorite and in many ways still is today. When I was reading the poster in line I was a bit disappointed at not seeing Jerry Goldsmiths name as the composer. Jerry also was having a busy Summer with his work being featured in Poltergeist, The “Secret of Nim”, and “First Blood” I don’t know if Jerry was approached about Wrath of Khan or if Paramount wanted all new blood on this outing but not seeing his name worried me. I was only slightly familiar with James Honer’s work and I thought that this man has some big shoes to fill.. Once again when the film was about 10 minutes in I was a fan of what James had done. His score was huge huge, romantic and full of high paced action sequences that added so much to the story! The complete soundtrack finally came out only a few years ago and I was so glad to have this work in it’s entirety. All in all Trek II made for a fabulous night at the movies and I am sure many of you will agree with me, the best of the Trek films by far.I can’t say enough about this one and the summer of 82 was such an inspiring season for films… I used to leave the theaters with such a love for what was on the screen and yearned so much to be a part of the movie industry,,, Little did I know I only had three more years to wait. HAAAA!!!!!!! Lots of fun an and great memories of times long ago… So with all this said Happy 30th to The Wrath of Khan!




June 2012
M T W T F S S
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
252627282930