Thursday, September 7, 2017
J. Searle Dawley
1910 • 14 Minutes • 1.33 :1 • United States
Edison Manufacturing Company
Cast: Augustus Phillips, Charles Ogle, Mary Fuller
Written by: J. Searle Dawley Based on Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Described as a "liberal adaptation" of the Frankenstein story by Edison, the film packs a lot into its 14 minute runtime. The film wastes no time in getting right to the good stuff, practically skipping right to the experiment. Instead of lightning bringing the monster to life, you see the monster materialize from skeleton to flesh. The special effects for the time are quite impressive and terrifying. The film is in the public domain, which you can check out below.
The #CountdownToHalloween continues with our #HistoryOfHorror
THE HAUNTED CASTLE (1896)
Director: Georges Méliès
Writer: Georges Méliès
Starring: Jeanne d'Alcy, Jules-Eugène Legris, Georges Méliès
Genre: Haunted House
One of the earliest examples of horror on film comes from the imagination of Georges Méliès. Clocking in at a little over 3 minutes, Méliès packs a lot into the single shot short film. A bat bursts through a window in a castle and transforms into Mephistopheles. What follows is a series of in-camera magic tricks as the devil conjures up a series of supernatural creatures.
Monday, July 31, 2017
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A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away. On today’s podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark discuss the 1977 George Lucas classic: STAR WARS! On this week’s show:
- Growing up Catholic as a Star Wars fan
- More Alamo Drafthouse discussions
- Christopher Nolan’s distaste for CGI
- What’s the perfect date movie of 2017?
- The Star Wars/San Diego Comic-Con connection
- All the trailers coming out of Comic-Con 2017
- Disney hunting down trailer leaks
- Jeff Goldblum makes everything better
- A tribute to Martin Landau, George Romero and John Heard
- Star Wars’ 40th Anniversary
- The many titles George Lucas went through before settling on “Star Wars”
- Why is A New Hope so good? Was it a fluke?
- George Lucas was not tested in a big budget environment
- George Lucas, the world’s biggest independent filmmaker
- Star Wars changed the movie licensing game
- The complex ownership between 20th Century Fox and Disney
- When did we first experience Star Wars?
- The Special Edition releases in 1997
- Star Wars action figures!
- Fast Food Star Wars tie-ins
- The multiple VHS releases
- Star Wars as a holiday film
- Why did Adolfo get in trouble when he saw Star Wars in theaters in 1997?
- Who won that damn Star Wars Hummer?
- When did “Star Wars” become “Episode IV: A New Hope”?
- How the naming convention was inspired by the old chapter movies of the 30s and 40s
- Serials were not meant to be watched all at once
- How the film was plagued with multiple production problems
- Hammer Horror icons Peter Cushing and his on-screen rival Christopher Lee both appeared as Star Wars villains
- The use of CGI to bring back younger versions of older actors (or dead actors)
- Empire of Dreams: the best documentary on Star Wars
- How Star Wars changed the sci-fi game in the 70s
- How the crew completely disrespected George Lucas
- George Lucas: Control Freak
- The New Hollywood directors
- The director has final say on a film
- What Brian De Palma and Steven Spielberg thought of the film when they saw the rough cut
- “It rhymes.”
- Why Jabba the Hutt isn’t needed in Star Wars Special Edition
- Marcia Lucas is the real MVP
- Star Wars: a space fairy tale
- Did Lucas rip-off The Dam Busters?
- David Prowse was not pleased he was dubbed over
- The movie was really made in post-production
- Ben Burtt: Sound genius
- Inventing new technology just make the film
- The birth of Industrial Light & Magic
- How the Death Star trench run was filmed
- The Prequels and their loyal defenders
- The joint casting sessions for Star Wars and Carrie
- Who was Mark Hammill’s competition for Luke Skywalker
- The wacky names considered for Han Solo
- Harrison Ford and Alec Guinness grew to resent the films
- “I Was Going to Toshi Station to Pick Up Some Power Converters”
- Is Princess Leia English?
- Are you Luke Skywalker or Han Solo?
- The great chemistry between Fisher, Ford and Hammil
- Anthony Daniels does not have a career outside of C-3PO
- The inspiration for C-3PO and R2D2
- The second act problems of Return of the Jedi
- Boba Fett: a great looking character without substance
- What is the proper viewing order of the saga?
- What Adolfo considers to be the WORST Star Wars movie
- The most recognizable movie theme of all time
- Star Wars launched a merchandising empire
- Adolfo’s vintage Burger King Star Wars glasses
- The “Empty Box” campaign
- The Star Wars Holiday Special
- Prequels, sequels, spin-offs and sequels
- “When will then be now?” “Soon”
- George Lucas can’t leave well enough alone
- How can you watch the original theatrical versions (legally). Hint, it involves going on eBay and some outdated technology
- The “De-Specialized” Editions
- Han shoots first!
FILM REFERENCES IN THIS EPISODE:
- FLASH GORDON (1936)
- BATMAN (1943)
- CAPTAIN AMERICA (1944)
- BATMAN AND ROBIN (1949)
- THE DAM BUSTERS (1955)
- THE HIDDEN FORTRESS (1958)
- NORTH BY NORTHWEST (1959)
- NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (1968)
- PLANET OF THE APES (1968)
- THX 1138 (1971)
- A CLOCKWORK ORANGE (1971)
- AMERICAN GRAFFITI (1973)
- THE GODFATHER PART II (1974)
- JAWS (1975)
- LOGAN’S RUN (1976)
- CARRIE (1976)
- DAWN OF THE DEAD (1978)
- SUPERMAN: THE MOVIE (1978)
- THE STAR WARS HOLIDAY SPECIAL (1978)
- MAD MAX (1979)
- STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE (1979)
- THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (1980)
- RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (1981)
- THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO (TV Series, 1981-1983)
- BLADE RUNNER (1982)
- RETURN OF THE JEDI (1983)
- THE A-TEAM (TV Series, 1983-1987)
- SCARFACE (1983)
- A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (1984)
- MUPPET BABIES (TV Series, 1984-1991)
- BACK TO THE FUTURE (1985)
- DAY OF THE DEAD (1985)
- STAR WARS: DROIDS (TV Series, 1985-1986)
- BIG (1988)
- SPACEBALLS (1988)
- CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS (1989)
- HOME ALONE (1990)
- JURASSIC PARK (1993)
- ED WOOD (1994)
- PULP FICTION (1994)
- BATMAN FOREVER (1995)
- THE ADVENTURES OF PINOCCHIO (1996)
- BATMAN & ROBIN (1997)
- THE IRON GIANT (1999)
- THE SOPRANOS (TV Series, 1999-2007)
- STAR WARS: EPISODE I - THE PHANTOM MENACE (1999)
- HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE (2001)
- STAR WARS: EPISODE II - ATTACK OF THE CLONES (2002)
- PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL (2003)
- EMPIRE OF DREAMS: THE STORY OF THE STAR WARS TRILOGY (2004)
- STAR WARS: EPISODE III - REVENGE OF THE SITH (2005)
- STAR WARS: THE FORCE UNLEASHED (Video Game, 2008)
- THE WALKING DEAD (TV Series, 2010-Present)
- THOR (2011)
- THOR: THE DARK WORLD (2014)
- GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (2014)
- STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS (2015)
- ANT-MAN (2015)
- ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY (2016)
- CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR (2016)
- DUNKIRK (2017)
- WAR OF THE PLANET FOR THE APES (2017)
- SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING (2017)
- THE BIG SICK (2017)
- GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 (2017)
- READY PLAYER ONE (2018)
- AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR (2018)
- JUSTICE LEAGUE (2018)
- THOR: RAGNAROK (2018)
Star Wars glasses
Harmy’s Despecialized Editions
TWITTER: @EssentialFilms, @FPMoviePodcast, @Adolfo_Acosta, @Sportsguy515
Sunday, July 30, 2017
The #RoadTo100 arrives down the home stretch!
YOUR favorite movie podcast, FORCED PERSPECTIVE, is proud to present the first of its final two episodes before the 100TH EPISODE SPECTACULAR! On this Episode 99, join SportsGuy515 and Adolfo as they add another entry into their MY FAVORITE FILM series by welcoming back BRANDON DRAVEN to discuss HIS favorite film – what many call Quentin Tarantino’s masterpiece – from 1994, it’s Pulp Fiction!
In Part 1, the guys discuss all the stories behind the creation of the film that would become a watershed moment in the history of independent cinema. PLUS:
-Is Corona better than Miller High Life?
-The guys reminisce on watching Pulp Fiction for the first time.
-Adolfo tells a story involving his cherished bootleg VHS tape of Pulp Fiction.
-The story behind Pulp Fiction‘s original vision and how the film ended up the way it did.
-How Pulp Fiction literally saved John Travolta’s career.
-The risk that Bruce Willis took in being a part of Pulp Fiction and how that risk paid off handsomely.
-Fawning over the amazing actors involved in this film.
-The “Royale with Cheese” scene and why people love it so much.
OVER AN HOUR OF GREAT FILM DISCUSSION!! SO PICK UP SOME BIG KAHUNA BURGER, RELAX, AND DOWNLOAD/STREAM NOW!!!
Sunday, July 23, 2017
The #RoadTo100 Continues…
On this episode of YOUR favorite movie podcast, join SportsGuy515 & Adolfo, along with special guest HEADCASE, as they review and discuss the latest entry into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Spider-Man: Homecoming! PLUS:
-Some advice on what to do when you have a hangover…
-Headcase’s experience at an advanced screening of Spider-Man: Homecoming
-Tom Holland strikes the perfect balance between Peter Parker and Spider-Man
-Michael Keaton’s performance is an absolute show-stealer!
-Captain America teaches us a lesson in PATIENCE with the ultimate troll job.
-The effectiveness of Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark in the mentor/father-figure role.
OVER AN HOUR OF GREAT SPIDER-MAN TALK!! SO GET YOUR BLITZKRIEG BOP GOING AND DOWNLOAD/STREAM NOW!!!
But…was he slow?
The #RoadTo100 continues on FORCED PERSPECTIVE! Join SportsGuy515 & Adolfo as they review the latest Summer 2017 releases including It Comes at Night, Colossal, The Mummy, Transformers: The Last Knight, Despicable Me 3, and Baby Driver!
-Queen without Freddy Mercury is NOT QUEEN! -Adolfo
-The great storytelling of It Comes at Night
-The uniqueness that made Colossal something special.
-Did The Mummy succeed in jumpstarting Universal’s Dark Universe?
–Transformers: The Last Knight is exactly what you’d expect at this point – so much so that SportsGuy goes on yet another EPIC RANT on it.
-As decent as Despicable Me 3 is, Adolfo still hates the Minions.
-SportsGuy talks about attending Baby Driver at Alamo Drafthouse with KID KOALA in attendance.
–Baby Driver is 2017’s closest thing to perfection. Period.
AN EASY-LISTENING HOUR OF GREAT FILM DISCUSSION!! SO PUT ON YOUR EARPHONES, STRAP IN YOUR SEATBELT, and DOWNLOAD/STREAM NOW!!!
Friday, July 7, 2017
On today’s podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark discuss the 1957 David Lean classic: THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI!
STREAM IT or SUBSCRIBE ON ITUNES
On this week’s show:
- Mark takes another EPIC trip to Alamo Drafthouse
- Mark’s retweet from an 80’s icon
- Jelly donuts
- Toy guns
- Korean exercise videos
- 2017 Summer Movies
- Adolfo is done with Minions
- Adolfo butchers Japanese and French
- The benefits of Netflix Disc subscription
- The slow start to Bridge
- The David Lean Trilogy
- Why William Holden was cast
- William Holden’s record breaking salary
- Why Alec Guinness thought the film was Anti-British
- Why Adolfo trusts Alec Guinness without question
- The anti-Japanese sentiment of the film
- Does the film romanticize the building of the bridge?
- The central conflict of Col. Nicholson
- Major Shears’ redemption
- Jack Hawkins: Bad Ass
- Building an actual bridge for the film
- Mark makes a Simpsons reference (SHOCKING)
- Nicholson’s ambiguous finale
- Women Bearers!
- The hokey final words
- The Hollywood Blacklist rears its ugly head
- Masterful editing for the climax of the film
FILM REFERENCES IN THIS EPISODE:
- THE GENERAL (1926)
- BRIEF ENCOUNTER (1945)
- OLIVER TWIST (1948)
- WINCHESTER ‘73 (1950)
- SUNSET BLVD. (1950)
- STALAG 17 (1953)
- PATHS OF GLORY (1957)
- SLEEPING BEAUTY (1959)
- SPARTACUS (1960)
- WEST SIDE STORY (1961)
- LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962)
- THE GREAT ESCAPE (1963)
- THE FALL OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE (1964)
- THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY (1965)
- DOCTOR ZHIVAGO (1965)
- BATMAN: THE MOVIE (1966)
- 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY (1968)
- THE WILD BUNCH (1969)
- THE LOSERS (1970)
- JAWS (1975)
- NETWORK (1976)
- ZOMBI (1979)
- APOCALYPSE NOW (1979)
- MANIAC (1980)
- AIRPLANE! (1980)
- AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON (1982)
- A PASSAGE TO INDIA (1984)
- BACK TO THE FUTURE (1985)
- FULL METAL JACKET (1987)
- TOP GUN (1987)
- BATMAN (1989)
- PACIFIC HEIGHTS (1990)
- HEARTS OF DARKNESS (1991)
- TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY (1991)
- FORREST GUMP (1994)
- INDEPENDENCE DAY (1996)
- MEN IN BLACK (1997)
- ALI (2001)
- HITCH (2005)
- THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS (2006)
- I AM LEGEND (2007)
- THE DARK KNIGHT RISES (2012)
- THE AVENGERS (2012)
- INTERSTELLAR (2014)
- JUPITER ASCENDING (2015)
- MINIONS (2015)
- FURIOUS 7 (2015)
- STRANGER THINGS [Netflix Series] (2016)
- TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT (2017)
- PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES (2017)
- COLOSSAL (2017)
- LUCKY (2017)
- DUNKIRK (2017)
- ATOMIC BLONDE (2017)
- SPIDER-MAN HOMECOMING (2017)
- WAR OF THE PLANET OF THE APES (2017)
- THE EMOJI MOVIE (2017)
- ANNABELLE CREATION (2017)
- THE DARK TOWER (2017)
- VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS (2017)
- BABY DRIVER (2017)
- The Losers (1970) - Trailer
- GI Joe Commercial
- Paths of Glory (1957) - Trailer
- Nancy Sinatra “These Boots Are Made for Walking”
- R. Lee Ermey
Sunday, June 18, 2017
The #RoadTo100 continues on FORCED PERSPECTIVE!
On this episode of YOUR favorite movie podcast, join SportsGuy515 & Adolfo as they journey along Summer 2017 with reviews of Alien: Covenant, Baywatch, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, and Wonder Woman! PLUS:
-SportsGuy will return to Alamo Drafthouse in June for a screening of…
-“King Arthur died a horrible, painful death.” -Adolfo
-The issues with Alien: Covenant and how Ridley Scott betrayed his own franchise.
-Despite its issues, is Alien: Covenant still worth a watch? SportsGuy thinks so.
-Why Baywatch is not necessarily as bad as you’d think.
-The guys debate the merits of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales as SportsGuy delivers a vicious rant on the film.
-Why Wonder Woman is the pleasant surprise of the summer – and potentially of the year.
AN EASY LISTENING HOUR OF FUN FILM DISCUSSION!! SO GET YOUR LASSO OF TRUTH READY AND DOWNLOAD/STREAM NOW!!!
Friday, June 2, 2017
It’s that time of the year, folks! Get your popcorn and snacks ready, because the SUMMER MOVIE SEASON IS UPON US!
On this episode, join SportsGuy515 and Adolfo as they continue the JOURNEY TO 100 with the Official 2017 Summer Preview Show! As in years past, listen as they break down the months of May, June, July and August and preview the big releases coming up. Films such as Baywatch, Alien: Covenant, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Wonder Woman, Baby Driver, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Dunkirk, and MORE get the FP spotlight treatment! PLUS – listen to both their SPOILER and NON-SPOILER reviews for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2! OVER 2 HOURS OF GREAT FILM DISCUSSION!! SO HIT PLAY ON YOUR WALKMAN AND DOWNLOAD/STREAM NOW!!!
FORCED PERSPECTIVE E-Mail: email@example.com
SportGuy’s Twitter: @SportsGuy515
Adolfo’s Twitter: @Adolfo_Acosta
The Essential Films Twitter: @EssentialFilms
FORCED PERSPECTIVE Twitter: @FPMoviePodcast
FORCED PERSPECTIVE Facebook Page: facebook.com/fpmoviepodcast
SportsGuy’s Instagram: @sportsguy515
FORCED PERSPECTIVE Instagram: @fpmpodcast
(***use the hashtag #FPMoviePodcast to discuss the show!***)
Thursday, May 25, 2017
(also known as STAR WARS: EPISODE IV - A NEW HOPE)
1977 • 121 Minutes • 2.35 : 1 • United States
20th Century Fox
Cast: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter Cushing, Alec Guinness, James Earl Jones, Anthony Daniels, Peter Mayhew, Kenny Baker, David Prowse
Screenplay: George Lucas
Cinematography: Gilbert Taylor
Producer: Gary Kurtz
Awards & Honors
Winner: Best Art Direction-Set Decoration
Winner: Best Costume Design
Winner: Best Sound
Winner: Best Film Editing
Winner: Best Effects, Visual Effects
Winner: Best Music, Original Score (John Williams)
Winner: Special Achievement - Sound Effects
Nominated: Best Picture
Nominated: Best Actor in a Supporting Role - Alec Guinness
Nominated: Best Director
Nominated: Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly for the Screen
American Film Institute
AFI's 100 Years...100 Movies (1997): #15
AFI's 100 Years...100 Thrills: #27
AFI's 100 Years...100 Heroes & Villains: #14 (Han Solo – Hero), #37 (Obi-Wan Kenobi – Hero), #3 (Darth Vader - Villain)
AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie Quotes: "May the Force be with you." #8
AFI's 100 Years of Film Scores: #1
AFI's 100 Years...100 Cheers: #39
AFI's 100 Years...100 Movies (10th Anniversary Edition): #13
AFI's 10 Top 10: #2 Sci-Fi Film
Winner: Anthony Asquith Award for Film Music
Winner: Best Sound
Nominated: Best Costume Design
Nominated: Best Film
Nominated: Best Film Editing
Nominated: Best Production Design/Art Direction
Director's Guild of America
Nominated: Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures
The Essential Films
100 Greatest Movie Villains - #2 (Darth Vader)
100 Greatest Movie Heroes - #48 (Obi-Wan Kenobi), #12 (Luke Skywalker), #6 (Han Solo)
Winner: Best Original Score - Motion Picture
Nominated: Best Motion Picture - Drama
Nominated: Best Director - Motion Picture
Nominated: Best Actor in a Supporting Role - Motion Picture (Alec Guinness)
National Film Registry
Preserved by the Library of Congress in 1989
Writers Guild of America
Nominated: Best Comedy Written Directly for the Screen
For over a thousand generations, the Jedi knights were the guardians of peace and justice in the old Republic... before the dark times... before the empire.
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away...
In honor of the 40th anniversary, a look back at the film that started, pardon the pun, an empire. George Lucas was the ultimate underdog when making this cinematic classic. While he did have major box office success with American Graffiti, his previous venture into science fiction, already mentioned on this list, THX 1138 was considered a failure. Lucas' story of a young farm boy getting caught up with a Jedi knight, two robot droids, a space pirate and his 7 foot tall furry companion to save a princess from an evil galactic empire is the stuff of fairy tales and Flash Gordon serials. However as "simple" as the story was, the execution of it on film was far from it. Plagued with production problems and having a special effects that basically had to invent a new language of visual effects, it's a miracle the movie was released, let alone becoming one of the biggest movies in history. Not only did it spawn two direct sequels in Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, a (much maligned) prequel trilogy, a new trilogy with The Force Awakens, and a spin-off with Rogue One, but also an entire entertainment empire (there's that word again) that includes toys, video games, t-shirts, tv shows, cartoons, lunch boxes... if there's anything you can stamp a Star Wars logo on, then it exists. Not to mention that Industrial Light and Magic was born right alongside Star Wars, which has become the go-to visual effects house for major Hollywood productions. Some science fiction purists would argue that the saga's fantasy elements disqualify from consideration, to that I say: go back to your hive of scum and villainy.
Star Wars is such a rare instance of a perfect storm in filmmaking. From the story, to the cast, to the action, to the visual effects, to the music... everything working in perfect harmony to deliver THE defining film of a generation. Calling it anything less than a triumph is an understatement. George Lucas will forever be the a paradoxical figure to fans: a man who created an entire universe they love yet has gone back and "adjusted" so many things that they hate. But one must give credit where credit is due, his little space opera Flash Gordon rip-off created something so beloved by fans the world over.
As stated above, the story is simple: a young farm boy gets the call to adventure from a wise old magical hermit to fight the evil galactic empire. Along the way he learns the ways of the Force and the Jedi while outmaneuvering imperial troops. On a quest to save Princess Leia, who has detailed plans on how to destroy the empire's ultimate weapon, the young farm boy, accompanied by a space pirate, his giant co-pilot and a couple of bickering androids, the unlikely alliance save the day. With the exception of certain details, the spine of the story is pretty standard, Hero's journey kind of stuff. Even the opening "A long time ago..." invokes fairy tales. Stories like this had been done hundreds of times on film before, usually with shoe-string budgets, hokey special effects and terrible actors. But this is the first time a film of this nature was treated seriously by the studio (even though they spent many weeks panicking) with millions of dollars put into the set construction, costume design, location shoots and special effects. Suddenly this silly little space movie actually looked like an epic motion picture. And audiences lined up around the block to see it in record numbers.
Mark Hamill plays Luke Skywalker, our farm boy hero. Hamill was found through an extensive
The late great Carrie Fisher as the damsel in distress, Princess Leia, also joined the cast. Although this princess, as we come to find out, can do her own rescuing thank you very much. Fischer, daughter of Hollywood royalty in Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, beat out impressive names like Karen Allen and Jodie Foster for the role. Her brash, tough as nails kick-ass warrior princess worked well in contrast to Luke's naivety and Han Solo's charming arrogance.
Speaking of, Harrison Ford as his second most iconic character, behind Indiana Jones (though not by much) broke out as the star of the film. Although an experienced actor, even appearing in Lucas' American Graffiti, Ford was a late addition to the cast as Lucas initially refused to cast him. However, Lucas did ask Ford to help audition potential Luke Skywalkers and his performance eventually won him over, getting him the role over the likes of Kurt Russell, Al Pacino, Burt Reynolds and Sylvester Stallone. Ford would forever be linked with this character, a fact that he resented for many years, though he has since softened in his old age. Ford's portrayal of the rogue smuggler is so endearing that he would often times outshine the actual hero of the story, Luke Skywalker.
These three leads in particular had tremendous on-screen chemistry that would carry throughout the entire trilogy. It's a shame we will not get an on-screen reunion of all three in the new trilogy, due to story developments in Force Awakens and the real-life death of the beloved Carrie Fisher.
Sir Alec Guinness earned himself an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of the wise old Obi-Wan Kenobi, the mysterious hermit that lives in the desert and teaches Luke the ways of the Force. Guinness reportedly hated working on the film and, more so than Ford, resented his connection to the Saga for the rest of his life. It did not show on film, however, as his veteran performance gives the film much-needed credibility.
And let's not forget the iconic Darth Vader. One of the greatest (the greatest according to many) movie villain of all time. A menacing figure from his Ralph McQuarrie designed black suit of armor, his labored breathing, his imposing physical presence and the intimidating bass tones of James Earl Jones... Darth Vader is a villain fans both love to hate and hate to love. There is perhaps no movie villain more recognizable in history than Vader, and he still strikes fears into the hearts of filmgoers as recently as last winter's Rogue One anthology adventure.
Rounding out the supporting cast is Hammer Horror veteran, Peter Cushing, known for his roles in Dracula and Frankenstein films as the sinister Grand Moff Tarkin, the imperial commander of the Death Star. Cushing is at his most diabolical in the film, and much like Guinness, grounds the film with his veteran experience. His frequent Hammer co-star, Christopher Lee, would go on to appear in the prequel trilogy as Count Dooku.
Anthony Daniels has made an entire career of playing the constantly flustered C-3PO in movies, television, video games, radio plays... pretty much anything Star Wars. Good work if you can get it.
And of course let's not forget about the other notable cast members that perhaps don't get as much love since they were buried under make-up and costuming: Kenny Baker as R2D2, Peter Mayhew as Chewbacca and the hulking bodybuilder David Prowse performing the physical parts of Darth Vader.
As mentioned before, Lucas' imagination outpaced what was technically possible in movie making effects at the time. The film was revolutionary in terms of visual and sound effects. Lucas founded Industrial Light and Magic in 1975, in anticipation of this film. The legendary John Dykstra developed motion control photography to be able shoot the epic space battles that Lucas envisioned. ILM is still to this day the premiere visual effects company, rising above all others. In addition to creating magic with the Star Wars saga, ILM also paved the way in CGI effects in movies like Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), Young Sherlock Holmes (1984), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), The Abyss (1989), Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), Death Becomes Her (1992), Jurassic Park (1993), Forrest Gump (1994), Dragonheart (1996), The Mummy (1999) and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006). Gary Kurtz also revolutionized sound effects editing by creating the sounds for light sabers, blasters, starships and more, earning him a Special Achievement Academy Award.
And before we go, we cannot end the column without discussing John Williams' EPIC musical score. When it comes to all-time film composers, no one can touch John Williams. On his resumé are films like Jaws (1975), Superman (1978), Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982), Home Alone (1990) Jurassic Park and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001), but the all-time champion is his score for Star Wars and its subsequent films. It's iconic, it's inspiring and it is absolutely unrivaled. It instantly invokes cheers, nostalgia and a sense of adventure. There is no score like it nor will there ever be.
So today, on the 40th anniversary of this film, I salute you Star Wars: the silly little space opera that blew up and became a billion-dollar industry (now owned and operated by the Walt Disney Company.) Thank you for the memories you've given us and the memories you continue to make with future installments in the saga.
May the Force be with you.
Tuesday, May 23, 2017
|SIR ROGER MOORE|
May 23, 2017 is a sad day for James Bond fans everywhere, as Sir Roger Moore passed away after what his representatives call a "short but brave" battle with cancer. Moore started his career in the public eye as a fashion model in England, before being signed to a contract with MGM. Despite roles in Interrupted Melody (1955) and The King's Thief (1955), Moore did not cherish his time at the studio. He further went on to work under contract for Warner Bros., where his most notable work was a guest star in Alfred Hitchcock Presents and the starring role in The Miracle (1959). He truly became noteworthy in television, starring in several television series including Ivanhoe and Maverick, but rose to prominence as the titular character in the weekly spy thriller The Saint in 1962. The show ran for 6 seasons and 118 episodes. After returning to film and television work after The Saint ran its course, he was eventually cast as the next James Bond after Sean Connery finally relinquished the role following the 1970 film Diamonds Are Forever. Moore would debut his version of James Bond, very similar to his portrayal of Simon Templar in The Saint, and would define the role for a generation. Moore went on to play Bond in 7 films, tied with Sean Connery for the most number of appearances in the role. Moore still found time between Bond films for other projects including playing two famous on-screen detectives: Sherlock Holmes in Sherlock Holmes in New York (1977) and Inspector Clouseau in Curse of the Pink Panther (1983). His final Bond film was A View To a Kill in 1985 before Timothy Dalton took over the role in 1987 with The Living Daylights. Moore's career slowed down in the 90s and beyond, appearing in films few and far between. He appeared in the Jean-Claude Van Damme vehicle The Quest in 1996, the Spice Girls parody film Spice World in 1997 and the comedy Boat Trip in 2002 with Cuba Gooding Jr. His last on-screen appearance was a smaller role in a television movie reboot of The Saint. According to his IMDB he also had several voiceover work projects that are still in various stages of production. In honor of Sir Roger Moore, the following are his most essential films.
Directed by Lewis Gilbert
In Moore's best outing as James Bond, he teams with Barbara Bach who plays the mysterious and provocatively named KGB Agent XXX. Together they investigate the disapperance of hijacked nuclear submarines from the UK and the USSR in a joint mission to prevent World War 3. Bond and his newfound ally must escape helicopter attacks, skiing assassins and the evil Jaws, a metal-toothed hitman. This is the film that Roger Moore really defined the role for the next 20 years. From his smug one-liners to his submarine car, to quote the Oscar-nominated song, "nobody does it better." Nominated for 3 Academy Awards including Best Song, Score and Art Direction.
- But James, I need you!
- So does England!
Directed by Guy Hamilton
Live and Let Die marks the beginning of the Moore era. A lighter, campier, goofier Bond. Each and every Bond, from Sean Connery to Daniel Craig, has given their own spin and interpretation on the character. Roger Moore is no different. Moore’s take on the character is someone with kind of a dark sense of humor. This being the first of the 7 times he played the character, the camp isn’t quite as over-the-top, but it’s still there. The '70s was full of Blaxploitation films like Shaft and Superfly, and for some reason, someone at MGM thought it’d be a good idea to make a Bond Blaxploitation film. The results are kind of hilarious, with the word “Honky” being tossed around like it was going out of business, a voodoo witch doctor, and James Bond running around Harlem.
Oh, a snake. I forgot, I should have told you. You should never go in there without a mongoose.
Directed by John Glen
In this adventure, Bond is in a race against the Russians to recover ATAC, a British-encrypted device that could turn the tide in the Cold War. Along the way, Bond teams up with a Greek knockout named Melina Havelock (Carole Bouquet), a mysterious woman out for revenge against the people who killed her parents. A bit of a "whose side are they really on" plot unravels, combined with some excellent action sequences, including a mountain climb escape. It also includes Locque, a decent henchman that meets a very satisfying end from Agent 007. One of the better Bond films of the 1980s, boasting a great title song by Sheena Easton, this film would mark the last great Roger Moore Bond film.
- Him? He thinks I'm still a virgin.
- Yes. Well, you get your clothes on... and I'll buy you an ice cream.
Directed by Guy Hamilton
In this installment of the famous 007 franchise, Christopher Lee is Francisco Scaramanga, one of the most memorable Bond villains of all time. Scaramanga, of course, has plans on world domination, but he is also one of the deadliest assassins on the planet, doing his dirty work with the titular Golden Gun. Scaramanga uses said golden gun to kill his targets, and he NEVER misses. One shot is all it takes. So, this makes him already one of the best Bond villains ever right? The plot is silly, the action sometimes campy, but the final showdown between Roger Moore and Christopher Lee still ranks highly as one of the best.
- I mean sir, who would pay a million dollars to have me killed?
- Jealous husbands! Outraged chefs! Humiliated tailors! The list is endless!
Other Notable Films:
INTERRUPTED MELODY (1955)
THE KING'S THEIF (1955)
THE MIRACLE (1959)
THE MAN WHO HAUNTED HIMSELF (1970)
SHERLOCK HOLMES IN NEW YORK (1976)
THE WILD GEESE (1978)
NORTH SEA HIJACK (1980)
A VIEW TO A KILL (1985)
Friday, May 19, 2017
On today’s podcast adventure, Adolfo and Mark discuss the 1954 Alfred Hitchcock classic: REAR WINDOW!
On this week’s show:
- An in-depth discussion of Disney World Parks
- Jedis are gender neutral
- Adolfo’s favorite Hitchcock film
- Thelma Ritter: The MVP
- The inevitable “Simpsons” discussion
- How sound plays such an important role in the film
- Hitchcock’s growing pains in cinema
- The movie is completely set up in the first two minutes
- The believable cast of characters in the courtyard
- How the film turns the audience into voyeurs
- Grace Kelly at the peak of her Grace Kelly
- How Hitchcock places doubt in the viewer’s head
- Lars Thorwald is more sinister being kind to a dog than being cruel to it
- How long does it take to walk up a flight of stairs?
- How Hitchcock makes you feel bad for the killer
- Sacrificing realism for suspense
- An exercise in reaction editing
- Differences to the original short story
- Hitchcock likes to get around the censors
- Thorwald and Jeff mirror each other
- “It’s almost as if it’s being written for us”
- The camera as a phallic symbol
- The made for TV Movie remake starring Christopher Reeve
PLUS CONVERSATIONS ON:
- WINGS (1927)
- THE LODGER: A STORY OF THE LONDON FOG (1928)
- THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH (1934)
- THE 39 STEPS (1935)
- SABOTAGE (1936)
- THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD (1938)
- THE LADY VANISHES (1938)
- HIS GIRL FRIDAY (1940)
- IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946)
- IN A LONELY PLACE (1950)
- DIAL M FOR MURDER (1954)
- A MAN ESCAPED (1956)
- VERTIGO (1958)
- NORTH BY NORTHWEST (1959)
- PSYCHO (1960)
- “THE SIMPSONS” BART OF DARKNESS (TV Episode 1994)
- REAR WINDOW (1998)
- DISTURBIA (2007)
- AVATAR (2009)
- GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 (2017)
- The Essential Films: essentialfilmspodcast.com
- TWITTER: @EssentialFilms, @FPMoviePodcast, @Adolfo_Acosta, @Sportsguy515
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