I watched Hunger Games, Catching Fire again, as I promised.
Perhaps 5 stars was a little harsh. I liked it, and found it reasonably entertaining. It is just that to my mind, despite good cinematography, good acting and production values, the plot did not grab me, and I was able to predict almost every story development. No surprises. It is not even particularly original. It is modern version of Running Man, along with references to several other dystopic antecedents. Six stars. Final offer.
On Friday, Don gave me a small pile of DVDs to watch, all old classics, most of which I have seen before. I have had an all-night session with them.
The Day the Earth Stood Still (Michael Rennie). Still a classic. 7.7
When Worlds Collide An original apocalypse film. Plot holes notwithstanding, also a classic. 7
Forbidden Planet. Not just a classic, but a textbook example of the best of its era. 8
Destination Moon. George Pal again. Classic. Outstanding for its time. I thought the special effects were remarkable considering that it was made in 1950, two years before I was born. The science was reasonable too. Robert A. Heinlein was the author of the original story and one of the script writers. He was also technical advisor. 7.5
This Island Earth. Starts off interestingly enough, and somehow falls apart because the characters just don’t make it believable. Nor does the science. Very difficult to achieve the necessary willing suspension of disbelief with this movie. When a spaceship gets so far out into space that the earth is a small sphere far behind them, it is plain they are well out of the atmosphere. To enter the “thermal zone’ at this stage elicited howls of derisive laughter. Then at the last minute, seemingly as an afterthought as the film is ending, they suddenly introduce the bug-eyed monster featured so prominently on the publicity poster. To no plot end I could discern except to get the female lead screaming.
I had never seen this film before, and never want to again. 4.5
All these old movies reminded me of the very first science fiction film I ever saw at a cinema. I would really like to find it again. It was in black and white, I recall, and it absolutely enthralled me when I was about nine or ten. It was called I Married a Monster from Outer Space. Made in 1958 with a cheesy 1950s title that, it is generally agreed, belies its quality. I must look it out and see if it is really as good as I remember.