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Thread: Invasion(s) Of The Body Snatchers

  1. #1
    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Invasion(s) Of The Body Snatchers

    Figured, after recently watching the original Don Siegel masterpiece and then last night the 70s remake, that the pod people should get some love around here.

    I consider the original to be a bit of a masterpiece and I know I'm not alone in that. It's incredibly tense and a great example of paranoid fifties American filmmaking. You can read it as an allegory about the 'red menace' or you can enjoy it as a slick slice of sci-fi - it works on both levels. Siegel's direction is great, McCarthy is amazing in the lead and the whole thing is incredibly effective despite (or because of?) it's reliance not on effect but on storytelling, acting and suspense.



    Which contrats a lot with the 70s version. This one is loaded with a lot of effects pieces, it's quite a bit more sensational in many ways and whereas in the original the pod people were quiet and showed no emotion, here they scream and run and do show more than a passing interest in self preservation. Pretty strong for a PG film, what with 'hoe to the head' gore effect and the (admittedly non-sexual) nudity in the last half hour. A fantastic ending, a solid performance from all involved even if Leonard Nimoy doesn't get to stretch much as an actor. A nice nod to the original with McCarthy's cameo (which you could see as something that makes this as much a sequel as a remake given how the original ends and that it took place in a different city).



    Haven't seen the Fererra version in a while, might have to dig that one out soon...

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  2. #2
    Scholar of Sleaze Paul L's Avatar
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    The Siegel film is a great movie; Kaufman's film is very good too. I didn't like Ferrara's take on the story when it first came out, but I rewatched it a couple of years ago and found it much more interesting than I remembered.
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  3. #3
    Pallid Hands Andrew Monroe's Avatar
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    I love the first two, really hard to say which one I prefer. The original did it first and really lays on the paranoia and has fine performances from the quartet, while the Kaufman film is just plain scarier imo. Really disturbing ending too. I have never warmed much to Ferara's version, I think it was a mistake to confine the action to a military base. The less said about the most recent one the better...ugh.

  4. #4
    I like 'em all. And don't forget SCTV's ZONTAR. Cabbages are scary.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hJX5dXIdTNk

  5. #5
    Girl Boss Jane Alison Jane's Avatar
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    I've enjoyed watching the first two. I had seen bits and pieces of the original ad my mom always loved it. Glad to finally see the whole thing. Neat how Kevin McCarthy showed up in the remake.
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  6. #6
    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Arrow has this slated for 11/18/13.

    Starring: Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum
    Directed by: Philip Kaufman
    Duration: 115

    Overview: WATCH OUT! THEY GET YOU WHILE YOU’RE SLEEPING!

    When health official Elizabeth Driscoll (Brooke Adams) notices that her lover has become strangely distant, this sets in train a series of shocking discoveries that sees both her and colleague Matthew Bennell (Donald Sutherland) fleeing for their lives to the sound of ear-piercing alien screams.

    Remakes of great films are usually on a hiding to nothing, but Philip Kaufman’s brilliant update of the 1956 classic is a rare and memorable exception. Transposing the action to the heart of San Francisco allows Kaufman to retain all the suspense of Jack Finney’s original story while adding caustic social commentary about the selfishness of the 1970s “me generation” that remains all too relevant today.

    But it’s a paranoid thriller first and foremost, based on one of the most psychologically terrifying of all premises – what happens when you can no longer trust not just the authorities but even your nearest and dearest?

    Special Features:
    -Limited Edition SteelBook™ packaging featuring original poster artwork
    -High Definition Blu-ray (1080p) presentation of the film
    -Original uncompressed Stereo 2.0 audio / 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
    -Optional English SDH subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing
    -Audio commentary with director Philip Kaufman
    -Pod Discussion: A new panel conversation about Invasion of the Body Snatchers and invasion cinema featuring critic Kim Newman and filmmakers Ben Wheatley and Norman J. Warren
    -Dissecting the Pod: A new interview with Kaufman biographer Annette Insdorf
    -Pod Novel: A new interview with Jack Seabrook, author of “Stealing through Time: On the Writings of Jack Finney” about Finney’s original novel ‘The Body Snatchers’
    -Re-Visitors from Outer Space: Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Pod – a documentary on the making of the film featuring Philip Kaufman, Donald Sutherland, writer W.D. Richter and more
    -The Man Behind the Scream: The Sound Effects Pod – a look at the film’s pioneering sound effects
    -The Invasion Will Be Televised: The Cinematography Pod – cinematographer Michael Chapman (Taxi Driver, Raging Bull) discusses the look of and influences on the visual style of the film
    -Practical Magic: The Special Effect Pod – A look at the creation of the special effects from the opening space sequence
    -Original Theatrical Trailer
    -Collector’s booklet featuring new writing on the film by critic David Cairns, as well as re-prints of classic articles including contemporary interviews with Philip Kaufman and W.D. Richter, illustrated with original archive stills and posters

    Steelbook version!

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    Non-Steelbook version!

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  7. #7
    Senior Member Lalala76's Avatar
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    Good film, shit artwork. I'm beginning to miss whats his face, the artist they once commissioned. Im not liking their new covers at all.

  8. #8
    The first 2 are classics and I've seen them many times. Ferrara's version actually has a lot going for it. There is great cinematography and music by frequent Ferrara collaborators Bojan Bazelli and Joe Delia, an intense performance by Forest Whitaker and a very creepy Meg Tilly. The concept of setting it on a military base is interesting, since like the pod people soldiers are taught to repress their individuality in the service of the organization, and this extends to a classroom scene where all the children except one paint the same image. Ferrara was notoriously out of his mind on drugs at the time which probably contributed to the film's failure, but I get the feeling it was mainly due to studio interference. 5 writers are credited (including Larry Cohen and Stuart Gordon who I assume were hoping to direct themselves) and the ending in particular seems rushed. It's a failure overall but an interesting one.

  9. #9
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    I like the art for the standard bd. Steelbook...not so much.

  10. #10
    I should watch the 70's remake. I liked the Abel Ferrara remake Body Snatchers though.
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