I got a lot done but saw that many students have stopped showing up to class. I returned home and dropped off some stuff. I went into the record store and bought the Blu-ray disc of “For All Mankind.” I ate lunch at Bongo Burger before preparing for class. I thought it was a productive lecture, if rather difficult. I thought about my successful students who have accomplished things at Cal and Stanford, and I was proud of them. After the last student finished the quiz I handed out, I went over to the theatre where the Flashback Feature was “Gremlins.” I miss someone like Hoyt Axton, who wrote “Joy to the World” and was a colorful character. I had forgotten that Corey Feldman was in this movie. He was there for the start of the disaster with the creatures. I had liked Keye Luke from “Kung Fu,” of course, and I felt sad to think that he didn’t have too many years left in 1984. One thing I took note of was the hints of “It’s a Wonderful Life,” with the snowy streets, the bank, and the swimming pool. Both Judge Reinhold and Phoebe Cates were in this movie, and they were both in “Fast Times at Ridgemont High.” I would say that my favorite scene was the battle the mother had with the creatures. She managed to kill three of them. Some of the people in this town were extremely stupid. Billy was an idiot for not keeping the first creature away from water, and he was duped into feeding chicken to the monsters after twelve o’clock. Doesn’t he have a wristwatch? I also thought that bringing his dog to work was exceedingly dumb. The teacher was unbelievably stupid for not taking precautions and for holding onto that Snickers bar. I thought he was a biology teacher, but he acted like he never dealt with animals before. The policemen were the most foolish I’ve ever seen in a movie. When Phoebe Cates told her story of how she learned there was no Santa Claus, a lot of people in the audience laughed. Either everyone had a bad sense of humor, or they were seriously lacking a sense of compassion. I thought the use of “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” was too obvious. I guess the movie “Snow White and the Seven Dwarves” has been released to theatres during the holiday season in the past, but the switch on the neighborhood seemed too sudden. The shot that looked fake was the one of the creatures marching down the street. I think this crowd thought it was funny to see the bar scene. I noticed the robot from “Fantastic Planet” and Rod Taylor’s Time Machine in one shot. When I think that the movie didn’t make use of CGI, the theatre scene is pretty impressive. I imagine there were a lot of complications in setting it up. I thought this movie felt like a long cartoon, although the cartoon characters were nastier than normal. This is the type of movie where everyone just stands still waiting to be killed. There is an unreal quality of their behavior. I kept wondering about the flashbulbs on Phoebe’s camera. It seemed just a bit like “Rear Window.” The lesson seemed to be that people in their American culture are too irresponsible an inattentive to deal with important things. Billy seemed too clumsy with his dog to take care of his unusual little pet. Even the teacher stupidly left a sandwich near one of them. What kind of idiotic teacher would be so careless? I noticed things like an E.T. doll and some Coke product placement, and William Schallert trying to mail some letters. Schallert is still alive and is 93 years old. The voices of Howie Mandel, Don Steele, and Michael Winslow were featured, and there were cameo appearances by Steven Spielberg, Jerry Goldsmith, and Chuck Jones. The creatures seemed like the smartest living beings in the universe in the way that they were instantly able to do all those things. I don’t know how they managed to get the film projector going. They seemed to know the words to songs that they’d never heard before. My favorite songs from the film were Darlene Love’s “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” and Johnny Mathis’ “Do You Hear What I Hear.” I have to admit that I didn’t notice any Peter Gabriel on the soundtrack. I did notice some crappy 1980s electronic music that I blamed on Michael Sembello, who left his unfortunate mark on “Flashdance.” I read that Zach Galligan beat out Kevin Bacon, Emilio Estevez, and Judd Nelson for the role of Billy. I could see Kevin Bacon in the part, partly because I saw him in “Tremors,” and he fit into that part, but I couldn’t see Judd Nelson as Billy. Judd Nelson was my least favorite member of the Brat Pack. I found it hard to watch him in anything, much less a subversive Christmas movie. I left the theatre feeling pretty good, as if I’d just seen Snow White myself. I can’t even remember whether or not I ever saw “Gremlins 2.” I would find it hard to think that anyone could have done much with this concept a second time around. I read that it was released on the same day as “Dick Tracy,” which I did see during that week in 1990. “Gremlins 2” did not make as much money as “Back to the Future Part III,” Edward Scissorhands,” and “Arachnophobia,” which were released in the same year. I got home and left the television on to Stephen Colbert, not paying much attention to what he was saying. I stayed up to watch Joe Montana on the James Corden show, and a little bit of the Banacek episode “Rocket to Oblivion.” Corden had difficulty catching the football. I heard that the Patriots won another game. Some of the people who died on October 30 include Samuel Fuller (1997), Steve Allen (2000), Jam Master Jay (2002), and Robert Goulet (2007). Today is a birthday for Harry Hamlin (64), Henry Winkler (70), and Grace Slick (76).  According to the Brandon Brooks Rewind radio segment for October 31, Orson Welles broadcast his War of the Worlds radio program in 1938, caused a panic among listeners who thought the alien invasion was real.  In 1970, Elton John released his album “Tumbleweed Connection.”  In 1980, “It’s a Living” made its debut on ABC.  In 1981, “Halloween 2” was released.

This entry was posted in Movies. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s