Tag Archives: 1982 movies

Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982) Review

Halloween III - Season Of The Witch - 1982

Halloween 3 Season of the Witch

Time: 98 Minutes
Age Rating: 860949[1]
Cast:
Tom Atkins as Dr. Daniel Challis
Stacey Nelkin as Ellie Grimbridge
Dan O’Herlihy as Conal Cochran
Director: Tommy Lee Wallace

Hospital emergency room Dr. Daniel “Dan” Challis (Tom Atkins) and Ellie Grimbridge (Stacey Nelkin), the daughter of a murder victim, uncover a terrible plot by small-town mask maker Conal Cochran (Dan O’Herlihy), a madman who’s planning a Halloween mass murder utilizing an ancient Celtic ritual. The ritual involves a boulder stolen from Stonehenge, the use of Silver Shamrock masks and a triggering device contained in a television commercial — all designed to kill millions of children.

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Halloween 3: Season of the Witch is known as the odd movie of the Halloween series, as it’s the only movie in the series to not feature the iconic fictional killer Michael Myers. After the character’s death in Halloween 3, John Carpenter wanted to take the series in a different direction away from Myers, and to be more of an anthology horror movie series, with each entry being a standalone story. The movie was poorly received, and led to the following sequels bringing back Michael Myers. However, Season of the Witch has been receiving something of a cult following more recently, and having seen the movie, I can see why. While it’s not as good as the original movie by any mean, it’s pretty good and I had fun with it.

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As said previously, Halloween 3: Season of the Witch isn’t really connected to the series. The most you get is footage of the original Halloween as a movie playing in the background at some points, that’s it. The story is campy for sure, and it does have a B movie feel to it. There’s a lot that happens in the movie, robots that look like humans, rituals and a Bond-like villain. That campiness does make the movie quite entertaining, and its quite creative, which was quite a breath of fresh air compared to many of the Halloween sequels which mainly just consisted of Michael Myers trying to kill people yet again. Season of the Witch also plays more like a mystery thriller than a horror film at times, with a sense of suspense and dread. Also, while I said there was some cheesiness to it, there is a good amount of horror, and some stand out gory and grotesque scenes that I’m impressed the filmmakers went for, especially with one particular iconic scene. The ending is really good too, and quite memorable. The movie is just under 100 minutes long and that was a pretty good runtime and keeps you on board throughout, though at times has some pacing issues.

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The cast do pretty well in their parts. Most of them weren’t anything special, but the standouts were Tom Atkins who works as the main character, and Dan O’Herlihy who works as the rather James Bond-like villain of the whole movie.

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The direction from Tommy Lee Wallace was pretty good, definitely having a pretty good handle of the movie. For one it’s a well shot movie, the cinematography is beautiful and helps convey a spooky atmosphere. It looks straight from the 80s, but it actually works to its benefit, especially considering the tone and overall story of the movie. The effects and makeup are detailed, grotesque and hold up well today. The synth score from John Carpenter is also great, a slower, darker sounding synth score.

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Halloween 3: Season of the Witch is surprisingly good, well made, and makes for quite an entertaining and creepy 80s horror flick. While there are many other Halloween movies I have yet to watch, I think Season of the Witch is one of the best movies in the series, and I feel like the anthology approach to the series might’ve been for the better, but of course we know what happened when the movie was released. If was just titled Season of the Witch and ditched the Halloween subtitle (rather than calling it Halloween 3), it probably would’ve done better with people back then. If you haven’t given this movie a chance and you like horror, I recommend checking it out.

The King of Comedy (1982) Review

Time: 109 Minutes
Age Rating: 120px-OFLCN_-_PG.svg[1]
Cast:
Robert De Niro as Rupert Pupkin
Jerry Lewis as Jerry Langford
Sandra Bernhard as Masha
Diahnne Abbott as Rita Keene
Director: Martin Scorsese

Rupert Pupkin (Robert De Niro) is a passionate yet unsuccessful comic who craves nothing more than to be in the spotlight and to achieve this, he stalks and kidnaps his idol (Jerry Lewis) to take the spotlight for himself.

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Despite it being very well praised by critics at the time, The King of Comedy generally seemed to receive a mixed reaction at the time, even bombing at the box office. It’s a really good movie, led by an uncomfortably great performance by Robert De Niro, and has gotten only more praise the older it gets.

The King of Comedy is quite an original and well written movie. Content wise this is definitely one of Scorsese’s cleaner movies, but this isn’t necessarily an easy watch by any means, in fact it’s very likely one of his more unnerving films. This movie can actually be quite uncomfortable to watch, especially as lead character Rupert Pupkin does more and more embarrassing things and crossing more lines. In fact I’d go so far as to say that I felt at least as uncomfortable watching Pupkin here as I did Travis Bickle in Taxi Driver. This movie is a social commentary about celebrity-obsession, and unfortunately in that regard I don’t think The King of Comedy will ever stop being relevant. The movie is definitely satirical, such as playing off the whole trope of the main character living with his mother and pretending that he’s on a talk show as he speaks to cardboard cutouts of guests and Jerry Langford (Jerry Lewis). It’s not a laugh riot as the title suggests, but it has a few moments of dark comedic humour. On the whole though it is a dramatic thriller for the most part. This movie has been compared to another Scorsese movie, Taxi Driver, with both movies following unstable protagonists played by Robert De Niro. Indeed they are similar in that regard but they are definitely different from each other, both movies are generally about different things and you’re certainly not going to see Pupkin attempt to kill someone, but they are both disturbed people that we have to follow. The ending is also similar to Taxi Driver’s in that it’s ambiguous, and both protagonists are unreliable. However I feel like your interpretation of the ending here will really matter in regard to your takeaway from the overall film, whether to take it literally or not. I myself haven’t decided yet, but I’d personally say that the literal way is a lot more disturbing.

Robert De Niro is fantastic here as Rupert Pupkin, and honestly I’d say that it’s one of his best performances. We’ve seen De Niro play plenty of tough and dangerous people, but this is such a different role for him, a sad, weird, obsessed man, and very uncomfortable to watch, I can barely see the actor in the performance. While De Niro is really great and is undeniably the star of the show, Jerry Lewis should also get more praise for his performance for Jerry Langford, the talk show host that Pupkin is obsessed with. He is definitely playing against type as he’s not a source of comedy really, as Langford he’s a more tired version of his own self. Definitely not a very nice person to say the least, but at the same time you can kind of get why he’d act how he does given Pupkin’s antics and boundary crossing. The supporting cast is also good. There’s Sandra Bernhard as another unstable fan of Langford, and Diahnne Abbott as Pupkin’s love interest.

Saying that Martin Scorsese directed this well is redundant at this point. Now it’s not nearly as flashy or memorable as in movies say Raging Bull or Taxi Driver, but I guess it didn’t really need to be that for the movie that it is, and it’s still on point all the way through. However there are some memorable scenes and setups, especially one involving Rupert Pupkin towards the latter portion of the movie.

The King of Comedy is not one of my favourite movies from Martin Scorsese but it’s generally known as one of his more underrated movies, and for very good reason. The story about celebrities and obsession with fame is still relevant to today, and of course the acting was really good, especially with a magnificent performance from Robert De Niro. It’s an uncomfortable movie to watch, nonetheless still pretty good and worth watching, especially if you’re looking to explore Scorsese’s filmography.

Blade Runner (1982) Review

Time: 117 Minutes
Age Rating: 860940[1] Violence and offensive language
Cast
Harrison Ford as Rick Deckard
Rutger Hauer as Roy Batty
Sean Young as Rachael
Edward James Olmos as Gaff
Director: Ridley Scott

Deckard (Harrison Ford) is forced by the police Boss (M. Emmet Walsh) to continue his old job as Replicant Hunter. His assignment: eliminate four escaped Replicants from the colonies who have returned to Earth. Before starting the job, Deckard goes to the Tyrell Corporation and he meets Rachel (Sean Young), a Replicant girl he falls in love with.

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I remember the first time I saw Blade Runner. It was 5 years ago and after having a lot of expectations for this supposed Sci-Fi classic… I was disappointed. I just found it boring and didn’t know what to think of it. I decided to revisit it recently in preparation for Blade Runner 2049 and I will say that I liked it a lot more than the first time, but I still don’t love it. However, Ridley Scott’s direction is impressive, and there are a number of the performances that I like, and it was definitely ahead of its time.

This movie is under 2 hours long but it has some pacing issues. For those who haven’t seen Blade Runner yet, make no mistake, even though its Harrison Ford in another sci-fi film, it’s nothing like Star Wars. It is generally slower paced, which I’m fine with, its just that at times it really drags and when it does, it really loses my interest. With that said, most of the time I was invested in the story, I was a lot more interested in the story upon a second viewing compared to my first viewing. This movie with its themes, story and setting definitely influenced a lot of later futirsitc/dystopian/sci-fi movies. The 3rd act was the highlight for me. For this version I watched The Final Cut, which from what I can tell is the definitive version of the film. I personally can’t comment on the other versions (four versions exist) as I’ve really only seen this one version. The ending of Blade Runner is a little bit ambiguous, and also depends on the different versions of the film.

Harrison Ford acts well as Deckard, the main character of Blade Runner. A lot of his complexities and characteristics are very subtle and Ford manages to convey that with ease, he’s not an easily read-able character. Sean Young is good as a replicant who Ford’s Deckard comes across. Rutger Hauer plays the ‘villain’ of the film, as the leader of the group of replicants that Deckard is hunting. Honestly, he was the stand out performance, he feels quite human despite not really being human, he almost doesn’t feel like a villain. He really impresses, especially in the third act.

Nobody does Sci-Fi like Ridley Scott. This movie is visually beautiful and there is so much attention to detail. This movie definitely looked great for its time and its still impressive today, there are some things that look dated as expected with a movie from the 80s, but most if it really works. The world feels real and the way that Scott decided to portray it was great. The score by Vangelis also really worked.

Blade Runner is good, with its acting, direction and story, however I can’t guarantee that you’ll like it, especially on the first viewing (I can speak from experience). I do have some issues with the pacing, and it isn’t the type of movie that you just easily watch, you really have to be in the mood to watch it. Even if I do like Blade Runner now, there’s probably a lot with the meanings and interpretations that I’m missing, and I don’t quite love it yet. However, if you are a huge Sci-Fi fan, I think you really should watch it as soon as you can. As for what Blade Runner 2049 will be like, I have no idea but I have faith in director Denis Villeneuve to deliver a solid follow up.

E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

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E.T

Time: 115 Minutes
Age Rating: 120px-OFLCN_-_PG.svg[1] Coarse language
Cast:
Henry Thomas as Elliot
Robert MacNaughton as Michael
Drew Barrymore as Gertie
Dee Wallace as Mary
Peter Coyote as Keys
Director: Steven Spielberg

A group of aliens visit earth and one of them is lost and left behind stranded on this planet. The alien soon finds a friend and in 10-year-old Elliot (Henry Thomas). While E.T. slowly gets acquainted with Elliot’s brother Michael (Robert MacNaughton), his sister Gertie (Drew Barrymore) as well as with Earth customs, members of the task force work day and night to track down the whereabouts of him. After being able to communicate with Elliot and the others, E.T. starts building an improvised device to send a message home for his folks to come and pick him up.

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E.T. is often called one of the greatest movies of all time. Maybe for its time it was, but looking at it now, it doesn’t seem to have held up, at least for me. The film isn’t bad, it’s decently made; but its aging has created some flaws as well as revealing some flaws in the movie that were there to begin with. In my opinion, this isn’t among Spielberg’s best or the best movies that ever made.

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The movie most of the time seems to focus on the relationship between E.T. and Elliot and while it wasn’t done badly; I didn’t really feel the connection between the two. As for how much emotion I felt, I didn’t really feel much when I watched it, even when I was 13 when I watched it for the first time I didn’t feel anything. Also I never really felt for any of the characters, none of them are unlikeable, they seem likable enough for a pass but I didn’t feel like we got to know them. Along with me not being attached to the characters, a lot of the scenes that had an impact on others didn’t make any impact on me for whatever reason; the bike scene is an example. Speaking of which (without spoiling anything), I am still wondering how E.T. managed to get those bikes to fly. This is also a problem, there are moments that just seem convenient that weren’t mentioned or explained previously. Another example is when (again I’m doing my best not to spoil anything) there is some deep connection between E.T. and Elliot but there is a point when something takes a toll on both of their conditions, which isn’t explained in the movie ever.

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The acting was okay by everyone. A lot of children are the main characters and they are well acted enough, they weren’t great performances but in comparison to some child actors of today, they are much better. However none of the performances made an impression or me and none of them stood out.

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This may just be a nitpick for me but I personally think that the filmmakers could have gone with a better design for E.T. I’m glad that it wasn’t of a small green alien (which a lot of representations of aliens are done like) but the look of E.T. really took me out of the movie; it looks like it came from the garbage compactor from Star Wars: A New Hope. The effects were good with the bike scene but there actually aren’t that many other moments with effects. The score for this by John Williams is pretty good but I wouldn’t say it is one of his best.

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E.T. isn’t a movie that I particularly love. I just wasn’t that attached to the characters and I had no emotional connection with anything in the movie. Despite this, countless people have been impacted by this movie; maybe they saw it in a critical part of their childhood; I will say that younger audiences will probably like it more than older people. If you haven’t watched it already, I recommend checking it out; even to just have an opinion on it. But keep in mind there is a chance that you may not like it as much as other people.