Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

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Robert Nason
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Robert Nason » Wed Jul 23, 2014 1:24 pm

I've read that seeing FATAL ATTRACTION wrecked more dates when it first came out than just about any movie ever made. And in Britain it even gave rise to a whole new definition for a certain kind of woman, called "bunny boilers."
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Complex
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Complex » Sat Aug 09, 2014 2:29 pm

FrankChurch wrote:Complex, I made this point to Harlan a few years ago on the Pavilion and Harlan had not remembered giving Back To The Future a bad review, saying to me that he liked it. But, if you read the book he pans the film. I guess he changed his mind and forgot. lol.


Not remembering giving bad review?! He constantly panned the movie throughout the book.

Mark Tiedemann wrote:Back To The Future is commercial as it gets but a gem of an entertainment. Very clever story. I'd actually beat someone down if they dissed it. lol.

Back To The Future---in fact, the entire trilogy---is a much smarter film(s) than it appears to be.


Yeah BTF movies are almost like exploring so called typical male psychology: 1st the Oedipus syndrome, 2nd being sports trivia god, 3rd playing cowboys.

And also another movie Harlan panned frequently in the book was the "Gremlins", but then again I never met anyone who liked "Gremlins" I just wonder if he then liked "Gremlins 2"? I mean that is goofball of a movie and they've put that "kid" character in the back seat and just let Gremlins do their shtick like some sort of Muppet Show movie. Also this movie seems very controversial in today's day and age, I mean just remember the culminating scene where all gremlins congregate with a plan to terrorize NY.

Then "Dune" I must admit that I am in love/hate relationship with this movie. I go trough the periods when I like it and then dislike it. There are few big problems with it like Harkonans who are nothing more then "filthy fags" who spent all they long indulging in their filthy and anti environmental homosexual fantasies - talking about one sided villains.
And also the book is un-filmable as one movie since it's too big, that's why Jorodovsky re-made the story to fit it in movie format in that never made Dune movie.

All in all I would of really liked if there were or at least was one film critic today like Harlan Ellison, but even without any book can almost stand as a mirror reviews to movies today with, not similar, but very same problems that movies then had according to Ellison and that is movies with obsessive paying of tributes to some other movies, lazy re-makes and f-ing Spielberg protegees who copy and tribute their stupid master.

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FrankChurch
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Aug 09, 2014 3:04 pm

I love Gremlins. A great entertainment. Gizmo is one of the great charactors. Wish mogwai's were real.

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Complex
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Complex » Tue Aug 12, 2014 4:39 pm

FrankChurch wrote:I love Gremlins. A great entertainment. Gizmo is one of the great charactors. Wish mogwai's were real.


Did you also love
Image??

And also that's very current form Harlan Ellison's essays is how much he complains that movies in 80's are nothing but special effects with no story. I always thought that that was the case with movies from 2000 and on. Especially in the last few years where there is really not even trying to make a story just, you know... It's like "Phantom Menace" marked the fall of cinema with all that computer f/x and nothing else.
But I guess in now day partly to blame are ticket prices which are very expensive and when people go and pay that huge amount they want a spectacle of multidimensional proportions.

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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Moderator » Tue Aug 12, 2014 5:50 pm

I agree with that sentiment if the only thing you look to is the Blockbuster. I wonder if Blade Runner could be made these days. Aliens possibly. Alien, not so much. Today you get Prometheus.

Thoughtful science fiction is relegated to smaller budgets and stories...which I have no problem with, as long as we continue to see films such as District 9, Moon, Man From Earth, Monsters, and various others every once in a while.

Has anyone else seen this?

http://www.blastr.com/2014-8-8/straczynski-bringing-sci-fi-classic-babylon-5-back-life-movie-reboot-2016
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FinderDoug
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby FinderDoug » Tue Aug 12, 2014 8:47 pm

Steve - I had seen that; there's part of me that finds Joe Strczynski is a canny businessman when it comes to announcements of this nature. Consider the re-announcement earlier this year of REPENT, HARLEQUIN (which was materially the same as the announcement that he'd adapted the story that made the rounds a few years ago) which served to stir up a lot of new talk around something he'd already finished some time before. My suspicion is less that there's a front-and-center interest in rebooting B5 (a story that he's already told to great effect, that would be difficult, if not impossible, to do justice in a film) as much as perhaps raising a little heat on other projects in the works by presenting the specter of a "I may not be available if you tarry" situation. Just a feeling I have. Would really be surprised, with what he's accomplished post B5, that he'd go backwards.

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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Ezra Lb. » Wed Aug 13, 2014 8:47 am

Wasn't Strczynski involved in a potential remake of FORBIDDEN PLANET a while back? I congenitally detest remakes and sequels especially of films that one cannot hope in their wildest dreams to equal.

I'm with Barber. Gimme something I haven't seen before. Something with a brain. Not just eye candy.
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Mark Tiedemann
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Mark Tiedemann » Wed Aug 13, 2014 9:10 am

My opinion of J. Michael keeps going down the more I hear of his "potential" projects. I think he did wonderful things with B5, but since then it's all been spin and hype and nothing that would cause me to change the channel, even if it got made.

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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Moderator » Wed Aug 13, 2014 3:30 pm

He has several fascinating things under way. The green lit tv program with the Wachowskis, several successful comic books and adaptations. He also wrote the basic drafts for THOR, so hardly an insignificant influence (from a boxoffice standpoint).

But I agree this may be an attention getter rather than a full commitment. He bills it as a reboot, so it's possible there are elements yet to be mined.

The FORBIDDEN PLANET remake -- which he has consistently denied was a true remake -- seems to have disappeared into the firmament.

http://screenrant.com/straczynski-forbidden-planet-briank-4173/
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FinderDoug
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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby FinderDoug » Wed Aug 13, 2014 4:45 pm

He had a story credit for the adaptation of WORLD WAR Z as well (which is still sitting in my Netflix queue); I figured he'd have gotten a little more big-screen screenwriting traction than that after CHANGELING (and equally bemused not only that RISING STARS never made it to film, but that HEROES had some real slant-ways similarities to some of the basic elements of Straczynski's comic series several years later). I'm curious to see how SENSE8 turns out, given the people involved.

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Re: Harlan Ellison's Watching.....

Postby Rick Keeney » Sun Aug 24, 2014 9:31 pm

One important aspect of WATCHING, for me, was that it upped the ante on my reading level/ability. I had to crank it up a notch, in terms of attention especially, when I first read some of this stuff my freshman year at Drake. HE's always been a helpful vocabulary builder. Same with Anne Sexton, James Joyce, Melville. Interesting that Dangerous Visions and A,DV prepared me for Joyce. I've always thought Joyce had a huge influence on many of the writers in those anthologies. I need to read back through those intros (and outros) with that in mind.

That said, WATCHING is a great fucken book.


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