Monday, September 26, 2005

In Space No One Can Hear Leif Garrett

I was in the mood for some sci-fi flicks recently. I had been watching so many westerns lately that I felt a brief change of pace might help whet my cinematic appetite. So, with a quick trip to the video store (and I'll spare you my rant against video stores), I rented the latest incarnation of The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy. I had already seen this movie once, but I wanted to check out what they did with the DVD. I must say it was pretty snazzy. Some throw away deleted scenes, some "making of" specials and the usual fare. But, the disc did have a cool random function (ie: the improbability drive) thats takes you to seemingly hidden bits and random parts of the movie and the extras. I was quite pleased with the treatment this flick got on DVD.

Following that newer foray into sci-fi flicks, I went back to one of my favorite decades for movies: the 1980's. So, I watched the original TV miniseries V. For years I have seen bits and pieces of the series, but I had never seen the TV movies that started it all. I rather enjoyed the original movie. It had elements of Arthur C. Clarke's "Childhood's End" as well as being an obvious retelling of Nazi occupation. Plus, Robert Englund kicked ass and he wasn't even Freddy Kreuger, simply amazing. There were lots of other notable 80s and TV actors in the movie, like Jason Bernard, Evan C. Kim, and the Dad from Boy Meets World. I've got the next part of the V series, The Final Battle, and I'll be watching it as soon as I have about 5 hours that I can spare.

Finally, on a sad note, I saw a Lee Van Cleef movie I didn't overly enjoy. God's Gun, a spaghetti western from the mid 70s which featured Van Cleef (in two roles), Jack Palance and Richard Boone (of Have Gun - Will Travel fame). Now, I'm quite familiar with poor dubbing, but this mvoie had notably poor dubbing. Worst of all, the American actors (like our man Lee Van Cleef) were dubbed into English by other people. I find it very distracting to see Van Cleef in action and hear him speaking with someone else's voice. Even the voice they used for Jack Palance was way off. God's Gun was really slow and had lots of potential that was simply wasted. Too much time was spent on young Leif Garrett's character Johnny, who goes mute for seemingly no reason. Personally, I was shocked that I didn't absolutely love a movie that had not one but two Lee Van Cleef's in it.

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