Jack Smight – The Illustrated Man (1969)

PRVEcZ Jack Smight   The Illustrated Man (1969)

thgc Jack Smight   The Illustrated Man (1969)

The Illustrated Man is a 1969 American science fiction film directed by Jack Smight and starring Rod Steiger. The film is based on three short stories from the 1951 collection The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury: “The Veldt”, “The Long Rain”, and “The Last Night of the World”.

The Illustrated Man comprises three science fiction short stories from Ray Bradbury’s collection of the same name. Howard B. Kreitsek wrote the screenplay that encompassed the stories “The Veldt”, “The Long Rain”, and “The Last Night of the World”, Jack Smight directed the film. Bradbury was not consulted for the adaptation.[1] The author sold story rights to the film in December 1967 for $85,000, but he did not sell the film rights. Since the collection included eighteen short stories, Smight chose three stories and used the carnival sideshow freak who appeared in the collection’s prologue and epilogue as the film’s primary narrative. As the freak, the director cast Rod Steiger, whom he had known since the 1950s. Continue reading

Richard Viktorov – Cherez ternii k zvyozdam AKA Per Aspera Ad Astra (1981)

bdws Richard Viktorov   Cherez ternii k zvyozdam AKA Per Aspera Ad Astra (1981)

thgc Richard Viktorov   Cherez ternii k zvyozdam AKA Per Aspera Ad Astra (1981)

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To the Stars by Hard Ways was first released in 1985, and the print being screened at Fantasia is the newly restored version that was shorn of 20 minutes and re-edited by the director’s son Nikolai Viktorov in 2001. Once given the Mystery Science Theatre treatment in a truncated version known as Humanoid Woman, To the Stars by Hard Ways has gained a cult-classic status among Russian youths who were attuned to the film’s blend of pop social commentary and stunning visual alchemy. The latter is a result of a varied cinematic style which incorporates poetic touches of Tarkovskian influenced naturalism (“earthy, organic” set design), shifting colour patterns (between sepia, monochromatic blue and saturated nature imagery), and simple yet inventive in-camera special effects (slow motion, reverse, dissolves, mirror shots etc.). To the Stars by Hard Ways functions marvelously well on multiple levels — as a trippy science-fiction social critique of environmental neglect, as a campy treat of mod visuals and Star Trek-influenced human and alien characters, and as a retro Communist propaganda piece. Even with these at times radical shifts in tone, the film remains a genuinely moving existential space opera.
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Jonathan Glazer – Under the Skin (2013)

cvpj Jonathan Glazer   Under the Skin (2013)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Jonathan Glazer   Under the Skin (2013)

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Jonathan Glazer‘s film is a gorgeous piece of film-making that leaves the narrative heavy-lifting to the viewers as it eschews a traditional setup and instead relies on visuals to clue us in as the story progresses. Expect complaints similar to those hurled at Upstream Color, that the story is unclear or convoluted, but such accusations are as baseless here as they were with Shane Carruth’s film. The details may be elusive, but the steadily engrossing narrative is clear. Continue reading

Vladimir Potapov – Posrednik AKA The Mediator (1990)

bb98c Vladimir Potapov   Posrednik AKA The Mediator (1990)

29f7c043f76a2bde437fd0d52a185152 Vladimir Potapov   Posrednik AKA The Mediator (1990)

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Morning of a silent provincial small town. The sleepy city is exposed silent to capture alien a landing. Newcomers are installed in people, destroying the person and subordinating a body to the new carrier. It is last fantastic film made in the USSR. 1990 – last year before disintegration of the Union.
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pixel Vladimir Potapov   Posrednik AKA The Mediator (1990)