As I've recounted in these electronic pages many times before (but evidently, fandom assembled is in a mood to rehash),
Star Wars changed the way sci-fi/fantasy movies were made and definitely changed how they were marketed. Judging by the comments in last week's issue, there is quite a division on whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, with most supporting a positive influence.
At the time the original
Star Wars came out --- the "episode" most young people likely refer to as Chapter 4: A New Hope, but the rest of us old folks remember as simply Star Wars --- it was 1977 and I was still reeling over the titanic disappointment that was Dino DeLaurentis's King Kong the previous Christmas. The last "big" sci-fi release by a major studio had been 1976's Logan's Run, and pre-production had already started on Superman and Close Encounters which I'd found far more compelling stories to follow. That the director of American Grafitti had conned über-star Alec Guiness into a big-screen sci-fi picture caught my attention but I didn't attach all that much relevance to it at the time. Yeah, bad call.
It was fully two months after its release that a friend of mine from high school talked me into going to an afternoon show. The movie had created all kinds of buzz and I went to see what it was about. If that kind of delay seems uncharacteristic of Ye Olde Editor, well, that was me at the time, but I learned my lesson since. If anything creates a buzz, I'm nearly always the first in line now. And usually, I'm disappointed. But...I digress.
I liked the movie OK, but it didn't create the compulsive urge in me to go see it again four-hundred times like it did so many others. What I usually said about it was
I found it to be a natural evolution of how sci-fi movies are made, that is, more hi-tech and using computers for aid. I didn't find the story to be all that original, in fact, it seemed obviously rooted in typical myths and legends, with the young innocent farm boy thrust into a warriror/leadership position by way of an aging mentor to aid in winning a great war against evil. In essence, elements of everything from King Arthur to Lord of the Rings to even, yes, The Wizard of Oz. (I remember a terrific review of Star Wars in the "Rocket's Blast Comic Collector", a Florida-based fanzine, that insisted Star Wars was completely wrapped around The Wizard of Oz, where Luke = Dorothy, Han Solo = The Scarecrow, Chewbacca = The Cowardly Lion, R2D2 = Toto, C3PO = The Tin Man, Darth Vader = The Wicked Witch, etc, etc.)
Eventually, I grew to appreciate
Star Wars as the pop culture phenomenon it was, and is. For me, moreso the technical evolution (computerized cameras and go-motion being the most relevant, I think). But for the world at large, a new modern-day myth was born that a generation embraced as the be-all and end-all of sci-fi fantasy to which all others would forever be compared.
Post Script #1: Go-motion instantly rendered as obsolete traditional stop-motion animation, at least long enough for the original Clash of the Titans (1981) to be derided for featuring the great Ray Harryhausen's "old-fashioned" effects (I remember the reviews). Of course, go-motion would be replaced with CGI, ironically rendering the original Star Wars trilogy's effects as "old-fashioned" before George Lucas started his compulsive remaking fetish.
Post Script #2: The Sci-Fi club I was a member of in 1977 (The Andromeda Society) was able to contact George Lucas about the talk of an alleged trilogy (or nine-ology, depending on what month he was interviewed), and we were told -- and yes this is a quote -- "The only thing we know for sure is that Darth Vader turns out to be Luke's father!" THIS WAS BEFORE 1980 AND I ALREADY KNEW THE "SURPRISE" ENDING. The club was originally founded by Star Wars fans, who reacted to the news with a groan (I know, I was there). I myself blew it off until The Empire Strikes Back came out, where I waited in line smugly content I already knew the ending.
Anyway, that's my personal history regarding
ON JOHN FORSYTHE
POSTED BY NOLAN B. CANOVA, TUESDAY, APRIL 6, 2010
Veteran TV actor John Forsythe died last week at the age of 92. We received several comments about it in last week's PCR, and Mike Smith did his usual bang-up job
summarizing Forsythe's life and career.
While the news agencies were quick to spotlight John Forsythe as the voice of Charley in
Charlie's Angels, and his monumental presence in Dynasty, my first introduction to Forsythe was as the lead in the 1957--1962 TV series, Bachelor Father. For those seeking a historical context, this would be during approximately the same years as the original Leave it to Beaver.
While a single parent raising a child was still a taboo subject for television at the time,
Bachelor Father skated around this by making Forsythe's character, attorney Bentley Gregg, the never-married legal guardian of his niece Kelly, whose parents were killed in an accident (I don't recall them getting any more specific than that). The series started when Kelly (Noreen Corcoran) was just entering puberty, thus paving the way for comical conflict. Her calling him "Uncle Bentley" and him refering to her as his "niece" implied a family relationship, but through which relatives is foggy.
This was also at the time it was still OK to have an Oriental "houseboy" as a manservant. Peter (Samee Tong), far too old to be a "boy", played the ethnic stereotype well and often got the best lines. Common in television and movies back in the day, it probably wouldn't play too well today.
Funnily, though the ratngs for
Bachelor Father were never stellar, it is one of the rare TV series to play on all three major networks during its run.
While watching repeats of the series on RetroTV, I figured Forsythe to be about 35 to 40 years old. This bore out when I reverse-engineered the dates from his time of death to discover when he started the series he was about 39 years old. Believeable for someone portrayed as somewhat of a playboy.
His distinctive voice and high-class poise made him castable in roles of authority. He was a show-biz legend and deservedly so.
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ED [13-04-2010 05:27] Mike - those are great suggestions and are already in the Retrorama cabinet. Tom Chapin has two 16mm prints of his Make a Wish program that he got from me. One of them is Star and I forget the other but I transferred them both to video before I sent them to him. Petrey [13-04-2010 02:04] I know we hear (at least when I used to read or watch the news) that Gay male priests molest young boys. Teachers, usually women 'traumatize' young boys as well with their acts of perversion. But I was just curious. When was the last time a homosexual male teacher was mentioned or caught doing anything that was in the media any of you may have read or seen on the news or a gay adult male having sex with a male minor? Chat rooms don't count, just kidding
Michael [12-04-2010 20:59] As they (the Munchkins) were my guest I made sure that they were well taken care of, including very nice places to eat for dinner (I LOVE expense accounts). On the last day, as we said goodbye at the airport, Jerry Marin shook my hand and thanked me for treating everyone like a friend, not an exhibit. He couldn't believe we took them out to dinner every night, and to nice restaurants. "Normally they drop us off at the hotel with a bucket of chicken." Wow.
Perhaps in your upcoming pieces you could do something about some of my old favorite live action shows (Banana Splits, H.R. Puffinstuff, etc. And "Make A Wish." Tom Chapin told me he's begged ABC to put it out on DVD but they refuse. Bastards! Michael [12-04-2010 20:55] ED, I think just being associated with the film was enough to make Meinhardt popular. The fact that he had a speaking part, even if not his voice (though my understanding is that the voices were sped up some to make them "munchkin-like"). Even Clarence Swensen, a soldier, proved quite popular when I hosted the group. Of course Jerry Marin was the most fun because he shared so many stories about his life in Hollywood. Also, for some reason the film has a HUGE gay following. I know when they were in KC one of the local weathermen (gay, by the way) begged me to bring them to the station so he could interview them. When they got out of the van he practically squeeled with delight. My favorite compliment came from Jerry Marin (continued above) Petrey [12-04-2010 13:06] For those that are remotely interested, we had FRIGHT NIGHT every Saturday eveninhg. It was a guy who used to come on at 7PM, shine a flashlight in his face from the chin up and talk in between commercials. Creepy host but not as cool as the Dr. here in Tampa. I have a movie that someone re-created out of love and respect for those days. FRIGHT NIGHT was pretty popular when I was a first grader. Petrey [12-04-2010 12:51] I definitely wasn't pointing the finger in your direction Ed. You're a person that could teach people about staying young in the mind :)
I was just saying 'we' in general. Ya know, 10 years ago we had an abundance of kids who crammed the theatre and some would cause trouble. Simply put these kids around here had no place to get their angst out and the theatre was a babysitting service.
Well, I told Mark (who was the Britton Plaza cop) these kids just needed a pool hall or arcade. Something to keep them out of trouble and a place to have fun, with security in place of course. He acted like I'd just called his momma a whore. Some adults are so far removed from what it was like to be a kid that it's sad. ED [12-04-2010 08:47] Perhapse in general Petrey but I have never forgotten what it was like to be young and I work very hard not to. Petrey [12-04-2010 08:09] Mike you nailed it. The casting of the two leads proved to be a hit with audiences as well since it beat out the COTT. Petrey [12-04-2010 07:44] Actually what I was driving at Ed is the fact that 'we' adults have became so wrapped up in ratings and what matters to us that we have forgotten what it was like to be young once. This early morning Saturday programming switchover has been around for quite a while, not just recently. ED [12-04-2010 06:53] Mike - Meinhardt Raabe didn't really have a speaking part in Wizard of Oz, his lines were dubbed. I don't think any of the Munchkins spoke in their own voices. Raabe had a very long and interesting life. I know Wizard of Oz is a classic film but it always surprised me that people fixiated on that so much when he was only on screen for five minutes, was under heavy makeup, and his voice was dubbed. ED [12-04-2010 06:32] Petrey - You're point is well taken but I think it's the video games that are keeping kids away from Saturday mornings. That and home video where you can watch anything any time you want. I suspect in the not to distant future, the types of elements that bond people like the reader's of this site will be gone as collective experiences dry up.
Steve - I think I was too young when I watched the Jay Ward stuff to understand what being stoned was but I sure knew that Bullwinkle was hip and there was a lot more going on there than their was on other cartoons. Petrey [12-04-2010 01:32] Ed - I feel very sorry for the kids today that do not get to experience the animation and fantasy gold we had as youngsters way back. Now for some reason they think the kids want news, news and more news on Saturday morning.
I used to live off Lonney Tunes and Saturday Morning helped me get my fix along with after school syndication on channel 41 WDRB Louisville Ky. Super Heroes were more of my cousin's thing because it required thinking, ha!
Cool Article! Steve [11-04-2010 13:53] ...and Hoppity Hooper, too! Steve [11-04-2010 13:37] Did anyone besides me believe that Jay Ward, Bill Scott, whoever wrote Klondike Kat, Tennessee Tuxedo, The World of Commander McBragg and others were stoned when they wrote these episodes? Me and my brothers used to talk about how they almost had to be high to come up with such wacky scenarios. They were as funny as hell in a Marty Allen sort of way. Unlike marijuana however, these cartoons were highly addictive. ED [11-04-2010 06:45] R.I.P. Dixie Carter - she was 70. Cause of death has not been disclosed. Michael [10-04-2010 21:34] Oh, and I actually burned my special edition boxed THX approved laser disc set of the original "Star Wars" trilogy to DVD in the early 2000s. I let Matt borrow them at JAWSFest and I think he may still have them. Hmmmmm. Michael [10-04-2010 21:32] Petrey, I know what you mean. As for movies coming out in different formats I try to keep up to date but it's so hard anymore when they keep reissuing things. One of my prime examples is Boogie Nights, which I had on VHS, then Laser Disc, then the special Laser Disc (which was later recalled) that had a great John Holmes documentary on it. When I got into DVD I bought it and then bought the special two disc version which had a note on the back from the director that said "THIS IS BOOGIE NIGHTS - if you bought anything in the past you did not get the complete package" Great, does that mean you'll be giving me my money back for the other five versions I've bought? I just started with Blu Ray, but will only buy those films I think will benefit from the technology image wise. Not going to replace everything like I've done in the past (says the man with about 250 laser discs on his shelf!) Petrey [10-04-2010 18:28] Yeah, I don't know why Beneath had the GP snipe at the end but we are talking about syndication so it was probably 16MM.
So that was on the Blu-Ray disc Matthew?
You know this might sound crazy to some younger readers but old timers can sympathize with what I'm about to say.
Think about all the poor bastards that had climbed the ladder every time a movie comes out on a video format that they purchase because it is 're-mastered'.
CBS/FOX "Star Wars" videotape
CBS/FOX "Star Wars" RCA/CED Video disc
CBS/FOX "Star Wars" LaserDisc
FOX Re-Mastered Widescreen "Star Wars" LaserDisc
Then the Ultimate Editions of "Star Wars" Trilogy on Laser Disc
THEN in 1998 I see people dumping their Laserdisc versions because DVD hit strong and everyone 'assumed' a DVD release would be soon. Well it was 2005 or there about, ha!
NOW,when Blu-Ray releases the Star Wars series, this person will probably buy the 're-mastered' version yet again. Just a crazy thought. $$$$$$ matthew [10-04-2010 17:05] late in the game here, and maybe this was answered and i missed it. but the only apes film to receive a rating other than G was Conquest of the Planet of the Apes, which debuted with a rating of PG. it was originally rated R due to extreme violence and the ending, which was changed along with cutting some violence to guarentee a PG rating.
this according to an Apes documentary on blu ray. Petrey [10-04-2010 16:32] Michael - Imagine if they remade LADY IN RED. They'd have to change the line to "WE GOT SHAVED! WE GOT SHAVED! Ha!
Heads up on Warner Archive discs. Read the message Boards for more. J.MILLER [10-04-2010 12:32] Platinum Dunes is remaking Monster Squad? Nothing is more horrifying then that!
Nolan - So George Lucas personally told you guys the ending? Cant believe this is the first time Ive heard you tell this story God [10-04-2010 11:47] 94 is a nice, long life. It should be celebrated, my children! Chris Woods [10-04-2010 10:12] Lisa - I enjoyed your article and thought it was very cool you formated the article like a poem. I also liked this line, "Most of you probably find that sentence more horrifying than news of Platinum Dunes' upcoming remake of The Monster Squad, but hear me out." That was cool.
ED - Liked your article on Saturday Morning Cartoons. Every Saturday when I was a kid I would go through the dial and flip through the line-up on NBC, ABC, and CBS. Chris Woods [10-04-2010 10:08] Nolan - Enjoyed your write up on your Star Wars experience. That's cool your group got to talk to Lucas and that's crazy he told you guys the ending to Empire. I think I was the right age when Star Wars came out and it was a great impact on my childhood. Once I read one of the many reasons why Lucas wanted to do Star Wars that he felt the kids of that generation didn't have the sci-fi adventures and larger than life characters that he had growing up with Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon. Also when it was released it was a film everyone liked and everyone knew about no matter what your age was and it was a film that a kid and an adult could enjoy. ED [10-04-2010 10:01] I just read his obituary. It said that he's not merely dead,
he’s really most sincerely dead! ED [10-04-2010 09:44] That is a shame about Meinhardt, he was a really nice guy but 94 is a darn good run and he was ambulatory for most of thos 94 years. I had heard his health had deteriorated badly in the last year and that he was moved to a fully assisted living area. This was part of the reason that Orange Park did not do the Wizard of Oz festival this year. Apparently Jerry Marin is the last of the Munchkins still getting around these days. Terence [10-04-2010 09:26] R.I.P. Dick Giordano 1932-2010 Michael [10-04-2010 08:22] R.I.P. the incredibly sweet Meinhardt Raabe (the coroner in "The Wizard of Oz.") He died today of a heart attack at the age of 94. Andy [10-04-2010 08:17] Terence, get a chance to listen to the MGMT album on their website yet? It's not like the first album, which is sort of what I was hoping, and I didn't really like the new one after the first listen. After the second, it began to grow on me. Lonnie [09-04-2010 11:57] Ed,Nolan-They have THE ARCHIES showing everyday @ NOON on RetroTV. ED [09-04-2010 04:47] LOL! Good memory Steve! I too would love to see Underdog, Tennesee Tuxedo, Go Go Gophers and the other Total Television characters on TV again. It's too bad Boomerang quit showing really old cartoons and is mainly stuff from the last ten years now. Steve - Mutant - Beasley [09-04-2010 04:07] Awesome ED! I was a huge fan of the Go Go Gophers! I still would be if it came on TV once in a while.
Here comes the Colonel and the Sergeant,
Both are a-roarin' and a-chargin'.
Go go gophers, watch them go go go. Michael [08-04-2010 20:47] Petrey, funny how great minds think alike. When I was writing about "The Woman in Red" I so wanted to add "WE'VE GOT BUSH!"
Let me say here, as I often repeated to an angry parent whose kid had snuck into an "R" rated film (right after I'd say, "don't they know they're not supposed to sneak in?"). The rating system is merely a recommendation. It is not a law. If I wanted to sell a 10 year old kid a ticket to an NC 17 movie I could. Of course, the bad publicity would kill my business. All PG 13 really did was allow more violence and the non-sexual use of the word "f***" no more than twice. But God forbid we should see a naked butt or a pair of breasts.....R rated filth. I like Nolan's "Bull Durham" story....even better were the little old ladies pouring out of "Slap Shot" at the Britton, unable to comprehend how Paul Newman could spew that filth from his mouth!
Great movie, by the way!
Whoa, had to retype the above. Apparently you can't say f*** here. J.MILLER [08-04-2010 18:48] http://www.crazedfanboy.com/fo rum/posting.php?mode=newtopic&f=2
No column from me this week but if anyone is interested I posted my thoughts on the message board for a new CULT FILM NIGHT in Tampa...
Feel free to comment either here or on the message board...
Nole - My appologies if this is spamming Im not trying to break any rules...Just wanting to get some convo jump started in support of this cool event ED [08-04-2010 17:50] Hi Will! Ah yes, Sting of Death the trash bag monster. What a classic. You are correct about those ads being from DC comics. Just another example of what time machines those old comic books are today. William Moriaty [08-04-2010 17:31] Once I fire up the ol' VCR it'll be Bill Grefe's Florida klassik, "Sting Of Death" and for those who might remember his appearance on pre-Dr. Paul Bearer Creature feature and Shock Theater, italy's super-hero/wrestler Superargo! in my next series of Schlock! William Moriaty [08-04-2010 17:28] Muy excellente Senior ED!
I remember the '68 CBS Saturday morning line up very well and have several DC Comics from that era with those same ads you used!
Great job as always ED! Non-Rhyming Poet Lisa [08-04-2010 15:15] Re: correction -- My bad. APOCALYPSE NOW references two or three Eliot poems and Kurtz recites "The Hollow Man" (although I think that was in the re-release version or in the deleted scenes on the DVD or something like that but I can't remember for sure). But you were right about "the horror, the horror!" being a quote from HEART OF DARKNESS. Guess I got 'em mixed up, and my fact checker is on vacation. I made the correction. Thanks.
Steve and Nolan -- Too funny! LOL And yes, limericks are poems!
Nolan -- Speaking of the apocalypse, my having a column up early is one of the signs of end times, isn't it? (I'm guessing that having poetry discussions in Readers Comments is another sign?) :) Just a correction [08-04-2010 14:10] "The horror! The horror!" does not come from T.S. Eliot's "The Hollow Men". It comes from Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, which is the novella Apocalypse Now was based on. Eliot's poem, as alluded in the beginning epigraph, is also inspired by Conrad's book. Nolan [08-04-2010 13:25] It's ALL poetry, for cryin' out loud! Limericks, haiku, short-form and long-form, rhyming and non-rhyming are all forms of poetry. That it's a limerick means it's typically for a gag, but, you know, so what.
Steve: Congrats on the motorcycle sale. Good luck with the surgery, then you'll be booking your flight home. Steve [08-04-2010 13:05] I think ED may be right, but I don't really know what difference is. I've been drawn to limericks mostly because of the oft-times ribald, yet funny...nature of them. Steve Beasley [08-04-2010 13:00] Lisa S, writes for Crazed Fanboy.com
and entertains her fans with aplomb
She writes articles about movies
and Hollywood cuties
Her words have the power of napalm
BTW, folks...I sold my motorcyle yesterday! I even earned $50 above what I paid for it...meaning I was able to ride for free the last year and a half! Cool!
Next bariatric surgery and then....HOME! ED [08-04-2010 12:43] Actually Nolan that's a not a poem it's a limerick isn't it? Nolan [08-04-2010 10:41] Lisa,
Very thoughtful piece on National Poetry Month, thank you.
Your column is only the second this week
Together with Jason you've filled what I seek
My goodness, Fangrrly
You're even here early
Let's hope all the others soon follow your streak!
OK....poetry was never my strong suit.
Nolan [08-04-2010 04:41] Andy: To the best of my knowledge, the MPAA's rating system is not "owned" or trademarked by anyone, and if they deep-sixed it tomorrow, nobody would go broke over it. The ratings system itself generates no revenue, it's an agreed-upon and voluntary system, that no one is legally bound to subscribe to. Distributors could make up their own ratings system, in fact, but it would only confuse the public, which defeats the purpose of parental guidance---its original intent.
You can always send out a movie as "Unrated" or the more apprehensive-sounding "This film is not yet rated". That might've been what got Janet Reno's panties in a bunge about it, but I don't remember.
Unrated and NC-17 rated films are much more difficult to market in these days of obsessive political-correctness. Chris Woods [07-04-2010 20:57] New Schlock Review posted: NIGHTMARE Andy [07-04-2010 20:05] That's the reason why I can't watch many horror films, especially ones that are marketed as summer blockbusters...there are just too many cliches. I think the "let's split up and each seek out the villain" cliche gets me every time.
I thought the MPAA had some sort of ownership over the G through R ratings, which allowed any distributor to label their film as X and it would still be "legal." Maybe I'm getting my stories mixed up? Petrey [07-04-2010 15:37] OK, I'm getting just a little bit tired of the "I CAN'T GET A SIGNAL" on my cell phone cliche in most of the horror films today.
Earliest film I remember to do this was "BREAKDOWN' with Kurt Russell when his signal was dying, more of a suspense film though. Great movie for those who HASN'T seen it.
Anyone have any earlier examples? This bugs me more now than the lighting on a set reflecting off a pair of sunglasses. Petrey [07-04-2010 14:39] Nolan - IMDB has about 50 episodes of the ZONE to watch immediately, of course with commercials.
Ratings system was a joke sometimes over the years. Old people coming out of an 'R' rated movie asking to talk to the manager, that they have not heard such filthy language, ha! The film was BULL DURHAM.
I loved it when Ed (our union projectionist) put the preview for BODY PARTS on the front of THE FOX and the HOUND. Ha, ha! So many kids crying and some upset parents screaming the manager down, priceless!
Then there was the family that cried when we put an X-men teaser on the front of ROAD TO ELDORADO! We had to explain to them that ratings wise we were totally within our rights. I would have been more offended to have to sit through the soundtrack that God awful film had. ELTON JOHN, NOOOOO!!! Brandon [07-04-2010 13:17] I'll confess I hardly meant to create a firestorm. I didn't write a column, but just felt it bared mention, on our site and here on CFB.
On a similar note, this week marks the Anniversary of "2001: Space Odyssey" - another milestone in our Sci-Fi history archives.
2001 was a monumental pre-cursor to "Star Wars" and the Sci-Fi genre. I believe should be more mindful of these accomplishments, share our memories etc....
And no, I've made no mention of this on DOB Nolan [07-04-2010 10:29] To Andy: Yes, that's where I catch Bachelor Father as well. I'm also catching up on Daniel Boone on Ch 8.2 on around 7:00am, weekdays. As an FYI, on 32.2, they've reduced the showings of The Outer Limits to a two-hour block on Saturday morning, 6--8, and currently I can't find The Twilight Zone at all. On my nights off, I watch Peter Gunn and Alfred Hitchcock on, I think, 8.2 around midnight. Nolan [07-04-2010 10:22] The earliest days of the voluntary movie ratings system was a hodge-podge of arbitrary attributes to basically avoid government censorship intervention. While that part was successful, the resulting system was, and still is, a mix of original intention, heavily muddled by internal politics, and marketing.
"GP" was originally supposed to be "G" with an added "P" as an advisory suggesting parental guidance (I suppose on paper it looked simple). However, confusion among moviegoers that the letters were supposed to actually supposed to stand for something resulted in the switch to "PG" to stand for "Parental Guidance", easy to remember.
I could do a whole separate subject on the embattled "R" and the rating formerly known as "X".
There are no copyrights or trademarks on the ratings system. In modern times, it's all about marketing. Oh....and censorship.
The last politician I remember threatening government intervention was Janet Reno. Andy [07-04-2010 07:35] I didn't realize John Forsythe was in "Bachelor Father," which is a show I "discovered" and like it enough to try and catch it while it's on. I don't know if they've switched the scheduling around or not, but I used to be able to catch it on TV 32.2 around 8 AM. Hilly [07-04-2010 05:43] YOU were 16th! I'm 17th! Yay! Jason Fetters [07-04-2010 02:31] First!! Petrey [06-04-2010 19:34] I think kids back then were tougher when it came to films being rated PG they could take it. GP was always a queer rating. I used to say "Guidance Parental"? That doesn't make sense, ha ha!
Don't get me started on the PG-13 rating Mike, that bastard rating just wants to pull in more $$ and turned PG films into wimpy watered down training films.
MUSIC and LYRICS had half a girl's ass cheek and got slapped with a PG-13 rating. Must've been a gay MPAA member on board that day.
It's funny you should mention the WOMAN IN RED because when that came out the projectionist would tell us to get our arse into the theatre at the right moment and WE GOT BUSH, WE GOT BUSH, ha ha!
So you pulled a 'Homer' on people waiting in line for Empire? Ha!
Funny enough if I had a gun stuck to my head and had to choose which of the original 3 I 'liked' I'd have to pick EMPIRE because of all the dark themes it had going on. Michael [06-04-2010 15:26] As for ratings, I think the Apes films got away with G because it was mostly Apes being beaten, etc.
M was used from 68-70, replaced by GP up until 72, when PG took over. Of course PG 13 showed up in the mid 80s. "Red Dawn" was the first movie released as PG 13 (I'm curious if they will give the remake a special rating in honor of being the first). Of course, "The Woman in Red" was PG 13 as well but, if the theatre you saw it at did not have the proper screen ratio, the scene where Kelly Lebrock and Gene Wilder are in the bedroom and Lebrock is running around the room, she is totally nude below the waist. And that, boys and girls, is why theatre screens have adjustable masking! Michael [06-04-2010 15:19] I would think that because of the naked backsides and violence (Heston shot in the neck) that the original "Apes" would have warranted a PG. I know in hearing David Brown talk that the MPAA wanted to rate JAWS 'R' but the producers were able to convince the ratings board that no one would dress up like a shark and kill people. "Star Wars" is PG because of Han shooting first (sorry, George, but I remember the truth) and the arm cut off in the cantina. Plus I think the burned skeletons of Uncle Owen and Aunt Buru are pretty PG worthy. Of course, by Episode III, when Anakin killed all of the "younglings," the violence was PG 13 worthy.
Ah, the Andromeda Society. My favorite memory of "Empire" is driving past the sold out line in Orlando in John Hooper's car and, broadcasting on his CB radio's PA "You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll kiss your 3 bucks goodbye. And you won't believe Darth is Lukes father!"
We were such scamps back then. Petrey [06-04-2010 14:48] I distinctly remember seeing the short lived 'GP' rating at the end of BENEATH in 1970 Ed. As for the rest I'm intrigued to sit down later and study the ratings code and the Apes films ratings because I sure don't remember them all. None of them were near an R rating though, that's for sure
One thing I could never understand was the reading of the scrolls and the line that said Beware the beast man.....he kills for sport. Right near the encounter with the apes in the first one they had the humans strung up for sport so that was a f*ckup in my opinion. Petrey [06-04-2010 14:32] So the Mature or 'M' rating started around that same time as well? ED [06-04-2010 14:20] The original rating was unrated. Remember it was the Hayes code prior to the MPAA in 1968 and they were not usually carried on advertising material. The re-rating was probably for one of the many Apes re-releases. I think they were all G though weren't they? Petrey [06-04-2010 14:15] Ed - We're def. on the same page when it comes to the madness of the MPAA back then. What I was actually going by on APES was when it came to syndication on our CBS late night TV showing, believe it or not the theatrical G rating snipe, the blue with the white stripe ran at the end of the film! The language was intact but strangely enough the scene in the church where the monkey preacher starts out with "OH GOD" was completely missing from the film, ha.
After cheating and looking at IMDB it says it was re-rated to the G rating. I wonder what the original rating was. ED [06-04-2010 13:04] Petrey - didn't the original Planet of the Apes skirt the ratings all together? The MPAA code started the same year it was released, 1968, and my original one sheet for the film does not show a rating. Your point is still taken though. For example, Beneath the Planet of the Apes was released as a G in 1970 and it has a lot of violence in it. We all know how fair and even handed the MPAA is in applying their ratings, I was just speculating on why Star Wars would be considered a PG. Petrey [06-04-2010 12:36] I get what you're saying Ed but PLANET OF THE APES received a G rating if I'm not mistaken and we saw bare ass and got to hear Heston cuss out the statue of liberty using God Damn in the Dialogue so.. I don't know. Boggles the mind sometime doesn't it?. ED [06-04-2010 12:27] Petrey - I believe Star Wars received a PG for the violence. It's seems pretty tame today but there were people getting shot, choked, and one limb hack off with a light saber. The MPAA was very liberal in what go a PG rating rather than an R but the G stuff was usually pretty sterile. Petrey [06-04-2010 12:07] This is a year? Nolan [06-04-2010 12:06] Mr. Petrey: Thanks, I made the correction. I was going on memory and I always think of Logan's Run as a 1975 film for whatever reason. I think had a magazine with it on the cover I thought I bought in 1975.
Funny, on the IMDB (which I should've checked first), the first reader who comments also recalls it being a 1975 film!
Umm...wait...what year is this again? Petrey [06-04-2010 11:45] LOGAN'S RUN was in 1976 (Sorry to be nit picky bossman)
I just received a DVD called "THE DEADLY TOWER" with John Forsythe co-starring with Kurt Russell.
I've seen 1976's KING KONG many more times than STAR WARS. Who could resist that ass on Jessica Lange back then? Ahh, once again the PG rating had spoke.
Now my question is why was STAR WARS rated PG in 1977 given everything surrounding it? It could have been easily rated G. ED [06-04-2010 10:33] Jason, you missed one of the major elements of Gamera: Guardian of the Universe. It attempts to give a back story to the giant turtle and one of his most identifiable foes that was missing from the original series. Both Gamera and Gaos were revealed to be the products of genetic egineering done by an advanced civilzation, presumably Atlantis, residing on Earth. Gaos effectively destroyed this civilization and Gamera was their last ditch effort to stop it. Granted this isn't the best back story of all time but at least it does explain how a giant tusked turtle can fly! The special effects scenes are also well done and there are some effective fight sequences. Thankfully they abandoned the token cute kids that always bogged down the original series! ED [06-04-2010 10:01] First baby, yeah! [31-12-1969 16:00]