#56 September 2003

CLUB NEWS
JUST READ ALL OF THE CLUB NEWS
ICS presentation in review.....
August – Film Noir by Troy Farwell

TV NEWS
CHLOE EXPLORES THE DARK SIDE 
STILL LIFE STILL ALIVE… 
AND MORE DAVID KEITH…IT’S A DEEP SHOCK 
BORG TREK TO VEGAS 
NEW DYNAMIC DUO -ANGEL AND SPIKE

EVENT NEWS
The 29th Annual World Fantasy Con,  Capclave 2002, Chiller Theatre 13th Anniv. Halloween Extravaganza, Darkover Grand Council XXV, PhilCon 2003, Evecon 20

LITERARY NEWS
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BRADBURY 
HORRORS! KING WRITES AGAIN! 
FANTASY NOMINEES NAMED 
LOCAL AUTHOR- A COMPANION FOR ANY MYSTERY

MOVIE NEWS
PUNISHER MEETS THE PRESS 
HAMMER RISING TO CREATE AGAIN 
DRACULA SETS SAIL 
DOGS, ALIENS – Hmmm…
PRAXTON & KINGSLEY ARE GO! 
 

MOVIE NEWS
HOBBIT DOING THE HAPPY DANCE! 
UNDERWORLD – VAMPIRES ?
LET THE WOOKIE WIN!  (IN EPISODE III) 
NEW PETER PAN A BIT DIFFERENT

ACTION FIGURE NEWS
COLLECTIBLES CORNER

MUST SEE MOVIES 
THE ORDER, CABIN FEVER, UNDERWORLD, COLD CREEK MANOR’HYPNOTIC, BUBBA HO – TEP, THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD, TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE. SCARY MOVIE 3, ALIEN

DVD NEWS
ANIME DVD RELEASES

INTERNET NEWS
Digital Video Essentials Disc
Something for nuthin'???
Internet Video Magazine
MediaChannel.com

FAREWELLS
Brianne Murphy, Charles Bronson

THE LAST "WARD"

ICS CALENDER

TAKE THIS PAGE, PRINT IT 
THEN POST IT ON THE FRIDGE!!!


 
Editor-Betsy Childs, 
Staff Writers- Regina Vallerani,Tim Fleming, Taylor Sherblom Woodward, Mike Laird, Jeanne Matcovich, Gary Roberson, Charles Wittig, Joe Plempel, John Ward
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AUGUST MEETING PART 1 – SAFETY IN THE DARKNESS 
  Troy Farwell gave a presentation on the shadowy world Film Noir and showed clips from several films including DETOUR, DOUBLE INDEMNITY and KISS ME DEADLY.  Some elements of Film Noir are cynicism, betrayal, passion, moral ambiguity, and downbeat endings as well as the ubiquitous low key lighting and femmes fatale. While each of us may have had our own ideas of what constituted Film Noir going into the meeting, Troy’s eye-opening speech and great collection of DVD’s and books gave us all a fresh view of the genre.  Thanks for an enjoyable evening, Troy! 

AUGUST MEETING PART 2 – BUILD MY GALLOWS HIGH, BABY 
    It’s one thing to simply enjoy a film; it’s quite another to watch a film knowing about the genre’s history and background.  It takes film appreciation to an entirely different level.  Troy’s earlier presentation just whetted our appetites for a great Film Noir flick – and we viewed what is known as the ultimate Film Noir – OUT OF THE PAST – directed by Jacques Tourneur and starring Robert Mitchum. 

AUGUST MEETING PART 3 – PAYING ATTENTION? 
    To supplement his presentation, Troy brought in a few soundtrack CD’s and distributed them to winners who could answer trivia questions from the evening’s lecture.  Winners were John Clayton, Gary Roberson, John Ward and our 2 visitors from Shore Leave, Leslie and Denise.  Congrats to all! 

AUGUST MEETING PART 4 – BIRTHDAY BOYS 
    Happy Birthday to the Tom’s – Tom Knoll and Tom Woodward.  We had a cake and rousing rendition of Happy Birthday for them. 

AUGUST MEETING PART 5 – LATE NIGHT WITH GODZILLA 
    After our business meeting ended, several members stayed to watch GOJIRA X MECHAGOJIRA – a 2002 feature where the military takes the DNA from the 1954 Godzilla skeleton and creates a new, bio-mechanical Mechagojira (otherwise known as Three-Way Triyu – where’s Tim Fleming when you need him?) to battle the 2002 Godzilla.  So, who won?  I’m not telling, but this marks the first time I’ve seen a Japanese Prime Minister say ‘Let’s kick some ass’.  Thanks to Gary Roberson for bringing in this newest installment of the Godzilla saga. 

JOE OF ALL TRADES 
    Let’s hear it for Joe Plempel!  Joe, along with the board, did a lot of research and leg work to purchase our new DVD player.  The old player quit working after FANEX.  Although the DVD player had not been excessively by our club over the past 2 years, it had been moved around a lot and operated almost non-stop at FANEX.   Joe, we all appreciate your work as keeper of the a/v equipment and once again, thanks to you and the board members who made the transition between DVD players seem seamless! 

PASS THE HAT 
    Sue Feder is a survivor of non-Hodgkins lymphoma.  She actually joined the club back in 2000 and was absent from the club temporarily while she received treatment.  Every year she asks for donations to support research for the disease.  Once again,  ICS came through with a generous donation - $54 at the July meeting and $49 at the August meeting.  Thanks to all who supported Sue’s cause – she’s one She-Demon we are all glad to have around! 

THE CELLULOID ANNIVERSARY 
  What’s the traditional 5th year anniversary gift?  In our case, it’s a night shared with friends at the Senator Theater.  ICS is renting out the balcony on January 24, 2004.  Admission is $10 and is limited to 40 members – turn in your money to Regina.  The reservations are held when the payment is received.   So far, the attendance list is: John Clayton, Dava Sentz, Dave Willard, Charlie Wittig, Joe Plempel, Dave Henderson and Regina Vallerani. 

I’M READY FOR MY CLOSEUP, MR. DEMILLE 
  Also, in honor of our 5th anniversary, Barry Murphy is video taping 20-30 second testimonials and anniversary messages from our members during the next meeting.  If interested, please see Barry at the next meeting.  Also, if anyone has any pictures or videos from previous meetings or VHS tapes of films we’ve viewed, please allow Barry to borrow them.  When he is finished with his project, we should have a fun little tape to watch at the January 2004 meeting. 

NEWS OF OUR NEXT MEETING: THE BASICS 
  Our next meeting will be held on Saturday September 27rd at 5:30 P.M. at the church hall behind the Perry Hall Presbyterian Church located at 8848 BelAir Road. Take Baltimore Beltway exit 32 north on Belair Road. Turn left onto Joppa Road. Immediately past the miniature golf course turn left into the parking lot. If you miss it there are ample turn-around opportunities. If you get stuck call 443-570-6455. That's Dave Willard’s cell phone. He'll talk you in. 

OUR SEPTEMBER MEETING: THAT’S NOT BOND, JAMES BOND 
  Gary Roberson is going to thrill us with a presentation and films of James Bond wannabees such as Matt Helm and Derek Flint.  It should be fun to see how other films adopted the James Bond spy movie formula and conventions. 

UPCOMING – LON CHANEYPHANTOM OF THE OPERA 
  Courtney Spies brought in flyers of newly restored Lon Chaney classics, including a version of PHANTOM OF THE OPERA with restored dialogue.  We’re hoping to show this release as a double feature at the next meeting.  Stay tuned for more details.  It sounds like a treat for all classic film fans. 
 
 
 

OCTOBER POTLUCK 
  The October meeting is our annual Halloween Potluck.  We are asking members to bring in a favorite dish or Halloween dish.  If cooking is not your thing, consider bringing sodas, ice or chips. 

Here is our current menu: 
 
 

APPETIZERS 
Cheese and crackers – Gary 
Sushi – The Vaughts 
Hot Chicken Wings – Skip P. 
MAIN COURSE 
Greek Meatballs in Crockpot – Betsy & Jim 
Spaghetti W/ Meat Sauce – Sue Feder 
Peppers and Sausage with Sauce – Peggy 
Hot Dog Extravaganza – Charlie 
Bucket o’ Chicken – Count Yorga
SALADS 
Pasta Salad – Mike Laird 
Cole Slaw – Tom 
DESSERTS 
Daifuku, Odango Asst (Japanese Desserts) – Blake 
Ice Cream – Troy 
Cookies and Cake – Rick & Suzanne 
DRINKS 
Soda (Diet, Regular) – John Ward 
Bottled Water – Diane Gervasio 
Coke – John Clayton

 GOING ONCE!  GOING TWICE!  SOLD! 
  The Masked Auctioneer and The Minimum Bid Kid are making an appearance at the November meeting… and that can only mean one thing – we’re having an auction!  The club is auctioning off several films and miscellaneous goods that did not sell at the Fanex dealer’s table.  We are also accepting auction goods – so clean our closets and prepare to spend and laugh at the antics of our resident auctioneers.  The auction will begin at 5:00 on November 22. 

2004 – CALENDAR UPDATE 
  The theme for the 2004 calendar is TV Shows of the 60’s and should be available at the October meeting.  The calendar is $15 – if you want one, please leave your name with Regina.  Pre-payments are accepted or payment can be made later when the calendars arrive. 

2004 – SPECIAL GUESTS! 
 Local filmmaker Mark Redfield has agreed to do a talk and film at the June 2004 meeting.  Mr. Redfield has shown several films at FANEX including a version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  He is very excited to be speaking to an audience of film fans, so let’s hope his schedule is still open for us that far in advance. 
 And as mentioned in the last issue, respected author, Greg Mank, will visit during the April 2004 meeting.  Mr. Mank has interviewed many great stars and has lots of interesting anecdotes.  More details will follow as the date gets closer. 

Presentation for August – Film Noir: by Troy Farwell

   Troy Farwell was our presentation and film theme for August and he did a wonderful presentation on a classic and often overlooked film style.  The Film Noir.  He gaves us some examples via a great mix of film clips and his talk.  ICS Files asked him to share the basics with us.  He was good enough to send this: 
 

   Film Noir seems to be an observation of the French concerning American films of the forties that contain a heavy German influence and style.  The term was coined by French critics upon seeing a glut of American films after the German occupation of WWII. 
   Between Mid July to the end of August 1946 they saw 5 films: MALTESE FALCON, LAURA, MURDER MY SWEET, DOUBLE INDEMNITY, WOMAN IN THE WINDOW.  A few months later they saw THIS GUN FOR HIRE, THE KILLERS, LADY IN THE LAKE, GILDA and THE BIG SLEEP. 
   The critics noticed similar themes, attitudes and style in these films, dubbing them “Film Noir”, meaning black (or dark) film.  This reference was much like the reference they used for the dark fiction released in the forties under a series of books titled “Series Noir” referring to their dark pessimistic undertones.  Many of these novels from the likes of Cornell Woolrich, David Goodis, James M. Cain and others were later adapted to film, themselves becoming Film Noir. 
   Film Noir generally refers to these dark films made mostly from 1944 to 1955 with a dark, somber, pessimistic or cynical attitude and a very stylish visual sense.  It tends to exaggerate lighting and shadows along with unusual angles or framing devices to create a disturbing feeling for the audience.  Many Noir heroes are either private eyes with a conscience or a good cop in a bad world, trying to make a difference.  Some also deal with criminals in a sympathetic way or an average everyman just trying to get ahead in life.  Virtually all deal with death and despair.  Noir characters are lucky to get through the film alive and all seem affected by the environment of the city and the corruption that hides within it. 
   Back in 1955, two French critics, Borde and Chameton, wrote the first book-length study of this cycle of films.  This cornerstone study,  Panorama du Film Noir Amercain: 1941-1953  is the book that really started it all.  This study broke down the idea of Film Noir, it’s influences and what made these films have an unusual similarity in style and attitude. 

This study noticed key things about the history of film leading up to Noir: 
       Public tired of comedies and melodramas 
 War brings the propaganda film and newsreels 
 Realism of greater importance in cinema 
 Noir is a Synthesis of 3 kinds of 30’s films: Gangster (Warner Bros), Horror (Universal), Detectives (Fox and MGM) 
 Hard-boiled fiction: Hammett and Chandler 

   Also noted is the advent of Noir in 1941 with films like MALTESE FALCON but then noir is rare due to the war.  A positive patriotic attitude doesn’t sit well with noir’s anti-social pessimistic nature so noir is delayed due to the war and the advent of the war picture.  However, a psychological element of noir seems to emerge from the ambiguity and ambivalence of psychological dramas like SUSPICION, KINGS ROW and DR. JEKYLL AND MR HYDE (1941). 
   Many noir studies seem to use 1941 as the beginning of noir due to FALCON and, more likely, CITIZEN KANE, which seems a major influence in my opinion.  While I wouldn’t coin KANE noir, it’s use of narrative, flashback and strong visual style appears in many strong noirs. 
   Noir is a very mysterious and unusual period of film.  Dates referring to it’s beginning and demise vary.  And some films have stronger noir elements than others, making some films more “noir” than others, depending on your opinion.  Some critics don’t even think of it as a cycle or movement but an invention of French critics, despite the similar characteristics.  The characters and situations tend to formula but still there are cunning surprises and dramatic emotions. 
   Dates referring to noir’s beginning and ending seem to change depending on the study. I like to think of its time frame as a nebulous cloud with ground zero being around 1946 to 1948, the strongest noir years.  Strong noir seems to appear from 1944 to 1955 with influences of noir coming before 1944 and stragglers still being made after the cycle ends post 1955.  Then you see some noir influences finding their way to TV by 1959 with show like PETER GUNN, NAKED CITY and UNTOUCHABLES. 
   Noir seems to have many cycles within itself.  You have good detectives and bad cops. You have good cops and bad detectives.  Bad Criminals against even worse criminals.  Good girls and some very bad girls.  And the bad girls are more fun and cause more trouble.  But the good girls can redeem the worst sucker in a pinch. 
   There are films that have odd angles and dark shadows with surrealistic sequences.  Still others with a realistic, almost documentary feeling with on location shooting in the big city.  There are boxing noirs with realism and others with dramatic ultra-realism.  And yet all these films seem to have a similar psychological feeling to them despite some contradicting styles. 
   In 1972 Paul Schrader published his “Notes on Film Noir” in Film Comment.  It was the first analysis on noir for many American readers and I think he really helped summarize the influences and establish the elements of what makes a Film Noir, Noir.  I especially like his way of putting noir’s psychological attitude  “a passion for the past & present but also a fear of the future”. 
   He also refers to conditions and influences for the advent of noir films: 
  War and Post War Disillusionment: the attitude of the country during and after the war 
  Post War Realism: use of newsreels and advance of film equipment for more location filming 
  German Influence: German emigres and the use of expressionism i.e. “Universal Horror films” 
                     Directors: like Fritz Lang, Robert Siodmak, Billy Wilder, Otto Preminger 
  Hard Boiled Tradition: popular fiction of Hammett & Chandler and noir fiction of Cain, Woolrich & Goodis.  Many of these books were made into films. 

Sometimes noir essays see way more in a film than what I feel is actually there.  I’ve been collecting books on noir for years but after awhile there just wasn’t anything else to be said about noir and it’s attitude and style, in my opinion.  They either repeated the previous books or invented things to just sell more books. 
So I just sought out suggested films that seemed to fit the mold and either agreed or disagreed.  Like so many film buffs, I proceeded to hunt down and find that elusive film I hadn’t seen.  And just when I thought I’d pretty much seen all the hard and heavy noirs of the period, along comes NIGHT AND THE CITY.  This baby is as hard and heavy as the best noirs and showed how much a major player director Jules Dassin is to the world of Noir.  So there are gems out there in those noir hills. And I’m still looking….. 
   As I mentioned before, noir is an unusual cycle of films.  There’s an even odder sub-cycle I like to call Odd Noirs.  These films tend to deviate into other genres while still retaining much of their “noirishness. There are the unusual noir horror films of Val Lewton like CAT PEOPLE, SEVENTH VICTIM or LEOPARD MAN.  They have a dark atmosphere and noir style but with a unique subdued attitude toward horror.  While most think of classic noir as black and white photography, there are several films in color that are often mentioned in noir history: LEAVE HER TO HEAVEN with Gene Tierney as a woman so obsessed with her husband that she’ll kill his handicapped little brother out of jealousy.  Then there’s the Phillip Marlowe vehicle LADY IN THE LAKE directed by actor Robert Montgomery.  Seems this experimental noir used the gimmick of filming the entire movie in first person perspective.  So all the actors look and talk into the camera as if the audience is “Marlowe”.  The only time you see Marlowe is when he looks into a mirror.  And he looks like, you guessed it, Robert Montgomery. 

   I hope this helps explain and generate interest in classic film noir because I’ve found it a very fun and intriguing cycle.  Whether reading the fiction, watching and hunting down the films or reading the occasional essay, I find the whole Noir experience a thrilling world of contradictions: fun and sad, humorous and scary, realistic and surreal, sexy and sadistic.  Some films are slow and somber and some are fast and violent.  That’s what I love about the films and the characters. 
   You just don’t know whom to trust or what you’ll get.  I wouldn’t recommend a steady stream of it for anyone taking Prozac but if you like dark and sinister crime films with a bit of style, it’s definitely worth checking out.  Often I’ve been asked what my all-time favorite noir film is and like potato chips, I can’t just pick one.  There are so many violent, dramatic and beautiful films in this cycle that I couldn’t just settle on one particular movie.  Maybe it’s because I like the whole style of the cycle that they all tend to be elements of one big world. 
   The following are some personal favorites that should keep you coming back for more and some suggested books. 

Some Great Noir films: 

ACE IN THE  HOLE (1951 aka The Big Carnival) 
 This cynical look at journalism is brutal noir from legendary director Billy Wilder and a great performance by Kirk Douglas. 
NIGHT AND THE CITY (1950) 
 Richard Widmarks best noir IMO. He’s such a scummy low-life you just gotta love him, especially when he gets it. 
OUT OF THE PAST (1947) 
 This has all of the key noir elements. Slow but stylish I really like the dialogue, pacing and Mitchum and Greer. 
CHAMPION (1949) 
 Egotistical boxer Kirk Douglas gets sucker punched by a slick dame in this boxing noir. 
NIGHTMARE ALLEY (1947) 
 How does a con man Tyrone Power become a sick sideshow geek? Check out this dark noir to find out. 
THE KILLERS (1946) and CRISS CROSS ( 1949) 
Two excellent films of betrayal by classic noir director Robert Siodmak, both with Burt Lancaster 

Suggested Reading: 
Panorama of Am Film Noir (1941-53)-Borde/Chaumeton (City Lights Books), 
 Like I said, this one started it all and is the cornerstone study about Film Noir, now finally in English 
Film Noir: Encyclopedic Reference 3rd Edition-Silver/Ward (Overlook Press) 
 This is the ultimate reference guide for noir films. If you need the plot for it or info about it, this book is it! 
Film Noir Readers 1,2 & 3-Silver/Ursinido (Limelight Editions) 
 Alain Silver knows his noir and has edited this wonderful series of essays and interviews about film noir 
Authors: Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Cornell Woolrich, David Goodis, James M. Cain, James Ellroy (modern noir) 
Noir fiction can get even heavier than the films. Read them sparingly. Woolrich and Goodis are hard to find but worth it. Hammett and Chandler are available in nice editions from Library of America. Ellroy is dark modern noir easy to find. 

Hope you enjoyed my take on film noir and feel free to talk noir with me anytime: Spacefan@comcast.net

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CHLOE EXPLORES THE DARK SIDE 
   Her character, tyro journalist Chloe Sullivan, is no longer the innocent, spunky and naive girl who thought she knew everything, but really knew nothing said SMALLVILLE co-star Allison Mac.  "As the years have gone on, we've really seen her grow and develop and change," Mack said. "She's become a woman and realized her strengths and her weaknesses.  I think she's gotten a lot more guarded, and she's a lot less open to rejection from the people around her.  She's been thrown into a horrible situation, and she's been forced to grow up in a lot of ways.  So I think that she's matured as a woman." 
   During season two, Chloe took a bit of a back seat to Clark (Tom Welling) and Lana (Kristin Kreuk), as they explored their burgeoning romantic relationship, and to Pete (Sam Jones III), as he learned of Clark's super secret.  In the upcoming season, Mack revealed, Chloe will step to the fore and toward the dark side. 
   "I think, as you saw last season, that she was screwed over one too many times," Mack said.  "Now she has to make the decision 'Am I the most important person in my life or are my friends?'  That's a tough question.  It's good.  It's very tantalizing, the dark side, and it's very interesting to her.  Lionel Luthor [John Glover] makes it sound even more tantalizing.  So she definitely plays with it and touches it, and I think that Chloe definitely has it in her to go that way."  Season three of Smallville will take flight Oct. 1 with "Exile," part one of a two-part opener that will conclude the following week with "Phoenix." 

STILL LIFE STILL ALIVE… 
   David Keith, who co-stars in the upcoming Fox TV series STILL LIFE, said that the show is a family drama seen through the eyes of the family's dead oldest son. "Jake was the only one who really got along with everybody, and now we're each left to our own devices as a family without him," Keith said. 
   Bryce Johnson stars as Jake Morgan, who was shot and killed on his first day on the job as a police officer and chose to remain in the Morgan house as a spirit. 
   Keith (Daredevil) plays Ben, the Morgan family patriarch.  "Ben is the quiet, strong type, the rock that the family leans on during the storm, yet he is shaken by the fact that he was probably the only one who was secretly happy when the older son decided to become a cop like his old man, and not a lawyer," Keith said.  "He probably enjoyed that, and now he feels the most guilty." 
   Former Buffy the Vampire Slayer writer/producer Marti Noxon is among the show's executive producers.  But Keith said that he doesn't consider Still Life a genre show. "There really aren't any supernatural overtones to it," he said. "Jake is the narrator. 
   There's one situation where you hear Jake's spirit say he wished he'd locked a window, and the next time his sister tries to open it, it's stuck.  But that's as close to supernatural as STILL LIFE  gets."  STILL LIFE is in production now as a midseason replacement. 

AND MORE DAVID KEITH…IT’S A DEEP SHOCK 
   David Keith—who stars in the SCI FI Channel original picture DEEP SHOCK—says the film is a straightforward SF action adventure.  "It's leaning to the right and leaning to the left as the ship shakes," Keith said. "And God knows what's coming out of the crevices of the bowels of the Earth." 
   Keith (Daredevil and the upcoming Fox TV series STILL LIFE) plays Navy Capt. Andy Raines, who joins an effort to avert disaster when the United Nations considers nuking a trench deep beneath the North Pole that serves as home to electric-eel aliens. DEEP SHOCK also stars Simmone Jade MacKinnon, Sean Whalen and Mark Sheppard (Firefly). 
   Raines spends a good deal of time dealing with the electric eels, aka Electrophorous electricus, but Keith admitted that he can't make the same claim.  "The eels were all CGI," he said. "I haven't seen one yet. I have no idea what they look like." 

BORG TREK TO VEGAS 
   A new Borg-themed 3-D attraction will open at the Las Vegas Hilton's Star Trek Experience in the gambling capital in spring 2004.  Paramount Parks announced the new Borg Invasion 4D ride on Aug. 1. 
   The immersive entertainment will feature stars from Star Trek: Voyager and Star Trek: First Contact, as well as sensory effects choreographed with a 3-D film, including "atmospheric and hydraulic effects, physical probes, pneumatic actuators and an array of audio transducers," the site reported. 
   The Star Trek Experience will remain open during construction of the new Borg attraction. 

NEW DYNAMIC DUO -ANGEL AND SPIKE 
   On the Hollywood set of WB's ANGEL, the brooding, do-gooder title character, played by David Boreanaz, is sitting in his office, lost in thought.  He glances up at Wesley, one of his crime-busting partners, and asks, "You don't think he's really gone, do you?"  Within moments, his question is answered: Spike, the trash-talking, platinum-blond vampire, comes striding in, clad in his trademark leather trench coat. 
   For a guy who was last seen going up in flames on the series finale of BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, he looks remarkably unsinged. The actor behind Spike, James Marsters, is obviously thrilled by his resurrection. "With the writers we had on BUFFY, I felt like we could have gone at least two more years," he says during a break. BUFFY and ANGEL creator Joss Whedon first approached the 41-year-old actor last winter about transplanting his 123-year-old character to ANGEL.  Marsters jumped at the chance. "I have never felt bored doing this character. I don't know when I will be able to do something this delightful again, so why bid it goodbye before you have to?" 
   Spike's encore will be tied to the amulet that played a key role in BUFFY’S finale. "He's not just going to walk in and go, 'You wouldn't believe what just happened to me.  I dreamt that I was burnt to a crisp,'" Whedon says.  "We're going to bring him back in the most painful and confusing way for him possible."  Along the way, don’t be surprised if you catch a glimpse of Buffy there either.

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The 29th Annual World Fantasy Convention 
October 30th — November 2nd, 2003 
Celebrating 75 years of Writing 
http://www.seahunt.org/wfc/
Author Guests of Honor 
Brian Lumley and Jack Williamson 
To Register: http://www.seahunt.org/wfc/membership.htm 

Intercon XVII  LARP Baltimore, MD -- October 4 - 6, 2002 

Barrage VII   Miniatures  Baltimore, MD -- October 5, 2002 

Tempest in a Teapot IV  Email: Stephen Mauris
Where: Silver Spring, Maryland USA 
Dates: October 11, 2003 - October 13, 2003 
Location: Silver Spring Hilton 
Diplomacy Convention. Wargaming  Baltimore, MD 

Capclave 2003   SF  Washington, DC, MD -- November 21-23, 2003  email: wsfa@KeithLynch.net

CHILLER THEATRE EXPO October 31 thru November 2 
Held in Rutherford NJ, you can find here three days of Horror Movies, great guests and Dealers Room Galore!  Check the site out for the phenomenal guest list.  What a great place to spend Halloween!!!! 
Guest List Click Here

2003 DARKOVER GRAND COUNCIL MEETING XXVI
NOVEMBER 28 - 30, 2003 
TIMONIUM, MARYLAND 

PhilCon 2003
December 12--14, 2003  Marriott Center City Philadelphia 
Principal Speaker: Jack McDevitt 
Artist Guests Of Honor: Greg & Tim Hildebrandt 
Special Guests: Peter David & Harry Harrison

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BRADBURY 
   The Planetary Society was asking fans of legendary SF author Ray Bradbury to send greetings from around the world to the writer on the occasion of his 83rd birthday, Aug. 22.  The Planetary Society was collecting names and birthday greetings through Aug. 20. 
   The society presented what it hopes is "the world's largest birthday card" to Bradbury, one of the society's advisory council members.  The society says that Bradbury, author of such books as The Martian Chronicles, "has contributed so much to the world of science fiction." 

HORRORS! KING WRITES AGAIN! 
   Horrormeister Stephen King is writing a column in Entertainment Weekly magazine, the first time he has written a regular column since his university days in the 1960s.  King will pen a monthly piece called "The Pop of King," which debuted in the Aug. 8 issue, the wire service reported. 
   King will offer his opinions on books, movies, television, music and more.  In the introduction to his first column, the 55-year-old novelist writes that he reviewed Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix for the magazine a few months ago, and editors came back to him because they either liked the review or the fact that it was written in longhand. 
   King also writes that he loved the third TERMINATOR movie ("Arnold is still the perfect machine," he says) and he goes on to slam Celine Dion. 

FANTASY NOMINEES NAMED 
   Nominations have been announced for this year's World Fantasy Awards, for works published in 2002.  The winners will be named on Nov. 2 at the World Fantasy Convention 2003 in Washington.  A life achievement award, whose nominees are not released in advance, will also be announced at the convention.  The following is a partial list of nominees: 

Novel 
•The Facts of Life by Graham Joyce 
•Fitcher's Brides by Gregory Frost 
•Ombria in Shadow by Patricia A. McKillip 
•The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque by Jeffrey Ford 
•The Scar by China Miéville 

Novella 
•"Coraline" by Neil Gaiman 
•"The Least Trumps" by Elizabeth Hand 
•"The Library" by Zoran Zivkovic 
•"Seven Wild Sisters" by Charles de Lint 
•"A Year in the Linear City" by Paul Di Filippo 

Anthology 
•The American Fantasy Tradition, Brian M. Thomsen, ed. 
•Conjunctions 39: The New Wave Fabulists, Peter Straub, ed. 
•The Green Man: Tales from the Mythic Forest, Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, eds. 
•Leviathan 3, Jeff VanderMeer and Forrest Aguirre, eds. 
•The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror: Fifteenth Annual Collection, Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling, eds. 
•Gary Turner & Marty Halpern (for Golden Gryphon Press) 

LOCAL AUTHOR- A COMPANION FOR ANY MYSTERY 
   The author happens to be a member of ICS –our own MARTIN GRAMS but being self-published, this book won't be available on bookshelves as easily as other books.  Martin took a moment to share this information with us.  With lots of us being horror fans, he figured we would enjoy knowing about this one.  Thanks Martin! 

THE I LOVE A MYSTERY COMPANION 
by Martin Grams, Jr. (author of the recent The Alfred Hitchcock Presents) 
with a foreward by Jim Harmon (author of The Great Radio Heroes) 

   Longing only for action, adventure and excitement wherever it would lead them, three men fought through vampire-infested jungles, ghost towns of wind-swept Nevada, and solved mysteries involving werewolves, defeated mad scientists hell-bent on world domination, fought gruesome flying reptiles and modern-day pirates seeking treasure in every shape and form.  Jack, Packard, Doc Long and Reggie York were those three musketeers and for more than a decade I LOVE A MYSTERY ruled the radio airwaves. 
   Considered the greatest horror radio thriller ever broadcast, this program has literally become a cult classic.  Regrettably, preservation methods were not applied over the last few decades and less than 100 of the 1,700+ episodes are known to exist in recorded form. 
   Finally after all these decades, the complete production history and episode guide, 500 pages of information, is now available under one cover and officially authorized through the estate of Carlton E. Morse. 

Release date - October 15. 
Retail price of the book is $30.00. 
Postage is $5.00 for the first book and $2.00 per additional copy. 
Available via - I Love a Mystery Book, P.O. Box 189, Delta, PA   1731 

If any ICS members would like to share their view on a recent book that they’ve read – fiction or non-fiction, please email it  attn betsy at ICSBETSPOTS@aol.com.

We are a cinema club, but many movies we watch were started in book form with our own imaginations creating the images that come to life in the films we love.
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PUNISHER MEETS THE PRESS 
   Jonathan Hensleigh, writer and director of the upcoming film adaptation of Marvel's Punisher comic series, says the movie will be "an intense urban drama, and it's violent.". 
   "It's a story of revenge and redemption," Hensleigh said.  Lead actor Thomas Jane joined Hensleigh and Marvel Studios executive Ari Arad, producer Gale Anne Hurd and others at a press conference to celebrate the start of production. 
   Hensleigh also discussed how much of the comic series' source material has made its way into the script.  "Some years after [the Punisher] line of comics started, they did this little insert series called 'Year One' that was at the end of '94 and beginning of '95," Hensleigh said. "There were a whole number of elements [used from] there.  Then, specifically, [writer] Garth Ennis supercharged the series in recent years, starting with a series called 'Welcome Back Frank.'  It was a bound book Marvel had sent to me.  I read it in about 45 minutes and called Avi Arad within a half an hour and commited to the project." 
   For his part, Jane said that both he and Hensleigh were "really influenced" by artist Tim Bradstreet's covers for The Punisher, to which Hensleigh responded, "Thomas is dead right.  There was a visual stamp that Bradstreet put on it that was electrifying." 

HAMMER RISING TO CREATE AGAIN 
   The resurrected British horror-film company Hammer Films and Australia's Pictures in Paradise announced plans to develop and produce up to six low-budget scary films over the next five years.  All will be co-productions taking advantage of tax incentives and subsidies in both countries, and the majority will be shot in Oz, PIP's Chris Brown said. 
   "We have been developing a couple of [potential] projects, but we're starting with a clean slate," said Brown. 

HERES ONE FOR HENDO - DRACULA SETS SAIL 
   Phoenix Pictures has signed Robert Schwentke to direct THE LAST VOYAGE OF THE DEMETER, which he will rewrite with Mitch Brian, Variety reported.  Based on the original screenplay by Bragi Schut, Demeter expands upon the captain's log chapter of Bram Stoker's Dracula, in which a ship carried the vampire's coffin to England from Transylvania and arrived at port with no survivors aboard. 
Phoenix will produce, with J.C Spink and Chris Bender of Benderspink acting as executive producers. 

DOGS, ALIENS – COULD BE ONE AND THE SAME 
   Donald Faison, who provides the voice for an alien canine in the upcoming movie GOOD BOY!, has said that the movie offers up a fantasy backstory for dogs.  "It's about dogs' coming from outer space a long time ago to take over the world, and somewhere along the line, they messed up real bad," Faison (TV's Scrubs) said in an interview.  "I think some dude said, 'Sit,' and the dog [sat]. Ever since then, they were considered man's best friend." 
   Faison's character is Wilson, "a boxer who's very loud and loves cookies," he said. "He has two dads.  He doesn't have a mom, but he has two dads." 
   The film combines live action with computer-generated animation to make the dogs speak.  Faison said that the movie differs from 2001's similarly themed CATS & DOGS. "That was really exaggerated mouth movement," he said. "Not this.  It still looks like the dog is saying something, but a dog can't go, 'You.'  It's not possible with their jaw structure."  GOOD BOY!, directed by John Robert Hoffman, opens Oct. 10. 

PRAXTON & KINGSLEY ARE GO! 
   Ben Kingsley—who plays the villainous Hood in the upcoming THUNDERBIRDS the movie adaptation of the '60s TV show, says it warrants first-rate talent.  "We've making a film of quality," Kingsley said at a press conference during production at Pinewood Studios near London.  "So it's not an out-of-kilter thought to bring the best possible cast together to tell this pure story of the struggle for a boy's soul, and to present this tale to children in the brightest, clearest and most fantastic way possible." 
 Bill Paxton—who portrays Jeff Tracy, the patriarch of the Tracy family International Rescue team says the series is much more than a live-action makeover. "I think this is ultimately going to become this kind of great, quintessential British import to the world," 
   Kingsley plays a villain who wants to undermine the Tracy family International Rescue team by infiltrating their island home to steal their high-tech rescue vehicles, the Thunderbirds.  The task of saving the family and the Thunderbirds falls to the youngest son, Alan Tracy, played by Brady Corbet. 
 The TV series, which used a puppetry technique called "supermarionation," has garnered worldwide cult status. The series and the feature film tell the story of Tracy and his five sons, who rely on the Thunderbirds, a fleet of high-tech rescue vehicles, to respond to calls for help around the globe. 
   "I think we're dealing very much with the rite of passage of a 14-year-old boy, who is damned and blessed with heroic parents, one of whom is dead, and one of whom is a world hero," Kingsley said. "It's pure, mythological, rich stuff." 
   Paxton also added "It's going to celebrate the style, the charm, of England in the '60s—but it's not your parents' Thunderbirds." 
   Kingsley added that his own family influenced his decision to join the THUNDERBIRDS cast.  "I have three sons," he said. "My 14-year-old son, I said to him, 'I have been offered the role of Hood in THUNDERBIRDS,' and he said, 'Dad, you're going to have to do it.'  He has a Thunderbirds alarm clock." 
   Kingsley described the countdown that is instantly recognized by the Thunderbirds fans. "When the alarm goes off, it's 'Five, four, three, two, one ... .'" Thunderbirds are "go"! 
   The TV series, which used a puppetry technique called "supermarionation," has garnered worldwide cult status. The series and the feature film tell the story of Tracy and his five sons, who rely on the Thunderbirds, a fleet of high-tech rescue vehicles, to respond to calls for help around the globe. 
   Although updated for today's audiences, the film sill carries a 1960s influence, Paxton said. "I think it would be a complete fiasco if you try to go out for an Austin Powers kind of thing," he said. "It's more than that. When I grew up in the '60s, it was about vocation. It wasn't about making money. It was about doing things for other people, finding something you wanted to do. There's a message of integrity and ethics all through this thing. It celebrates technology as benefiting mankind, using these machines to try to actually help people, instead of decimating them. I feel that's what's going to make it great: It goes beyond this campy '60s puppet show." The film, directed by Jonathan Frakes, is slated for a summer 2004 release. 

HOBBIT DOING THE HAPPY DANCE! 
   Sean Astin—who plays Sam in the upcoming third LOTR film, THE RETURN OF THE KING said that that his climactic scenes with co-star Elijah Wood (Frodo) were intensely satisfying as an actor. 
   "I'd say the most sacred acting experience I ever had was at the top of Mt. Ruepahu, with Elijah Wood in my arms," Astin said, referring to the New Zealand volcano that doubled as J.R.R. Tolkien's Mt. Doom.  "It wasn't acting anymore.  It was one of the most moving [experiences]. [Director] Peter [Jackson] was just sobbing." 
   Astin added, "I just remember this floodgate of emotion came through in the performance at that moment, when we did the scene.   And Peter was crying, and I was crying.  And afterwards, I was running around in the parking lot ... on this active volcano, like, yelling and cheering and like so excited. I was so, like, I had done it. I had nailed it.  I had reached a point as an actor of emotional openness that I had hithertofore never been able to achieve.  And that felt wonderful.  So I'm so proud." 
   Astin said that he and Wood were helped by the "poetry" of the script. "My little brother [Mackenzie] is an actor, too," Astin said. "When we were on the train yesterday, they're like, 'So, what do you do?'  And he's like, 'I'm an emotional engineer. ' So I felt like I got my Ph.D. as an emotional engineer on Return of the King. 

UNDERWORLD – WEREWOLVES, VAMPIRES AND SUCH…. 
   Wiseman, director of the upcoming supernatural movie UNDERWORLD said the movie started out as a straight werewolf project.  "I got together with a friend of mine, Kevin [Grevioux], and we started just hashing out these ideas of what could we do that's new," Wiseman said.  "We didn't want it to be just the local sheriff in a small town goes around the woods, finds these killings and this and that, and the silver bullets and all that . So we just wanted something to feel different." 
   Wiseman, Grevioux and writer Danny McBride devised a scenario in which vampires and werewolves clash.  "We actually gave the werewolves an equal enemy," said Wiseman, a music-video helmer who makes his feature-directorial debut with Underworld.  "It's funny, because a lot of the talk has been that it seems like a very simple concept, and why hasn't this been done before? ... We thought, 'Well, that's great, but it's been done.  Of course it's been done.'  And we talked to our agents, we went on the Internet, we looked at everything.  And outside of, like, the ... late '50s or something, it just hasn't been done.  It was kind of shocking to us." 
   But Wiseman was reluctant at first to characterize the movie as a vampire-werewolf type Romeo and Juliet.  "At first I thought, that's the lamest idea I've ever heard in my life," he said. "[But] when the whole Romeo and Juliet thing came into play, it was really just to set up the state of the two races.  Instead of Montagues and Capulets, they're werewolves and vampires.  Just kind of that tension.  The forbidden nature of them being together.  That was much more of the thrust of the Romeo and Juliet idea than ... just the all-out love story. ... Things like a love story in a driving action film I always have a hard time with. ... Our love story was always a bit more, I guess, like Aliens than Romeo and Juliet. ... Ripley and Hicks. ... Dangerous and on the run." 

LET THE WOOKIE WIN!  (IN EPISODE III) 
   Peter Mayhew is eager to reprise his role as Chewbacca, the hairy Wookiee, in the upcoming STAR WARS: EPISODE III.  "You've got to have a link between Episode III and Episode IV," Mayhew said.  "Consequently, the older characters have got to be there. Otherwise it doesn't gel. And what better character to have, as one of the older members of the [original trilogy's] cast, than Chewbacca to come back and connect everything together?  I was very surprised and very pleased to get that phone call." 
   Production on EPISODE III is well underway in Australia, and Samuel L. Jackson, in fact, has already completed his scenes as Jedi Master Mace Windu. Mayhew, however, confirmed that he's not yet stepped before director George Lucas' camera.  "I just went out there to do some publicity for it, and they said, 'Right, we'll keep in touch and let you know when we need you,'"  Mayhew said. "I talked to George, and he was pleased to see us out there.  When I go back [to actually shoot Chewbacca scenes] he will be even more pleased, because he'll be one step closer to getting the movie finished." 
   Mayhew says "Chewie looks exactly the same as he always has.  It was a wonderful feeling for any actor or artist to create something that looks as good today as it did when it was new." EPISODE III will be released in 2005. 

NEW PETER PAN A BIT DIFFERENT 
   The upcoming live-action version of PETER PAN differs from what audiences may be used to. Lucy Fisher, producer says, "It's mysterious and dark and has so much bite and wit".  "It's the only story where you can go off on an adventure, be victorious over your father and then come back and climb into his lap." 
   As in the original play by J.M. Barrie, the new movie casts the same actor in the dual role of the father, Mr. Darling, and the pirate, Captain Hook.  In this case, British actor Jason Isaacs takes on the role of Wendy's dad.  "Like most people, I thought I had [known the story]," he said, “Then I read the book. The book is magnificent, quite violent and shocking in many ways, and works equally well for children and adults."  Isaacs added that Barrie describes Neverland as "the drawers in your mind that your mother tidies up when you're asleep." 
   The new PETER PAN, directed by Australian P.J. Hogan, also marks one of the few times that Pan will be played by an actual boy: U.S.-born Jeremy Sumpter, 13.  Women have generally played the eternally youthful sprite.

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COLLECTIBLES CORNER - 
by Gary can't wait for the new season of SMALLVILLE to start  Roberson 

"Hi...I'm Plenty..."  "But of course you are..." 
   Anyone recognizing those lines from DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER  might be interested in the latest offering from Harry N. Abrams called Bond Girls Are Forever.  It's another exsquisitely produced coffee - table book from Abrams, the company that does it best, written by John Cork, who put out the incredible James Bond - The Legasy (also from Abrams) and Maryam D'abo, who played the beautiful cellist Kara in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS.  This is a $40 book, but you can pre-order it from amazon.com for $28 ! 

"Alright you dogfaces, LISTEN UP!" 
   Even if you didn't put in any time in Uncle Sam's fighting forces, you may have thrilled at the exploits of Sgt. Rock and Easy Co., in the pages of the old DC comics war books.  Now you can get Rock, along with 4 of his squad members in the G.I. Joe Men of Easy Co.,  available from bigbadtoystore.com.  Also available, the French underground fighter Mmme. Marie, who comes with 5 outfits - 4 of which are disguises! 

Keep them out of the light, especially sunlight. 
Never get them wet. 
And, most importantly, no matter how much they cry, no matter how much they beg, NEVER FEED THEM AFTER MIDNIGHT!!!! 
   From one of my favorite Christmas movies,  Joe Dante's  GREMLINS,  comes a set of 3 action figures, produced by Mega.   There's  4" Gizmo, who comes with several fur balls and 3-D glasses. Theres the 7" Poker - Playing Gremlin who comes with playing cards, poker chips and a dealer's visor.  Finally there's  7"  Stripe, who comes with popcorn, candy and a circular saw blade!  Available from monstersdirect.com 

Finally,  Trick or Treat...Where's My PRECIOUS???? 
   Want to be the hit at the Halloween party this year?  There's the latex Gollum Mask,  and, if you're feeling particularly brutish, there's the latex Moria Orc Mask!  Both are available from the New Line Cinema Studio Store.

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IMAGINATIVE CINEMA COMING SOON 
SOME MUST SEE MOVIES FOR YOU! 

September 5th  THE ORDER 
Starring Heath Ledger, Mark Addy, Shannyn Sossamon 
   A thriller about a Catholic Priest who goes to Rome to solve a murder connected to the cultish habit of sin eating.  That is, consuming bread and salt off the bodies of the dying to ‘devour’ their sins.  This could be interesting or disgusting…but with Heath Ledger it will sure be good eye candy to watch. 
September 12th  CABIN FEVER 
Starring Jordan Ladd, Rider Strong, James DeBello, Cerina Vincent, Joey Kern 
   This pic centers on an isolated group of five friends recently graduated from college. Their celebration at a remote log cabin in the woods is crashed by a crazy stranger covered in bloody sores. The group scares him off, but the man made contact, leaving all of them vulnerable to a nasty skin disease. When one of the kids' flesh starts to deteriorate, the rest of the group locks her in a shed, after which they're all left to wonder who's next.. 
September 19th   UNDERWORLD 
Starring: Kate Beckinsale, Scott Speedman 
   A movie made for the lovers of Romeo and Juliet with just a wild twist, Vampires and Werewolves!  An aristocratic vampire warrior falls head over heels (or is it cape over fangs) for the vampires mortal enemy, a werewolf.  The two make for some great scenes with love and powers colliding and old instincts reasserting. 
September 19th   COLD CREEK MANOR 
Starring: Dennis Quaid, Shron Stone, Stephan Dorff 
   A couple and their kids move to a house in the country, but their idyllic family life is threatened when a man reveals that there's more to the house than meets the eye - it seems that the original owners were brutally murdered. 

September 19th  BUBBA HO - TEP  (limited release in seattle/portland area then expands) 
Starring Bruce Campbell, Ossie Davis, Reggie Bannister, Bob Ivy 
   Here is one all ICS members should enjoy.  Imagine if you will: Elvis is tired of fame so he switches places with an Elvis impersonator.  The impersonator dies and, now stuck in a nursing home, the real Elvis can't get anyone to believe his true identity.  To make matters worse, he must fight off an evil mummy with the help of a fellow inmate who thinks he's JFK. 

October10th   THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD 
Starring Jurgen Prochnow, Jonathan Cherry, Ellie Cornell, Clint Howard 
   A group of college students on spring break in Seattle make plans to hit a rave on a remote island just outside the city. But when they arrive late - having missed the main boat - they discover the island deserted and no revelers in sight. Finally they meet two trembling students who say the rest of the kids were attacked and eaten by zombies. 

October 17th  TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE 
Starring Jessica Biel, Eric Balfour Andrew Bryniarski (Leatherface), R. Lee Ermey (Sheriff Hoyt), John Larroquette (Narrator), Andrew Prine (The Old Man) 
   This is a remake of the 70s slasher film we all know and love.  Set in the 1970s.  Not much more to say other than think about it – John Larroquette as the narrator. 

October 24th    SCARY MOVIE 3 
Starring Anna Faris, Charlie Sheen, Anthony Anderson, Pamela Anderson, Peter Boyle, George Carlin, Simon Cowell, Fat Joe and countless others 
   A young orphan goes on a journey with mystical powers.  Spoofed are Signs, The Ring, Matrix Reloaded, and some LOTR.  Two other movies that get roasted this time around are The Hulk and The Others.  Again, not much more to say. 

Oct 31st  HAPPY HALLOWEEN! 
ALIEN   (Rerelease ) 
   On the big screen again.  This is the first of the science-fiction horror movies that made Sigourney Weaver, as Officer Ripley, a star and launched a franchise.  Ridley Scott directed this original, about the crew of the commercial spaceship Nostromo during their journey home to Earth.  En route they receive an SOS signal and touch down on a nearby planet, where they discover strange eggs.  After a creature attacks crewmember Kane, putting him in a coma, the crew realizes that the planet isn't quite as deserted as it first seemed.  In space no one can hear you scream.

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CAT SOUP- released by Central Park Media, 09/09/03. MSRP 19.99, 34 minutes. 
The folks at CPM have described this as ‘Hello Kitty on crack’, and judging by the trailer, that seems to be a pretty accurate description. A kitten named Nyaako has her soul stolen by death and she and her brother venture out to find it in a bizarre dreamscape. There’s virtually no dialogue in this strange art film, so it’s curious that a Japanese/English audio selection is listed. There is a 5.1 dolby digital track for the background music, and some other nice extras such as director’s commentary. 
NINJA SCROLL TV VOLUME 1- released by Urban Vision, 09/02/03. MSRP 24.99 
This is the thirteen episode series that ties in with the 1993 Madhouse film NINJA SCROLL (which is also being re-released in a new special edition version from Manga Entertainment). In this first disc, Jubei Kibagami, a ninja for hire, is trying to protect the mysterious Dragon Stone from being stolen by other ninja’s who wish to use it for dark purposes. 
THE BIG O COLLECTOR’S SET- Bandai, 09/16/03. MSRP 44.98 
The first season of the tremendously popular TV show, available in a two-disc set, for all of those who missed its original individual 4 disc release. Be glad you waited- it’s much cheaper this way! It’s the story of Roger Smith, a negotiator who along with a giant robot called ‘the big o’, protects the peace in Paradigm city, a place where all the inhabitants of no memory of who they are. 
Extra features include textless ending and opening, staff and voice actor interviews and an art gallery. 
DOOMED MEGALOPOLIS SPECIAL EDITION- ADV films, 09/30/03. MSRP 29.98, 175 minutes. 
Based on a horror novel by Hiroshi Aramata. He story begins in  Japan in 1912, when an Evil sorcerer Kato has plans to resurrect the spirit of the warrior Taro Masakado and destroy Tokyo. But first he needs the untapped powers of a woman named Yukari. Unfortunately for Kato, Yukari has many spirits protecting her, but in the end the person to thwart his plans is Taro. Instead Kato bides his time and waits until he can use Yukari’s 
daughter to unleash his destruction instead. But then an unlikely warrior opposes him, a young shrine maiden named Keiko. One of the real interesting aspects of he story is the blending of real historical events with fiction, such as the Kanto earthquake, a real event in 1923, which in this story is supposedly triggered by Kato in his events to destroy the city. 
Long considered a classic, this special edition contains the original Japanese language track with English subtitles, as opposed to just the Streamline pictures English dub that was the only available US version previously. Considering how strongly this show is rooted in Japanese culture, this is a real benefit. 

BLUE GENDER BOXSET- funimation, 09/30/03. MSRP 119.98 
Yuji is a teenager who has discovered that he has an incurable illness. Not wanting to give up just yet, he undergoes artificial hibernation in hopes that someday doctors can cure him. However when he wakes up he discovers that the world he knew has now been taking over by an alien called Blue, a destructive creature who eats anything, even humans. With humanity on the verge of extinction he only choice left is to fight. 
This intense sci-fi series has been showing on Adult Swim recently, and for those who have been watching, this set is a good way to see any scenes that may have been edited out (like some of the violence and sexuality…wait a minute…wasn’t the point of having the AS program was so that stuff could be left in?) Also, it’s a way to watch it in the original Japanese language. BLUE GENDER originally aired late at night in Japan as well, which is why the show could get away with so much violence. 
“Flcl” Tokyopop, 09/16/03, MSRP 9.99 
The manga version of one of the most insane anime ever made. Naota’s life is difficult enough having to deal with adolescence, a weird family and the fact that his brother’s ex-girlfriend is now hitting on him. So needless to say, he’s not enthusiastic when an alien named Haruharu Haruko moves into his family and takes advantage of the fact that uhm, well…weird alien technology occasionally springs from his forehead. Yeah, it’s really warped, but it’s warped with a deeper meaning to it at least. It’s just very hard to figure out what all of that deeper meaning is. 

Well there’s some bad news for SAILOR MOON fans. Due to some really bizarre restrictions by the Japanese copyright holder, the 2nd season box set will not have episode 67. The American licenser, ADV films, is of course not too happy about this, since this release was meant to be the uncut and unedited version. But there’s nothing ADV can do about, and at least the episode isn’t really vital to the flow of the story, but of course fans are still upset. The main guess for this restriction is that the Japanese company (presumably Toei) is concerned about reverse importation, which could down on the sales of Japanese editions. 
But there’s good news for fans of the four woman manga-ka team known as Clamp. Tokyopop has announced two of the earlier titles, the Indian mythology inspired “RG Veda” and ‘Tokyo Babylon”, which is sort of like the introduction for the later masterpiece “X/1999”. Also Del Rey, who has just started up in manga, has announced the licenses to Clamps two newest works, “Tsubasa Reservior Chronicles’ and “XXXholic”, which proves that they at leas have good taste. Or someone working there who really knows what they’re doing.

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DIGITAL VIDEO ESSENTIALS DISC 
   This is for serious videophiles that don't want to go through the hassles of tweaking their system.  I tweak mine and sometimes, it’s a pain in the butt.  This new Digital Video Essentials is (as reported by the company) a DVD calibration disc that can get your system working optimally in 30 minutes.....for $24....What??? Didya expect something for nuthin' ??? 
CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

SOMETHING FOR NUTHIN???? 
Free CD Burner software as reported by Tech TV.  CDBurnerXP Pro. Yes, it burns CDs.  No, you don't need XP to use it. (According to the author, it should work with other versions of Windows.).  No, you don't really need to be a pro to figure it out. The interface is straightforward, especially for those of you who have experience-using Nero. 
CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS

INTERNET VIDEO MAGAZINE
   The leading guide for creating Videos and Movies for the Internet. Whether you just love cruising the Internet and watching videos, movies and animated shorts, or if you want to create your own Internet masterpieces, this is the site for you. 
   Included is how-to information, product reviews, tutorials, sources and links for home video enthusiasts who want to create and send family videos to grandma via email as well as professional content producers who want to create and distribute their sophisticated productions and programming. 
   Coverage encompasses today's and tomorrow's network video compression, transmission and production technologies, as well as future online and Internet based video editing and storage capabilities. We also cover everything from camcorders, digital desktop video editing programs up to satellite distribution technologies. 
   Internet Video Magazine includes reviews and announcements from vendors and developers throughout the industry - from inexpensive consumer video telegram creation programs to complex online media management suites and everything in-between. 

MediaChannel.com
   Welcome to "MediaChannel"...one of the most exciting and entertaining websites on the Internet.  First, you might be asking, "what is MediaChannel?"  Well, MediaChannel is a unique website that is dedicated to guiding web visitors to video content that can be viewed over the Internet.  That's right, you will be able to view this video content using your PC or MAC! 
   Second, you may be asking, "what do I need to view this Internet-video".  The answer depends on what websites you visit.  Some of the websites listed will not require anything at all (see No Plug-ins or Web Cameras).  Other websites will require you to install a video viewer or plug-in.  Now don't get intimidated with these video viewers, they are all easy to install. Not only that, some of the video viewers are probably already installed on your system (i.e. QuickTime or .AVI).

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Brianne Murphy, the first female director of photography invited to join the American Society of Cinematographers, has died at 70. 
After moving to Hollywood, she met low-budget horror film producer Jerry Warren, whom she later married and divorced. Warren offered Murphy a $50-a-week job handling props, makeup, hair, wardrobe, script and stills on the 1956 film MAN BEAST . She even wore the furry costume of an abominable snowman in a couple of scenes but was too short for the rubber suit of the MAN BEAST. When the director of photography volunteered to take over wearing the suit, she told Fangoria in an interview, he handed his light meter to Murphy, who had been picking his brain about his job, and said she would have to shoot the scene. A career was born. 
Murphy worked on three more pictures for Warren, THE INCREDIBLE PETREFIED WORLD, TEENAGE ZOMBIES and HOUSE OF THE BLACK DEATH , but didn’t get 
a director of cinematography credit until the 1980 Anne Bancroft film, FATSO. 
“This woman was a pioneer, and she certainly raised the bar for women in this field”, said Judy Irola, a director of photography, an ASC member and the head of cinematography at USC's School of Cinema-Television. “She did something that nobody had done before”, Irola said. “Women had directed, but women weren't seen as serious technicians”. 

Charles Bronson, who starred as Roger Corman’s MACHINE GUN KELLY and was one of THE MGNIFICENT SEVEN and THE DIRTY DOZEN, has died.  He was also the 
claustrophobic “Tunnel King” in THE GREAT ESCAPE and the star of the highly popular DEATH WISH series.  ICSers will remember him for his roles in the genre pictures THE HOUSE OF WAX and MASTER OF THE WORLD, both with Vincent Price. 
He first achieved stardom in Europe in the late 1960s and went on to a successful career here in the states.  Among Bronson’s later films are HARD TIMES, BREAKOUT, ST. IVES, FROM NOON TILL THREE, DEATH HUNT, TELEFON, LOVE AND BULLETS and MURPHY'S LAW, as well as TV movies, including RAID ON ENTEBBE and ACT OF VENGEANCE.  He was 81.

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THE LAST WARD…
by John Ward

I don't like Star Trek
 There.  I've said it. 
I've finally confessed to the truth, and I feel released.  In the immortal words of someone or other, I can't remember who, "The truth shall set me free."  And they were right; I feel free.  Free to rant about why I've been clamming up all these years. 
 Star Trek was cool when I was ten.  I didn't discover the show right away; I was 8 years old in 1966 and didn't know anything about boldly going on a five-year mission.  But I found it in its second year, and really latched onto it in year 3, when NBC effectively killed it by sticking it in the graveyard slot, Friday nights at 10.  So I didn't have long to enjoy it before it went belly up. 
 But my friends and I were definitely into all things Trek.  My best friend Greg was a member of the Star Trek fan club in its infancy, and had all kinds of decals, stationery, books, and posters from the show. He wore one of those funky breast insignias on his shirt every day for weeks, and when someone asked him what it felt like to play Captain Kirk (I think it was me), he archly replied, "This is Spock's insignia.  A first officer.  Don't you know anything?" 
 Well, I knew that Trek was unlike any other show I had ever seen, including groundbreakers like The Twilight Zone and The Outer Limits.  Those shows were fading just as I was getting into science fiction and fantasy; Trek came along at just the right time.  And some of the early episodes became cherished, lifelong favorites:  "Amok Time," with Spock in heat, "Mirror, Mirror," with all those doppelgangers, "The City on the Edge of Forever," which a buddy knocked as the closest thing to a "chick show" that Trek ever did, and "Wolf in the Fold," a neat take on the Jack-the-Ripper mythos.  And, of course, "The Trouble with Tribbles," my all-time favorite.  Then there were my guilty pleasures, like "Spectre of the Gun," set in a cheesy, dreamlike OK Corral, and the weird one with Abraham Lincoln.  I mean, come on!  Did any of us really think he would survive the episode? 
 But that was then.  Star Trek went away for awhile, and I found other favorites.  When the show came back in syndication, I was able to catch up on all the early shows that I had missed.  Then we got word that Star Trek was coming back.  On the big screen, yet! 
 By then, I was in college.  I remember my years at Penn State (1976-1980) with fondness; I also remember those years as a string of movies that, for one reason or another, completely rocked my campus world: ROCKY,  with a climax that literally brought the entire cheering audience to its feet; ANIMAL HOUSE, the perfect comedy to see with your dorm buddies; SUPERMAN, the movie that brought all the comic book geeks together; THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW, a film that defied explanation; and, finally, in December of my senior year, STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE. 
 The anticipation level for ST:TMP left all those other flicks in the cosmic dust.  The local twinplex that was slated to show the movie considered selling advance tickets, but nixed the idea when scuzzy, smelly college students started camping outside the theater before Thanksgiving break.  Everyone was looking forward to this one; I interviewed the local chapter of the Star Trek fan club for the campus paper, and found them trying to project a certain level of cool, but you could tell they were eager, too. 
 I remember the night it opened.  We had gotten in line about mid-afternoon, just to guarantee seats for the early evening show, and it was cold outside.  We stamped our feet, but it didn't help.  Especially for those of us with flat feet.  We just ended up sore, which didn't help our collective mood once the film started to run. 
 At first, the reaction was incredible.  To this day, STAR TREK: THE MOTION PICTURE remains as the only film I have ever seen whose opening credits drew wild cheers from the crowd in the theater. 
 Then the actual movie started. 
 And I think that's when I started to dislike Star Trek.  Because what was onscreen was huge, bloated, dull, and literally full of itself; over and over again, we were subjected to long, slow, loving camera pans of the Enterprise, as if the glitzy special effects could disguise the massive holes in the plot.  It angered me to think that, after years of waiting, hoping, planning, and filming, the best the writers could come up with was the return of the Voyager space probe. 
 STAR TREK II:  THE WRATH OF KHAN lacked originality as well, but at least it was exciting, with a scenery-chewing performance from Ricardo Montalban.  In hindsight, TWOK was misleading, because it led fans to believe there was yet some hope for the franchise.  Then STAR TREK III gave us Christopher Lloyd as a wacko Klingon, STAR TREK IV got preachy with its Save the Whales message, and STAR TREK V made the colossal mistake of putting William Shatner in the director's chair (not to mention asking Nichelle Nichols to do a fan dance).  There were some nice moments in STAR TREK VI, but the original cast was getting pretty long in the tooth, and you wondered if they had overstayed their welcome. 
 By this time, Star Trek: The Next Generation had premiered on television.  I gave the first episode a look.  Patrick Stewart made a strong impression, but not enough to keep me coming back.  The damn ship had Whoopi Goldberg tending bar, for pity's sake!  I walked away.  It wasn't the same show for me.  This meant, of course, that I missed out on Q and the whole Borg thing.  Was that enough to entice me back, catching up on the summer reruns? 
 Nope. 
 The only other episode of Next Generation that I watched was the one where Denise Crosby died, and that was it.  Deep Space Nine came along, but I couldn't get interested.  The only DS9 episode I remember watching was the FORREST GUMP take-off that spliced in the old "Tribbles" footage.  And even that was a rip-off. 
 When the Next Generation crew started making movies, I was mildly interested, but only to see Patrick Stewart share the screen with William Shatner: the battle of the titanic captains!  Once again, a disappointment: the expected meeting didn't happen until the three-quarter mark, and it was kind of like watching a carny geek show, or the feeling you get when you slow down to pass a car wreck.  Not to mention even more ungodly scenery-chewing, this time from Shatner and guest villain Malcolm McDowell. 
 I was drawn to STAR TREK: FIRST CONTACT for a number of reasons, chief among them the chance to see what all this Borg fuss was about.  This time, I liked what I saw.  The movie was exciting, and it had some nice supporting performances from James Cromwell and Alfre Woodard.  The ending, with the Klingons landing, actually gave me a chill, as if I was a witness to history. 
 But once again, it was all a creative tease.  I hadn't connected with the TV shows at all, and that included Voyager, which I can honestly say I have never seen.  When the Next Generation crew went back to the movie well again with INSURRECTION and NEMESIS, I was done.  I didn't even tune in to Enterprise, and from what I hear, I'm not missing much. 
            What would it take to bring me back?  It would take the impossible, actually, because we'd have to go back in time to the late '60s.  We'd have to try and convince a bunch of thick-headed NBC suits that giving up on a quality piece of science fiction like Star Trek is a pretty stupid move.  And we'd have to convince Leonard Nimoy that keeping the ears on would not be tantamount to career suicide. 
 But in the end, such an impossible request would be pretty selfish, because all it would do is prolong the life of the only incarnation of Star Trek I ever really cared about.  And it would be a risky gamble, too; a fourth or fifth season of the original Trek might have been that proverbial unnecessary trip to the well.  I can see it now:  the crew of the Enterprise goes back in time to the early '60s...McCoy is stranded in Dallas, with the medical skills to save President Kennedy and Lee Harvey Oswald a day later...and for some reason, Oswald looks just like Scott Bakula...which brings me back to the Enterprise... 
 Forget it. 
 For me, this ship has sailed.

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SEPTEMBER CALENDAR
MARK THESE DATES
September 11th  Second Anniversary – 
A Moment of Silence for those who died in the terrorist acts. 

September 12th  CABIN FEVER opens 

September 19th   UNDERWORLD, COLD CREEK MANOR and BUBBA HO - TEP open at theatres

September 22nd   ICSFILES editor Betsy’s 42nd birthday. 

September 27rd   Saturday  -ICS MEETING – fun will always abound here!