A NOTE TO THE CLUB
I bet when you opened this email, a few questions popped
into your head. Such as, Where’s Betsy? Or maybe Why
does the newsletter look so darn scruffy? There’s a reason for that.
By now, most of you have heard that the club lost a dear and valued member
last month when Jim Childs passed away. Plans are in the works to
honor Jim over the coming months, but for now, his wife Betsy has requested
time away from the ICSFiles. So what you hold in your hands is a
poor imitation of what Betsy works extremely hard to bring out on a regular
basis, and we all hope she comes back to the editorial reins soon.
All About Us ClubnewsClubnewsICS
DATE: MAY 26, 2007
LOCATION: PERRY HALL PRESBYTERIAN
CHURCH FELLOWSHIP HALL
TREASURER’S REPORT: $2300.26
2ND ANNUAL MEMORIAL DAY BLAST!!
Club members enjoyed the Second
Annual ICS Memorial Day Cookout, with grillmaster Steve Vaught making a
return appearance at the coals. (Thanks, Steve!) Everyone brought
something to contribute, and a good time was had by all.
WHEN “PC” DIDN’T MEAN “POLITICALLY
Club president David Willard
gave a presentation on “pre-code movies,” films made before the advent
of the Production Code in 1934. It was a fascinating exploration
of a time when movies got away with an impressive variety of “politically
incorrect” themes. Club members selected a little-known political
fantasy-drama called GABRIEL OVER THE WHITE HOUSE, starring Walter Huston
as a President who experiences something of a divine intervention.
“LATE NIGHT” GOES QUIETLY INTO
Club treasurer Andrew Kent announced
that his schedule would no longer allow him to monitor late night features.
Consequently, we need a new equipment manager to maintain the equipment.
With no volunteers stepping forward at the meeting, the late night feature
has been suspended indefinitely.
ICS AT SHORE LEAVE?
The club is waiting to hear
from the folks at Shore Leave about the availability of a fan table for
the club. If plans work out, the club will man a table at the convention
for publicity and recruiting purposes.
Upcoming genre TV discussed
– Pushing Daisies, Eli Stone, Cavemen, Moonlight, Reaper, The Sarah Connor
Chronicles, Bionic Woman, Journeyman, Chuck, Heroes: Origins. Club
members also enthusiastically discussed the following season finales:
24, Battlestar: Galactica, Ghost Whisperer, Heroes, Lost, Medium, Smallville,
ON THE HORIZON:
Upcoming dates for the ICS:
a. June 30th – Exploitation
Cinema (Norman Jones)
b. July 28th – Pizza Night/Fantasy
Cinema (John Clayton)
c. August 28th – Female Vampires
Club members discussed the following
recent releases: VACANCY, FRACTURE, HOT FUZZ, THE INVISIBLE, NEXT,
THE CONDEMNED, SPIDER-MAN 3, 28 WEEKS LATER, SHREK THE THIRD, PIRATES OF
THE CARIBBEAN AT WORLD’S END, BUG, THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY.
a brand-new feature…
6/27 LIVE FREE OR DIE HARD
I.C.S. Trivia Quiz #1 by G. "Braniac" Roberson
1. The spacecraft NOSTROMO in the film ALIEN was named
after a craft in what classic novel? Hint: this novel also inspired Coppola's
2. What was ironic about the director of the Vincent
Price 3-D horror classic HOUSE OF WAX?
3. What 1970's Brian DePalma horror thriller got not
1, but 2 Oscar nominations? and for what?
4. The bulk of the rights to film Ian Fleming's James
Bond novels were optioned by Albert "Cubby" Broccoli and Harry Saltzman...all
except one, which was the hot property of producer Kevin McClory.
He filmed it twice, under 2 different titles, which were...?
5. THE WIZARD OF OZ has hundreds of fascinating "behind
the scenes" tales. One of them involves MGM head Louis B. Mayer who originally
wanted the "wicked witch" to be played as an evil, but beautiful blonde
sexy villian, and screen tests were done with actress Gale Sonnegard in
the role. What made him change his mind and go with Margaret Hamilton?
6. The great actor Sean Connery sang a few bars of
Undrneath the Mango Tree in his 1st Bond movie, DR. NO, as the lovely Ursula
Andress, humming the same tune, rises up out of the ocean. (actually Ursula,
in that bikini had every guy in the audience humming...) Sean, however
performs a whole song with the lovely Janet Munro in what previous film?
What's the name of the tune? As a bonus, name the stage musical Connery
appeared in before he got into film acting.
7. In the TV series Lost In Space, the Robinson's
spacecraft was called the Jupiter 2. What became of the Jupiter 1?
What was the original name of the spacecraft, as used in the unaired pilot
8. This prolific film music composer, recently deceased,
lent his incredible talents to such films as ROBOCOP, STARSHIP TROOPERS,
RED DAWN, CONAN THE BARBARIAN and FLESH AND BLOOD, amongst many others.
Who was he?
9. What superb action thriller takes place in the
upper floors of the Noritaki Plaza?
10. Last, but not least! What infamous film,
directed by Howard Hughes, inadvertantly lead to the early deaths by cancer
of some of the cast and crew, amongst them John Wayne, Susan Hayward and
Pedro Armindez, because it was unknowingly filmed in a radioactive area
of desert formerly part of an atomic bomb testing site? Bonus: what part
did John Wayne play in the film?
The answers, and new questions, in next month's issue!
Good bye farewellsfarewellsfarewells
Don Herbert, who explained the wonderful
world of science to millions of young baby boomers on television in the
1950s and '60s as Mr. Wizard and did the same for another generation of
youngsters on the Nickelodeon cable TV channel in the 1980s, died Tuesday.
He was 89.
Herbert launched his weekly
half-hour science show, WATCH MR WIZARD, for children on NBC in 1951. He
used basic experiments to teach scientific principles to his TV audience
via an in-studio guest boy or girl who assisted in the experiments. That
show ran for 14 years.
WATCH MR. WIZARD garnered numerous
honors, including a Peabody Award, four Ohio State awards and the Thomas
Alva Edison Foundation Award for "Best Science TV Program for Youth."
“Over the years, Don has been
personally responsible for more people going into the sciences than any
other single person in this country," George Tressel, a National Science
Foundation official, said. "I fully realize the number is virtually endless
when I talk to scientists, they all say that Mr. Wizard taught them to
Actress Mala Powers, who played
Roxane to Jose Ferrer's CYRANO DE BERGERAC and starred in other films of
the 1950s, has died.
She was born Mary Ellen Powers
in 1931 in San Francisco to journalist parents who later moved to Hollywood.
She began training as an actress at an early age at Max Reinhardt's Dramatic
Workshop and as a preteen had a bit part in a 1942 Bowery Boys movie, TOUGH
AS THEY COME. In 1951 she starred as a rape victim in OUTRAGE, directed
by Ida Lupino. The film created a minor sensation because of its subject
matter. Howard Hughes, impressed by Powers' performances (in CYRANO and
OUTRAGE), placed her under contract at RKO.
Her other films included EDGE
OF DOOM, ROSE OF CIMARRON, CITY THAT NEVER SLEEPS, RAGE AT DAWN, BENGAZI,
THE STORM RIDER, TAMMY AND THE BACHELOR, MAN ON THE PROWL and DADDY’S GONE
A-HUNTING. There were also such genre movies as THE UNKNOWN TERROR, THE
COLOSSUS OF NEW YORK and THE DOOMSDAY MACHINE. She was 75.
THE LAST WARD . . .
Lock all the doors and windows!
Hide the women and children! Just when you thought it was safe to
go back to the newsletter…the magic ellipsis returns!!
What happened to GRINDHOUSE?
… Two months later, and I’m still trying to figure out how the movie tanked…Personal
theory: Releasing such an outrageous gorefest over the Easter holiday weekend
was probably a bad idea…I am consoling myself with the excellent coffee
table book GRINDHOUSE: The Sleaze-Filled Saga of an Exploitation Double
Feature, containing lots of inside info and pictures on the making of the
film…The book also contains the shooting script for Planet Terror, the
Robert Rodriguez half of the movie, as well as behind-the-scenes stuff
on the making of Machete and Thanksgiving, two of the fake trailers…highly
recommended for fans of the film…
Speaking of books…currently
on my bookshelf, waiting to be read…Invisible Prey by John Sandford…One
Shot by Lee Child…Clemente: The Passion and Grace of Baseball’s Last Hero
by David Maraniss…Dr. No by Ian Fleming…Night by Elie Wiesel…
A brief look at my Netflix
queue…The Sopranos, Seasons 2 through 6…That should take me most of the
summer…BEND OF THE RIVER and WINCHESTER ’73, two James Stewart westerns…THE
HOUSE THAT DRIPPED BLOOD…HERE COMES MR. JORDAN…DEAD RECKONING with Humphrey
Bogart…SERENITY…Jess Franco’s COUNT DRACULA with Christopher Lee and Klaus
Kinski…SCARFACE: THE SHAME OF A NATION with Paul Muni...Fritz Lang’s M
with Peter Lorre…something called BIG BAD WOLF…and even GHOST RIDER!!...I’ve
heard complaints that Netflix takes forever to send out the new releases…I’ve
found that not to be the case…since I usually hit Netflix for the classics,
they’re always available, and by the time I feel like watching a new release,
it’s usually there…
The best films of the first
half of 2007: GRINDHOUSE, PAN’S LABYRINTH, and ZODIAC…The worst movie of
2007 (so far): HANNIBAL RISING…The biggest disappointment (so far): SPIDER-MAN
Against my better judgment,
I went to see FANTASTIC FOUR: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER with No. 1 Son…the
movie didn’t suck…wonder of wonders…I had less hope for this one than I
did for HANNIBAL RISING…one small quibble, though…Jessica Alba in a blonde
wig and blue contacts doesn’t really do it for me…of course, Jessica Alba
in just about anything else (like the new comedy GOOD LUCK CHUCK) – smokin’!
(As Mr. Roberson would put it)…and speaking of hot Jessicas in summer comedies…anyone
else seen the trailer for the Adam Sandler comedy I NOW PRONOUNCE YOU CHUCK
AND LARRY with Jessica Biel?...almost enough to get me into the theater
for an Adam Sandler comedy…
What’s left for genre fans
in the second half of 2007?...here’s an update from my earlier list…July:
TRANSFORMERS and THE SIMPSONS MOVIE…Yes, I plan to see both…August: THE
BOURNE ULTIMATUM, THE INVASION, and HALLOWEEN…at least one of those should
be damn good, at least one other has possibilities…I’ll leave it to you
to guess which ones…September: SHOOT ‘EM UP with Clive Owen and Paul Giamatti…looks
like an homage to early John Woo…October: VANTAGE POINT, 3:10 TO YUMA,
and 30 DAYS OF NIGHT…the first, an assassination thriller told from multiple
POVs…the second, a remake of a classic Glenn Ford western with Russell
Crowe and Christian Bale, directed by James WALK THE LINE Mangold…the third,
an adaptation of the well-reviewed graphic novel about vampires above the
Arctic Circle…November: AMERICAN GANGSTER and FRED CLAUS…December: ALIEN
VS. PREDATOR 2, RIPLEY’S BELIEVE IT OR NOT, and last but far from least,
I AM LEGEND…I’ve heard the new AvP movie might go out with an R rating…the
RIPLEY’S movie is directed by Tim Burton and stars Jim Carrey, and it’s
actually a look at the real-life Ripley, who traveled the globe seeking
out oddities…and then there’s I AM LEGEND…I’ve seen the first teaser trailer,
and I can’t wait for this one…some of the shots look pretty eerie…Will
Smith should make big bucks this winter…which would be a first for the
Richard Matheson source novel, right?...
The American Film Institute
celebrated its 10th anniversary of “Top 100” TV specials last week with
a revision of its very first list: the Top 100 American Movies ever
made…Genre movies (horror, sci-fi, fantasy, Hitchcock, etc) were well represented…CITIZEN
KANE held onto its no. 1 spot for the second time…THE GODFATHER passed
CASABLANCA for no. 2…VERTIGO was the highest ranking genre film at no.
9…followed by THE WIZARD OF OZ (10)…STAR WARS EPISODE IV (13)…PSYCHO (14)…2001:
A SPACE ODYSSEY (15)…IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (20)…E.T. THE EXTRATERRESTRIAL
(24)…SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS (34)…DR. STRANGELOVE (39)…KING KONG
(41)…REAR WINDOW (48)…THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING
(50)…NORTH BY NORTHWEST (55)…JAWS (56)…RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (66)…A CLOCKWORK
ORANGE (70)…THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS (74)…THE SIXTH SENSE (89)…BLADE RUNNER
(97)…TOY STORY (99)…You might notice that quite a few of these films showed
up on our very own ICS All-Time Top 100 Genre Movies list several months
back…A few notes…I included DR. STRANGELOVE because it plays out as a paranoid
fantasy satire…the KING KONG listed is, of course, the 1933 original…LOTR:
FELLOWSHIP was the highest-ranking movie released in the last 10 years…in
other words, since the last list…a few complaints…I did not think 2001
deserved such a high ranking, if it deserved to be ranked at all…but I
know I’m in a very small minority here…also, I didn’t think THE SIXTH SENSE
was good enough to be included on this list…there were plenty of other
movies, both genre and non-genre, that deserved it more…
Folks, it’s late on Sunday
night, and I want to get this into email shape and out to you, so I’ll
sign off…see you next month…
We miss you, Mr. Childs…
CALENDER OF EVENTS
6/30 ICS JUNE MEETING
7/11 HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX
7/13-15 SHORE LEAVE 29 – Hunt Valley Marriott
7/13 THE STRANGERS
7/21 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is released
7/27 THE SIMPSONS MOVIE
I KNOW WHO KILLED ME
7/28 ICS JULY MEETING – PIZZA NIGHT!!