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Don't Go to Sleep (1982)
Ghost story stands the test of time
I remember watching "Don't Go to Sleep" on television when it first came out in 1982. At the time, I was in my teens, able to remember much of the movie, for this is one of those that stays with you over the years, even if you cannot remember the title of it.
A young girl dies in a car accident and seeks revenge on her family by using her sister as a medium for the ghostly activity. One by one, the family members get knocked off through mysterious circumstances.
Dennis Weaver (Duel) and Valerie Harper star as the parents who are having marital troubles, as well as troubled relationships with their surviving children, Mary (Robin Ignico) and Kevin (Oliver Robins). The young siblings always seem to be fighting, yet there is one seeming comfort for Mary: the ghost of her dead sister, Jennifer (Kristin Cumming).
The story is tightly written, unwinds nicely over the stretch of 93 minutes that keeps the viewer sitting on the edge of the seat. As a psychological study, it is brilliant; as a horror story, it is genius with a subtle touch. A must see for any fan of ghost stories.
Clash of the Titans (2010)
Not bad for a remake
Initially I was hesitant about seeing this remake, having seen the original when it first came out in 1981. As good as CGI effects are - and they don't get any better than in this movie - I still respect the old school Harryhausen stop-motion technique. "Clash of the Titans" is best suited for those who enjoy fantasy and Greek myth rolled into one. One element that stood out of place was the mechanical owl, who is Athena's patron in the original film. Also unlike the original, the majority of the Olympic deities do not have much interaction with Zeus save for Hades, well performed by Ralph Fiennes. Having a RADA actor in a modern fantasy film does make all the difference in the world. My only animadversion about the film is that Sam Worthington was made up to look like he was better suited for Marine fatigues and not a tunic. All in all, a great family movie to enjoy on a Sunday night.