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One of the great classics
I don't write many reviews, and I'm certainly not a huge Spielberg fan, so for me to do this is quite rare.
I've seen this movie probably just as often as the original Star Wars trilogy (which is over 300 times give or take). Close Encounters was one of those movies I got to see once before I was 13. When this movie came out I was 7 years old, but I had to choose: watch this, or watch Star Wars. The latter won. :)
Star Wars is better in every sense (in my opinion). Largely due to the superior special effects, but the story of Close Encounters was something I've always found more intriguing. What I loved most about the story itself was how the witnesses shared that common vision (Devils Tower, Wyoming), and struggled to find the answer to it. Richard Dreyfuss was absolutely brilliant as that regular guy trying to piece things together, and stay sane at the same time.
However, the kidnapping of the little boy was a bit over the top. That's something I would have handled differently, because the end result shows a dangerous, almost vicious, side to the aliens. And at the end of the movie we're supposed to like them! So that's a combination of factors I never understood.
This movie was made in an era when space exploration was becoming cool again, and TV networks, as well as Hollywood producers, rolled with it. Space: 1999, Buck Rogers, Battlestar Galactica, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Star Wars, THX-1138, Close Encounters and so many many many more.
For me the classics will always win. I even find the original 1953 version of War of the Worlds better than the 2005 version. If you want aliens and humor, watch Spaced Invaders. It's funny and lovable. But for a good story, Close Encounters of the Third Kind doesn't fail. Of course, some people are always too picky.
When this show was first aired, most viewers didn't know these kids were actors. We were told that a class was handed some cameras and asked to film as much of their daily routine as possible. So to create a good level of amateurism, the camera work looked very sloppy. They constantly filmed each other, even after school, and after moving into a house together. Later they even went on vacation together. The setup went from class project to soap opera/sitcom.
No language censorship, no professional filming and no studios. This created the necessary level of reality that made the show great and I for one am patiently waiting for the whole thing to be released on DVD.
Way to go, BNN!
And Romy....you're still hot!
So Bad It's Fun To Watch
"So Bad It's Fun To Watch"
That was sort of the unofficial description that travelled the world, together with this TV-special.
I don't remember seeing it on TV back in '78, but I probably did. To make the Star Wars collection complete I decided to go out and buy it, not being sure what to expect. But OMG! It's actually worse than Episode 1!
I don't know what was more torture: the stupid cartoons or the singing!
At least most of the original cast was in it. All for one, I guess.
But there is a positive side to this thing....Chewbacca. Peter Mayhew was put up front for this and it gives the fans a look into the life of a Wookie. We also get to see what a friend Han Solo really is!
You'll watch this with a smile on your face, but you'll forget you saw it real quick.
Lucky Number Slevin (2006)
Pleasantly Surprised (small spoiler warning)
I never thought I'd see the day I would like a film starring Josh Hartnett, but Morgan Freeman stole the show! This film has plenty of surprises lurking around various corners, a strong line-up of actors, one plot going head on against another plot, Ben Kingsley with a beat-up accent and the sexy and beautiful Lucy Liu.
I like to think that Stanley Tucci could have done more with his character, or maybe he just can't pull off the "bad cop" routine, and Bruce Willis got to use what he learned during The Jackal.
If you like movies like Snatch and Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels, this is a must see for you.