Just forget the words and sing along

Sunday, October 26, 2003

Some think that I had a sheltered upbringing because I don't watch a lot of horror movies. Not true. On TV right now, I'm watching one of the horror movies I watched quite a bit when I was growing up: Poltergeist. That is still a good movie.

It's interesting reading about that film's history. It was written and produced by the god of film himself, Steven Spielberg. It was made at the same time that Spielberg was making E.T. and actually hit theatres two weeks after E.T. Spielberg meant for the two films to be point and counterpoint; two sides of the same coin. Whereas E.T. was the suburban dream, Poltergeist was the suburban nightmare. Together, they were the fairy tale and the ghost story.

And because of that relationship, it still debated as to who really directed Poltergeist. The onscreen "directed by" credit goes to cult film director Tobe Hooper, who also directed the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre. But, because it was written by Spielberg, produced by Spielberg, and has a general Spielberg style to it, many argue that Spielberg himself actually directed most of it. To me, it doesn't matter. It's still a good movie.

I'm also watching more of my Star Trek V DVD. One of the bonus materials is an interview and retrospective with Herman Zimmerman. Zimmerman was the production designer on the Star Treks V thru Nemesis, and on every series save for the original. He is the man directly responsible for the "look" of the Star Trek universe. And do you know what he says was his biggest design challenge? Creating the space station Deep Space Nine. When he was given the task, he was only given two design critera: 1) Make it look kind of like an oil platform in space. 2) It had to be as instantly recognizable as the Enterprise. How he tackled it was quite in-depth. Since the station was meant to be built by the Cardassians, he first sat down and planned out what Cardassian architecture would be like. Then worked from there.

Next Issue...Live from New York

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