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Dark Star (1974)
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2015 8:07 pm    Post subject: Dark Star (1974) Reply with quote



In the beginning there was an ambitious little film project, shot at the University of Southern California by future famous director John Carpenter ("The Thing", "Starman") and screenwriter Dan O'Bannon ("Alien").

Originally only 45 minutes long, the 16mm featurette was later blown up to 35mm and doubled in length, thanks to financial backing by Jack H. Harris. The expanded version was given a limited theatrical release and eventually established itself as a cult favorite.

The plot of this sci-fi black comedy involves the crew of a small starship whose mission is to cruise the galaxy in search of unstable stars, which they blow up with nuclear devices (a questionable concept, to say the least. Blow up a star because it's going to blow up? Okay, but . . . well, never mind).

The ship's computer malfunctions, causing problems for the crew and their beach-ball-shaped alien companion. The special effects are highly enjoyable if viewed as examples of creativity-on-a-shoestring-budget. Screenwriter O'Bannon appears as Pinback.

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orzel-w
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"I have to go feed the alien." They just don't write 'em like that anymore.

No, wait. That's when they all started writing 'em like that.

And what's with that ship in the poster?

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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2015 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I knew when I picked it that the space craft didn't look like the one in the movie — but it was the best looking poster, and I've always been a sucker for pretty one-sheet. Laughing
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Gord Green
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This shows the ship as it appeared in the movie :





And I loved the "off the shelf" toy space helmets!



Not to mention the beachball pet alien!


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Maurice
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PostPosted: Sat May 27, 2017 1:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gord Green wrote:

And I loved the "off the shelf" toy space helmets!


My brother had that very one!
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Gord Green
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, I did too !!



I think it cost $5 !
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Custer
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's strange to see Alan Dean Foster's name featured on that first poster, almost as if he'd been the director of 2001 and The Poseidon Adventure, before moving on to creating this movie. As far as I'm aware, he did the novel version, just about the first of many he did that job for - including The Black Hole, Clash of the Titans, Outland, The Thing, Krull, The Last Starfighter, Shadowkeep, Starman, Pale Rider, The Dig, The Chronicles of Riddick... and he had a hand in the Star Wars books too, and Star Trek, and Alien, and Terminator, and Transformers...


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Krel
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Talking about toys in the movie, I read an interview years ago, where they said that the LASER rifle was made from a Mattel M16 toy.

Maybe that could be another tread, toys and models used as props in movies and TV. Any thoughts on it?

David.
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Gord Green
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A lot of gun props are repainted, reimagined NERF guns.
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Krel wrote:
Maybe that could be another tread, toys and models used as props in movies and TV. Any thoughts on it?

Interesting idea, David!

Perhaps you could start one in Sci-Fi Discussions in General, with a few nice jpegs to jazz it up! I'm not aware of any good examples right off the top of my head, but I'm sure some of the other folks know of good examples.
Very Happy
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Phantom
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 6:16 pm    Post subject: Dark Star (1975) Reply with quote

This was the lower half of a drive-in double feature. We went to see the upper half and to this day I don't remember what it was.

Everyone wanted to see it again. Unfortunately, it was the last show of the night and the drive-in manager couldn't be persuaded at the point of a gun (which we didn't have, anyway)

Never forgot it. For me, Benson Arizona is as iconic a theme song as Beware the Blob.

Snapped up the dvd as soon as it became available.


The crew in their quarters, the food locker, after their sleeping compartment was destroyed in an electrical storm (or something like that). I'm guessing the sleeping quarters in Conquest of Space didn't look like this. An image of the duality of man; soaring through space in an advanced technological era and looking like they are barely out of the stone age.




The imagery they achieved on a budget of about $1.50 is amazing. The movie, begun as a student project, put Carpenter and O'Bannon on the road to far more ambitious projects.









Their former commander in a cryogenic chamber. They can't raise the dead, but they can talk to them. It's too bad he's "forgotten so many things," but Doolittle's visit was certainly entertaining.




Doolittle's conversation with a philosophical bomb whose one purpose is to explode is even less successful and leads to a line that raised the hair on my head all those years ago.


Let there be light.





The ship destroyed, Doolittle's choice of death is to become a falling star. A touch of the poetic after all the madness.





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Krel.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 6:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I forgot to add all those years ago, they used a pair of "Creature From the Black Lagoon" hands as the alien's feet.

David.
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Eadie
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2020 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The song can be heard at:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xs-jXgNHW7Y
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Bud Brewster
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 11, 2024 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

______________________________________________

Believe it or not, I've yet to see this popular movie. I've never seen it scheduled on TV, and I've never made an effort to get it from someplace like Netflix.

But at least I'll finally get to hear the song that Phantom mentions in his post above.


_________________ Dark Star - Benson Arizona


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~ The Space Children (1958)
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tmlindsey
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 12, 2024 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've tried to watch it a few times and have never been able to get through it.
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