Max Dugan Returns

Max Dugan Returns. 20th Century Fox 1983.

Before watching the movie:

This seems strongly positioned as a guardian angel/Mary Poppins kind of movie, but I think that’s just metaphorical, and hopefully tongue in cheek. The movie I would really like this to be is Max Dugan dropping into his daughter’s life expecting to fix everything and be instantly forgiven and failing miserably on both accounts, then working to earn his way back into her family and in the process making things better. That’s the plot vibe I’m getting from this movie, and I hope the magical trappings are just because it’s the kind of art Neil Simon brings to a project, because if it’s as straightforward as it looks, that would easily become too simple and saccharine.

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Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Invasion of the Body Snatchers. United Artists 1979.
Invasion of the Body Snatchers. United Artists 1978.

Before watching the movie:

I don’t normally like to see remakes before the original. When I do see the 1956 version, hopefully this won’t color it too much. However, the reason this is line-jumping is because I wanted to respect the death of Leonard Nimoy and this has turned out to be pretty much the only work he was involved in available to me that I haven’t seen and is a movie.

At any rate, this is billed as a “reimagining”, and appears to do a decent job at making the story relevant to the late 70s, which is always a problem when remaking science fiction decades later. I take it from the recommendation that brought this to my attention that Nimoy’s role is fairly significant, though I don’t know much about his star capital between Star Trek leaving television and entering theaters to judge whether he was a big enough name to get on the poster for minor roles.

I don’t want to make this post all about Nimoy, but it occurs to me that I may never have seen him play an onscreen role besides Spock.

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MASH

MASH. 20th Century Fox 1970.
MASH. 20th Century Fox 1970.

Before watching the movie:

I’ve seen a handful of episodes of the series, but I couldn’t say I know it very well. As I understand it, the book this is based on is intensely serious, the movie is a dark comedy, and the series started out almost at Hogan’s Heroes-level hilarity before getting even more morose than the movie (perhaps because the series lasted so long the war was longer for them than in reality).

So I guess what I’m expecting here is a cynical but amusing picture of the Korean War. I don’t know what characters from the series are there, and which are played by different actors, but I don’t know half of them anyway. There’s probably going to be a lot more money on the screen than a television sitcom can afford.

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