Sunday, December 20, 2009

January 23, 2010 - Escape From New York, The Thing & Big Trouble in Little China

Our regularly monthly movie party for January brings together three great movies pairing actor Kurt Russell and director John Carpenter.

Escape From New York is one of those films that had a lasting impact, inspiring numerous knockoffs none of which can touch the original (not to mention a sequel that is for all purposes a lesser re-imagining). I love Russell's Eastwood-like performance, which is all the more appropriate in that he was paired with the late, great Lee Van Cleef. Not having cable growing up (and in the days before VHS so rentals weren't yet an option), I was introduced to many an 80s classic at my friend Mark's house. Escape was one such film.

The Thing, a remake in its own right, was a film very much unappreciated when it was released in the summer of 1982. Many will say that in the wake of E.T. the world wasn't interested in a less than benevolent alien. In the ensuing years the film has been embraced by millions - but for those of us who grew up watching it on video, we always knew it was a classic.

Big Trouble in Little China was the first Russell/Carpenter flick that I was able to see theatrically. I saw it with Joe and it's one of those films that you left the theater quoting - and we still do to this day. It's another film that was ahead of its time. Back then, the average filmgoer wasn't familiar with the Chinese cinema this film was faithfully referencing. As with The Thing, it's fan base has grown through the years. If you've been to the Lamb you've likely seen it, but if you haven't, you should know that we have a Jack Burton figure in our china cabinet, or as I like to think of it, our Big Trouble in Little China Cabinet.

If I have one regret, it's that we don't have time to re-run the series with the Russell/Carpenter commentary tracks for each of these. While the films themselves are great entertainment, it's a rare opportunity to feel like you're sitting back and joking with the guys you're watching onscreen. You can tell that they had as much fun making the films as we do watching them.

Join us for this triple feature that is action packed, horrifying, and hilarious.

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