Thursday, August 10, 2017

Thursday Movie Picks #161: Summer Blockbusters

This being Thursday, it's time for another edition of "Thursday Movie Picks", the blogathon run by Wandering Through the Shelves. This week's theme is summer blockbusters, a theme that I have to admit is a bit tougher for me since I don't go to the movie theater that much. And I'm generally not a fan of the blockbuster type of movie anyway. But I'll pick three summer movies that more or less fit the category:

Jaws (1975). Jaws is generally considered to be the first summer blockbuster in that before then, wide releases weren't as common, although it actually only opened in about 400 theaters. Nowadays releases are much broader. Of course, you all know the story about the shark that attacks people and the desperate attempt to deal with the shark so as not to ruin people's beach holiday.

The Living Daylights (1987). Most of the Bond movies in recent decades have been summer releases, at least here in the US. This is the first one I was really paying attention to when it was released and reviews and whatnot. My brother-in-law is a much bigger Bond fan so he'd know all the trivia about the releases and not. It turned out this isn't the strongest entry among the Bond movies, although Timothy Dalton really wasn't that bad.

Dick Tracy (1990). OK, this isn't exactly a blockbuster. But I was finishing my senior year in high school when this one came out, and I remember they had a promotion for a special midnight premiere (I don't think that was very common especially in those days). I would have liked to go, but I didn't live anywhere near the nearest theater showing the premiere, and my parents would have nixed the idea anyway.


joel65913 said...

Jaws really did start the modern Summer Blockbuster era if only they were all as good as it is. I like Timothy Dalton as an actor and didn't think he was a terrible Bond but there have been others who fit the role better. However you're right about it doing huge business, I was managing a movie theatre when it came out and when we went to let the crowd in from the lobby to the theatre it was the only time I felt like I could be trampled so excited was the group to get into see the film. I wasn't that crazy about Dick Tracy but it did defy expectations and perform very well.

I went with three that just blew the roof off when they premiered.

Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)-This will be brief since I’m guessing there isn’t a soul who hasn’t seen this or doesn’t know the story. Opening with a throwback to the adventure of Saturday serials we meet Indiana Jones professor and treasure hunter. Learning that the Ark of the Covenant is at risk of falling into Nazi possession he sets out to get it into the safe hands of Uncle Sam instead. Along the way he meets up again with Marion Ravenwood, daughter of his old partner and a girl he done wrong, who in many ways is as tough as he is. High adventure follows. Just a flat out good time at the movies. Made a mint on release.

Total Recall (1990)-In the not too distant future Douglas Quaid (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is suffering from troubling dreams about battles on Mars. His wife (Sharon Stone) is dismissive of them but when he continues to have them he turns to Rekall Inc. a company that sell a different kind of vacation, implanted memories. But something happens when the memory is being placed and he ends up on Mars in a fight for his life…or is he? Very violent and convoluted but involving. Even now technically impressive and along with The Terminator the film that really put Arnold on top for a long time. Cost a fortune to make, made a fortune in theatres.

Grease (1978)-Well summer vacation is over and Danny Zuko (John Travolta) leader of the T-Birds is back from a trip to Australia where he met the demure Sandy Olsson (Olivia Newton-John) and had some Summer Lovin’. He’s back in his leather jacket and ready to pick up with his gang where he left off but surprise Sandy is a transfer student to his high school and now he’s torn between his image as a tough guy and his love for goody two shoes Sandy, who has been taken under the wing of The Pink Ladies lead by Rizzo (a far too old but sensational anyway Stockard Channing). Teen angst 50’s style, drag racing, a pregnancy scare, cameos by lots of classic stars and a load of good songs follow in this peppy adaptation of the Broadway hit. Raked in the bucks for months on original release then did it again when it was re-released to theatres for its 20th anniversary.

Birgit said...

We match with Jaws and this was a blockbuster for its day and started the whole thing and then, Star Wars cemented it. I always liked Timothy Dalton and thought he was quite good as Bond. I have not seen Dick Tracy and never wanted to just never appealed to me.

Dell said...

Jaws is an amazing movie, and indeed, the first summer blockbuster. Dick Tracy is so underrated. It needs more respect. Not the biggest fan of The Living Daylights, but I plan on revisiting it soon. Maybe I'll change my mind.

Myerla said...

Anyone whose says Timothy Dalton is a bad Bond doesn't know anything about James Bond, his brutal and bitter Bond is so much closer to the books than the camp Moore.