Fuchs: There’s something wrong with Blair. He’s locked himself in his room and he won’t answer the door to me or anyone. So I took one of his notebooks from the lab. MacReady: Yeah… and? Fuchs: Listen: “It could have imitated a million life forms on a million planets. It could change into any one of them at any time. Now, it wants life forms on Earth.” MacReady: It’s getting cold in here Fuchs, and I haven’t slept for two days. Fuchs: Wait, there’s more… “It needs to be alone and in close proximity to a life form in order for it to be absorbed. The chameleon strikes in the dark.” MacReady: So is Blair cracking up or what? Fuchs: Damn it, MacReady! Listen! “There is still cellular activity in these burned remains. They’re not dead yet!”
In 1933, four years after the legendary stock market crash of 1929, America was in the middle of the Great Depression. Unemployment stood at 25%. More than 5,000 banks had failed. It was the year the Dust Bowl began, the times of “The Grapes of Wrath”. An estimated two million people were homeless… migrating across the United States in search of a way to sustain themselves. Soup lines stretched around the blocks.
Contrary to the popular myth, the movies were not ‘Depression-Proof’. They suffered a steep decline along with the rest of the economy. Ticket sales had soared after the 1927 introduction of “talkies” but peaked at 90 million tickets a week in 1930. By 1933, that number had declined by more than a third, to 50 million. Combined with the rollback in ticket prices, 1933 still marks the lowest year at the box office post 1929.
But that year, the country (and the world) would be given something to get excited over at the cinema. Something the likes of which audiences had never seen.
In the year of America’s bicentennial, we were introduced to a new American hero for the first time. An underdog with heart, given a miraculous opportunity, who gives it everything he’s got. The film would wind up winning three Oscars, including Best Picture, and inspire a string of sequels that would extended 30 years.
Hark! the herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!”
Joyful, all ye nations rise;
Join the triumph of the skies;
With angelic host proclaim
“Christ is born in Bethlehem!”
Hark! the herald angels sing
“Glory to the newborn King!”
Come to Los Angeles! The sun shines bright, the beaches are wide and inviting, and the orange groves stretch as far as the eye can see. There are jobs aplenty, and land is cheap. Every working man can have his own house, and inside every house, a happy, all-American family. You can have all this, and who knows… you could even be discovered, become a movie star… or at least see one. Life is good in Los Angeles… it’s paradise on Earth.
There was a time, a time before cable. When the local anchorman reigned supreme. When people believed everything they heard on TV. This was an age when only men were allowed to read the news. And in San Diego, one anchorman was more man then the rest.
His name was Ron Burgundy.
He was like a god walking amongst mere mortals. He had a voice that could make a wolverine purr and suits so fine they made Sinatra look like a hobo.
“I believe Lynch is a talented director, and that in ‘Blue Velvet’ he has used his talent in an unworthy way. The movie is powerful, challenging and made with great skill, and yet it made me feel pity for the actors who worked in it and anger at the director for taking liberties with them.”
- Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times, October 2nd 1986