Top five sci-fi films according to Dan Landes
I don't have a large boatload of love for James Cameron, but I have got to put his movie Aliens on the list. The audience was tense from the time they were buying popcorn all the way through the final credits. We all knew what Ripley was up against, and Cameron played that tension to its fullest. Plus, Sigourney can rock a wife-beater.
2.) Repo Man
Otto, the greatest palindrome character name in sci-fi movie history, was the reluctant hero of 1984's Repo Man. First of all, releasing a dystopic movie in 1984 is pretty cool, but when I watched Alex Cox's movie, I realized the dystopia is real and we all live in it. ...aaannnddd the soundtrack, Iggy Pop, Fear, Circle Jerks, Suicidal Tendencies, [Jonathan Richman's]"Pablo Picasso"? What else do you want in a soundtrack?
1.) Star Wars: A New Hope
Considering the tumultuous (at best) relationship with my father, it's appropriate that I dedicate this Star Wars-inspired top five sci-fi list to him. While our major point of contention was me and my less-than-conventional approach to life, we did find common ground with sci-fi movies. In 1977, we, along with hundreds of other people, queued up on the sidewalk outside the Cooper theater on Colorado Boulevard, I was six years old. I couldn't read. Sitting in the big stadium seats, he leaned into my ear and whispered, "In a galaxy far, far away..." He smelled of aftershave.
Star Wars will always be at the top of my sci-fi movie list. However, it wasn't until I read Joesph Campbell's A Hero of a Thousand Faces that I began to realize it's genius. As a culture, we responded to the universal archetype of Luke's hero journey. We also responded to the visual badassery of Lucas Studios.
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