Friday, 3 September 2010

Are You a Member of the CULT? - Logan's Run (1976, MGM)

'It's different now, because it's me! My Life!' - Logan 5

If you were around in the 70's, you might have heard of a little film called Logan's Run, based on the book by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson. There is one change from the book, and thats the age limit to 30. It's the year 2274. People live in huge domes, and have their wildest dreams and fantasies come true, all by servo-mechanisms. Once they reach the age of 30, they must enter the fiery ritual of Carousel once beckoned, and thus be 'Renewed'. Of course, there are people who want to reach 31, and so go on the run, becoming 'Runners', and are hunted by a 'Sandman' (a kind of human version of the Terminator). One Sandman is Logan 5, who is tasked, after finding an object called an Ankh on a dead Runner, to find a place called Sanctuary, and destroy it. But, it all changes when he gets outside...

'Logan, I understand, we all go a little crazy sometimes.....' - Francis 6
I want one of those guns!

Starring Michael York as Logan 5, Richard Jordan as Francis 6, and Jenny Agutter as Jessica 6, Logan's Run is nothing more than a chase movie, but it's such a good chase movie, and was the first to feature special laser photography, and in doing so, won a special Academy Award for special effects. The film does have a bit of nudity, especially in a place called The Love Shop, where everything slows down, and people get a bit 'frisky'. Lots of bums and breasts wobbling about a bit, but covered in some sort of body paint. And when Logan and Jessica go outside, the effects to make it a desolate and ravaged world are just as good, with flora, fauna and vines all around the Washington Monument, and around the Lincoln Building, where the two first encounter the Lincoln Statue (Is that the face of....old?), and then the Hall of Congress, where they find Old Man (Peter Ustinov), who is surrounded by lots of cats (who he can't remember the names of). You do get a feeling that it gave James Cameron a sort of idea for The Terminator, and it certainly draws some parallels, even if they are unintentional:
Logan is both Sarah Conner and Kyle Reese, with him trying to stay one step ahead of his pursuer.
Francis is The Terminator, who'll stop at nothing to get his target.

'Fish, Plankton, Sea Greens. Fresh from the sea.' - Box
Some excellent model work, and not something you can knock up from a £4.99 model kit!

The music by Jerry Goldsmith is just as good as well, with many good tracks that set up the various action scenes (like the fight between The Doctor in New You and Logan), and even the main theme is good, where it starts with sparsity, and then builds into it, until it becomes something you'd recognize as a Jerry Goldsmith theme.

'Run, Runner!' - Logan 5
'Did you not hear him? RUN!'' - Francis 6
'Well, it's the first time I've been on a carousel, and there's no ride on horses!'
It's unashamedly 70's kitsch. It has dated, but by god, it's a great movie. And, coupled with the also rather excellent Westworld (also set in the future), you have the perfect 'Fractured Future' double bill. Just be careful when you get to 30, and make sure you have your running shoes on.

1 comment:

  1. Nice one, I keep meaning to watch this. According to Ross from Friends, it's the "sexiest film ever"... :P