Monday, 11 July 2011

Boy, have we got a vacation for you... for you... for you... for you...


The classic 1973 sci-fi thriller written by Michael Crichton, remains my all-time favourite SF movie. It's got everything - an unsettling ambience, a haunting soundtrack, the future, the past, Yul Brynner's finest performance, technology gone wrong (surely Crichton's favourite subject!), a gunslinging robot on the rampage and moustache-ridden 1970s style sex with androids. Well, I'm not sure of the latter is a prerequisite of a great movie, but it's one of the may facets of Westworld.

Flares and facial hair aside, it's one of those movies which still stands up strong today. Any big budget remake would never recapture the tense atmosphere and suspense of the original, not to mention Fred Karlin's grating, nightmarish soundtrack. The bulk of the movie sees the manic gunslinger robot pursuing  Richard Benjamin's character through the inanimate theme-park worlds of Medieval World, Roman world and West World, in a superbly directed sequence of events - the nightmare robot who refuses to die, which Terminator used so well was started here.

I was probably around 7 or 8 years old when I first saw Westworld, and it was one of the few movies which utterly terrified me, and is one of the few movies of it's kind that I can still enjoy over again today with the same sense of thrill and excitement.

What a shame they had to go and make Futureworld!

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