Michael Crichton: More than Jurassic Park

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Michael CrichtonMichael Crichton (1942-2008) was a prolific author, screenwriter and director for TV and movies, but it sometimes surprises me that he has become remembered almost entirely for a very short list of accomplishments… specifically, Jurassic Park, Westworld, The Andromeda Strain, and sometimes ER (of which he was creator, writer and executive producer).

But this rare creator not only penned many incredible novels besides the few most people think of, but he was the writer/director of some low-budget movies that so beautifully define him to me, including The Terminal Man, Runaway, and Looker.   His bigger-budget movies, such as Sphere, Rising Sun and Disclosure (also based on books), are also high on my list of movies to watch… when you can catch them. Continue reading

Jurassic World promises to be a… horserace?

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Yes, the first trailer for Jurassic World has been released!

And as much as I enjoyed it, I got the greatest kick out of what we saw at the end:

Jurassic raptor race
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My list of the greatest SF moments in TV and cinema

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enterprise_in_drydock_600Lists.  We love ’em, we make ’em, we argue over ’em, we share ’em.  And every now and then, we see a list that just demands that we respond with: “That’s a nice list; but here’s what it should have had…”

A recent list (on The Observation Deck) of the greatest science fiction moments that made you “weep for joy” made me think of SF’s greatest visual moments from my memory, and I realized that my list couldn’t include just F@&# YEAH! moments, but heartbreaking moments as well.  After all, SF’s greatest trait is its ability to make you rethink your world, and that doesn’t just come from cool explosions.

So, without further ado, and in no particular order, is my list of the greatest SF (visual) moments of TV and cinema, and how they impacted me. Continue reading