Flickchart Daily: Matchup of the Day & New Movies in Theaters
Flickchart Matchup of the Day
Dr. Seuss was born on this date 108 years ago. For the Matchup of the Day, we have the only film Seuss ever wrote a screenplay for going up against a science fiction flick that I watched all the time as a kid:
I’m no child psychologist, but both seem to be about boys who have nightmares because they lack a positive father figure. Well, that isn’t the primary conflict in Dreamscape, but it’s an important part of the story. Dennis Quaid plays a psychic who is recruited by the government for a program that is studying how to link to an individual’s subconscious via their dreams. One of the test subjects is a kid who experiences a reoccurring nightmare involving a snake man. Quaid volunteers to enter into his dream in order to help him overcome his psychological issues. While they are running from the snake man monster, the boy points to his father and says “He won’t help us”. So, Quaid ends up distracting the creature while the young fellow chops it with an axe.
The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T is entirely about Bart and his piano-oriented nightmare. In the real world, he is forced to practice the instrument by his tyrannical teacher Dr. Terwilliker. His well-meaning mother wants him to learn piano, but Bart and the plumber, Mr. Zabladowski, think Terwilliker is up to no good. Bart likes Zabladowski and wants him to marry his mother, who is a widow.
After some monotonous practicing, Bart nods off and enters a dream world dominated by Terwilliker. His evil plan involves kidnapping 500 young boys and forcing them to play a giant piano day and night. Bart’s mother is under Terwilliker’s spell. Zabladowsk is installing sinks in the piano prison and is unaware of the diabolical scheme. When Bart convinces him of Terwilliker’s plot, they band together to vanquish him.
Dr. Seuss wasn’t pleased with The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T and didn’t want anything to do with it after the film’s release. I didn’t get much from it myself. There was more imagination behind the dreamworld in Dr. T than what Dreamscape had to offer, I’ll give it that. I was mostly left cold by the lackluster musical numbers and uncharismatic cast. At least the nuclear holocaust nightmare scenes in Dreamscape still make an impression on me after all these years, even if the snake man just seems silly now.
Friday’s New Movie Releases
SPECIAL BIRTHDAY RECOGNITION(S)
Jon Bon Jovi is 50 today. Here he is with “Blaze of Glory”, his Academy Award nominated song for the Young Guns 2 soundtrack:
Davy Jones from The Monkees passed away a couple days ago. I saw him speak in person at a screening of the film Head a few years back, so that was nice. In case you missed all the tributes and news stories, here he is singing “Daydream Believer”. I always liked this song.