“Invasion of the Body Snatchers” – Nathan’s Movie Challenge, Week 7

Nathan Chase

Nathan Chase is a co-founder and the designer of Flickchart. He's also a multimedia designer & developer living in central Florida, an online culture and social networking enthusiast, a proud father, an avid PC gamer, an incessant movie watcher, known for an eclectic musical taste, and often writing and performing music - on the drums, guitar, piano, or computer. You can find Nathan on Flickchart as Zampa, and email him at nathan@flickchart.com.

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3 Responses

  1. David Conrad says:

    I’ve seen the black and white one, and remember enjoying it, but don’t remember it well enough to rate it.

  2. ZenDog says:

    Bodysnatchers is so highly rated because of Donald Sutherlands moustache.. It’s quintessentially 70’s

  3. aphexbrPaul says:

    Wow, I tend to agree with you but not here. I rewatched this a few months ago and was still struck by how great it was and still held up. Nostalgia perhaps, but that can’t be all can it? A few things to consider:

    1. Half the point of the movie is a satire of the social mores at the time, especially in a city like San Francisco. Nimoy’s entire character is a mockery of the cod philosophy and pop psychology prevalent at the time. Of course his lines were often terrible – that was the whole point!
    2. The awesome opening credit sequence, both unlike anything ever seen before and nicely cementing the biological inhuman nature of the threat. “Why do we always expect metal ships?”
    3. “It’s a rat turd! No it’s a caper!” Classic…
    4 Kevin McCarthy’s amusing cameo may well have passed you by if you haven’t seen the original, but it’s an entertaining moment, and leads into the general feeling of inhumanity, isolation and helpless even in crowds and among police.
    5. Some of the effects may have dated relatively badly, but some are utterly fantastic for the time (remember, this was 5 years before The Thing, before The Howling, etc). Maybe it’s just seeing it through modern eyes, but believe me this was *extremely* effective at the time. Look at the horror films of 1978 – which films’ effects are actually less cheesy/more effective? Not many. Yes, the dog is ropey but it’s a single shock moment, and was in concept totally unlike anything seen before – plus it’s directly relevant to the plot (something really freaky did have to happen to get the characters to expose themselves at that point).
    6. The fantastic twist ending. Even if you haven’t seen the film, you know that image…

    But hey, each to their own, It’s not a perfect film, and the climax is a little silly but it goes in some interesting places before that. The original version and Abel Ferrara’s version are also both worth checking out, especially as they re-examine the central premise in different locations (small town, military base), social eras and social groups, but I do enjoy them less. It’s currently nestling at #54/4899 on my Flickchart…