Tuesday, May 12, 2009

1984 Jams and Starman

I blame the T-800 model for my sudden 1984 enthusiasm. Don't worry, I think it's a 24 hour bug. It'll pass. See, I was watching The Terminator again yesterday (a few posts coming your way to lead up to Terminator Salvation). So, I started researching 1984 and if these old movie songs have to be stuck in my head today, they should also be stuck in yours.

I believe in sharing.

I often forget how long Diane Lane (Streets of Fire, the second clip) has been rocking the movie screens, don't you?

On the other hand, I do remember Jeff Bridges (Against All Odds, third clip) circa 1984, both bearded and un. He made quite an, um, impression in Starman. That's still one of the weirdest Oscar nominations ever for Best Actor. I love that he was nominated for his alien role but I didn't realize it was at the expense of another performance that I've always been furious missed the shortlist, Steve Martin's comedic genius in All of Me. According to my bible Inside Oscar both Clint Eastwood for Tightrope and Jeff Bridges for Starman were campaigning hard that year. Steve Martin was considered to be way ahead of them in the race for his NYFCC winning comedic role in All of Me. Who knew?

It states
Jeff Bridges journeyed through America, visiting Boston, St. Louis, Denver, San Francisco, and, on three separate trips, New York, in order to remain in the public eye after starring as a sweet-natured extra-terrestrial in Starman. The head of publicity for the film noted, "He's wonderful to look at and friendly to talk to and the press likes him." So did Hollywood. "Within the movie industry," commented New York magazine, "Bridges is thought of as a hard-workding, untemperamental actor."

Despite their self-ballyhooing, Eastwood and Bridges remained long shots, so columnist Marilyn Beck checked in on a sure thing: "Steve Martin, anxiously awaiting tomorrow's announcement of Academy Awards nominees, reports, 'Three months ago I wasn't even thinking I'd be included, but now so many people are talking about it, they've got me all worked up.' "
Poor Steve. It must be especially rough to be the one everyone thinks will make it that gets snubbed... especially if you've never been nominated for your acting (see also: Dennis Quaid, Far From Heaven in 2002). I'm confident that history will continue to smile on Martin's early and midcareer work. If you ask me he should have Robin Williams' Oscar tally rather than his own.


Cinesnatch said...

He got a lot of attention (and awards I think) for Roxanne, so that also was considered a snub.

Jim Carrey experienced a similar fate.

But you know the Academy and comedy today.

mrripley said...

ok nat you brough t it up your best actor nominations for 1984

mine are (* wins)
f murray abraham amadeus*
john hurt nineteen eighty four
albert finney under the volcano
steve martin all of me
victor banerjee a passage to india

Fox said...

The opening to Streets of Fire is amazing. My crush on Diane Lane started here.

In fact, I played a Streets of Fire trailer at my wedding. I know, sounds weird... I'll explain someday.


vince -- yep. which is why i made the robin williams comment. i don't understand how williams is more deserving than Martin. have never understood it.

mrripley. i actually haven't seen under the volcano (shame on moi)

so i'd say

f murray abraham -amadeus
jeff bridges -starman
tom hulce -amadeus
steve martin -all of me *

and the 5th spot still up for grabs though I'm tempted to say Christopher Lambert in Greystoke. but i haven't seen it since the 80s so who knows.


Fox. it's weird to me that Diane Lane's career always stayed somewhere in the middle. I think it's because the big years didn't quite pan out. 1984 was also her COTTON CLUB year and that didn't really work for anyone at the time (i'm so curious to see it in the here and now and see how it's aged), including the academy for the most part.

mrripley said...

shame indeed you also missed jacqueline bisset who is very good in it too.

Brad hansen said...

Speaking of Karen Allen, I wrote an unsolicited script for a Starman sequel back in 1998. It was my first script and I quit college to finish it. It’s been gathering dust ever since. I sent it to Jeff Bridges and John carpenter, although I would prefer if Carpenter didn’t direct a sequel. I wrote some good f/x sequences and some interesting characters. I’m pretty sure I’ll never be involved, but I’d to see the f/x scene from the beach being incorporated, (Jeff’s manager Neil will know the one, totally plagiarised from another movie, but it would look great on film today). If anyone has any questions, email me at hansenfilm@yahoo.ie and I’ll answer them. (Although I won’t give away any plot points. And yes there is a son and indeed, I actually have the perfect casting suggestion!!


wow Brad.

it is weird that Starman didn't spawn a sequel because didn't it spawn a shortlived television series?

par3182 said...

f murray abraham – amadeus
victor banerjee – a passage to india
jeff bridges – starman
steve martin – all of me
matthew modine - birdy


you're not choosing six?

par3182 said...

you know i want to but i'm sticking to the oscar rules...

i found supporting actor in '84 much more interesting -

colin firth – another country
anthony michael hall – sixteen candles
jeffrey jones – amadeus
bronson pinchot – beverly hills cop
denzel washington – a soldier’s story

(i'm loving the 80s flashback - can you please do '85 soon?)

Janice said...

Couple of thoughts after watching those clips:

1) Why doesn't Diane Lane have a better career than she does? It is her taste in projects? And, does she have a portrait in the attic that is aging for her?

2) What's with the old-fashioned microphones in the Streets of Fire clip? More to the point, it's amazing how old-fashioned that sequence seems - not so much the costumes and hair (well, that too) but the LENGTH of the shots. The fact that the entire musical number is in the film, and stays mostly with Diane onstage except for a few cutaways...positively old-fashioned, especially compared with, say, the chop-socky editing of Moulin Rouge. Even the clip from Against All Odds seems old-fashioned in terms of its length - a single shot of Rachel Ward's face, no camera movement, no cutaways? What, were they mad? Or was there still a presumption then that audiences could hold their attention to one image for longer than five seconds?

3) Annie Lennox now, Annie Lennox forever.

Owen said...

I keep waiting for Steve Martin to make a return to his Roxanne/LA Story/Dirty Rotten Scoundrel glory days...and then he keeps making kid's movie sequels.

But the most important question here...is City of Fire any good? That's quite the cast.