Thursday December 17, 2020
He Ain't Heard Nothing Yet
“And there's one good explanation for why we got all these light-hearted pictures. It came from the director of 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers,' science fiction film, Phil Kaufman. He told me he thinks that people are simply bored with their everyday lives: with their jobs, everything, they don't want to see anything remotely related to this earth. So we get the science fiction films that take us out into space, and also 'Grease,' which comes out of nowhere. ... One thing that concerns me as a film critic, and probably you, too, is: Are we ever going to get serious pictures? Are these blockbusters going to crowd us out?”
-- Gene Siskel, during the special “A Look Back at 1978” episode of “Sneak Previews,” as he and Roger Ebert try to make sense of the silly genre films the public is suddenly embracing in the late 1970s. He nailed it. He asked the right question. “Are these blockbusters going to crowd us out?” Yes and no. Serious films will still be made, but they will be so marginal as to be nonexistent.