Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Sci Fi Top 100, #69: "Logan's Run" (1976)

Movie Stats:
Released 1976 (USA)
American, in English
Director - Michael Anderson
Stars - Michael York, Jenny Agutter, Richard Jordan

Plot Summary:
In a post-apocalyptic future, people live in absolute comfort in an idyllic city with one big flaw: no one is allowed to live past the age of 30. York stars as Logan, a cop (basically) whose belief system is shaken by a task he’s given; Agutter as Jessica, a woman who yearns for something more out of life; and Jordan as Francis, Logan’s BFF.

Violence; minor gore; female nudity (breasts and butt).

Bad Stuff:
Nothing is explained. Who built the city? Why? Why does everyone have to die at 30? Where did Box (Roscoe Lee Browne) come from? And why does he do what he does? Where did the Old Man’s (Peter Ustinov) parents come from? Etc. I guess there were some hints about the answers to these questions, some inferences that could be made, but nothing concrete. The movie ends without any true resolution.

The vast majority of the soundtrack is horrendous.

The special effects are laughable.

Good Stuff:
Most of the acting was pretty good, especially from the top billed people.

Costuming. I particularly liked the police uniform.

I have to admit that, although I hated the ending, the Old Man’s face when he was suddenly surrounded by people, after having been alone for most of his life, warmed my heart. That was a stellar moment from Ustinov.

The Verdict:
It’s a bit of a hot mess. I think the concept is interesting. I wouldn’t mind reading the book it’s based on and/or seeing a modern remake (something lacking the 1970s weirdness, with better special effects). This version, however, I wasn’t a fan of. The ending was the absolute worst. [SPOILER] Who are Logan and Jessica to decide how everyone else lives their lives? If given the choice, I’m sure some would have preferred a life of luxury and death at 30 to a life of toil and death at an indeterminate age. I thought it was pretty terrible of Logan to destroy the computer, and thus the city. I mean, wasn’t that what the whole movie was about, that people should have the right to choose? It wasn't sophisticated enough to be making a statement about hypocrisy; it's clear the ending was intended to be joyful. It doesn't make sense. [SPOILER] While it had a few good moments, and solid acting, in the end, I felt like, “[I]t is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.”

I give it 2.5 stars.


Patricia said...

Another one of those titles I'm familiar with by name, but couldn't have told you anything about it. I wouldn't even have guessed it was sci-fi.

There was that interesting concept movie about people who stop aging at 25 and then after that have to buy time or die. It was poorly executed and one of the things I found distracting was that with everyone so young (even the old people looked 25) no one had gravitas. It seems I only associate wisdom with older people.

balyien said...

Is that "Timer"? I heard it wasn't very good but I haven't seen it myself. I think associating wisdom with older people is definitely a societal thing. I've certainly known foolish older people.