Today on Soundtrack Alley Spotlight, I’ll be discussing films like K-Pax, Minority Report, Resident Evil and even Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. Part 10 of The History of Sci-Fi is coming at you! I hope you can enjoy everything I bring out.
So the 20th Century has been canned and sealed, onto the 21st Century of Science Fiction in Film. As usual there is an upgrowth of new science fiction that comes out every single year. What is notable though for the history of science fiction in film? Is it something horrible that was made and it should have stayed a book? Battlefield Earth may have been an excellent book, but when translated to film, it was abismal. How about The 6th Day? That was a film regarding human cloning and resulting example of what would happen if you knew you were a clone and yet you thought you were the original person? How about the morality of creating a clone? What about the Sheep named Dolly? Was it ethical to create such a sheep? This film asks those deeper seated questions for science fiction. I appreciated the sci-fi elements of the movie and I enjoyed the performances, and I know before you say anything, Arnold Swarzeneggar isn’t the best actor, but he performed well for this one.
Pitch Black, which was a great science fiction film as well as horror movie that gave you the appeal of sequels for that great universe. This was one of the few I really enjoyed for the world of science fiction. There was a comical film called Evolution and it was enjoyable and also asked some hard science fiction questions even though it was a comedy. Then there were films like Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, Ghost of Mars, Jurassic Park III, The remake of Planet of the Apes, The One, and a honest good science fiction that didn’t need special effects K-PAX. K-PAX was one film that made a person think about deeper questions and they never really answered if the main character played by Kevin Spacey was an alien or not. You had elusions to it, but never concrete and sometimes that was what made the film brilliant in different respects. The History of Science Fiction in film proves that you don’t necessarily need some big action and advances in technology to produce a good quality science fiction film. There was more questions raised in that film than other people can even quantify.
Sometimes call back movies are excellent for the world of science fiction. It makes people take note of films that once were. Eight Legged Freaks was an homage to 1950’s horror films and is often overlooked for the world of science fiction. It should be noted that it’s not a great film, but it keeps the campiness of 1950’s science fiction. We also get films such Imposter, Rollerball, and Simone. Some of these films are call backs to earlier versions of movies in times past. Steven Spielberg produced another amazing adventure mystery in the 2000’s with Minority Report. Consider it like future police. Or precognition police. It asked many questions regarding one murder and how that one was solved or left unsolved for so long and how some people just are inherently evil or good depending on who it is.
John Williams did so much in the 2000’s, continuing to collaborate with George Lucas and Steven Spielberg and did a brilliant job with both. As I have brought out before, there were alot of science fiction films that came out in the 2000’s. One of note in the world of science fiction is Resident Evil. This film was based upon a video game and there hadn’t been a zombie genre that came about before it. Resident Evil started it all. The zombie horror blend of science fiction became larger and larger as years went by and created offshoots of films that were either parody of zombies or straight up horror. It all comes down to science fiction that went wrong to some point. Not the biggest fan, but if you want to note the history of science fiction in film, this spawned several sequels and created other movies to “hop on the bandwagon” so to speak.
Another film that really stands out to me is a film that blended the fantasy element of Dragons and the real world science fiction element of Dragons in real life. Reign of Fire was excellent in it’s execution of post-apocalyptic films along with fantasy as dragons were brought to life and were not just fiction anymore. This was a great film for the world of science fiction and can be truly appreciated for it’s realistic effects of the dragons and how it portrayed people in the post-apocalyptic world. This could have easily been a book series taken to the next level.
Then there were the Alien invasion films that started popping up with Signs, and X-Files and more. We recieved our final Star Trek film before it was rebooted, we also got the remake of The Time Machine. It was an excellent interpretation of the original idea and Guy Pierce was an excellent actor to portray it. Also it asked the many philosophical questions that are often brought up in science fiction. Why can’t I change the past? Why go to the future? There are some deep questioning in that film and we all as science fiction lovers can appreciate that sentiment.
Then of course we got the next installment in the Star Wars Saga with Attack of the Clones. This actually advanced the technology for film rendering of faces that were digitally composited to be the same or very like the next, it pushed the face recognition software to be updated, to create better renditions of people that possibly no longer existed and bring them to the silver screen for brief appearances. The technology for the mass clone army was also a step forward. George Lucas had all the cards and was able to advance science fiction in ways no one thought possible.
Alexander Schiebel composed Soundtrack Alley’s Theme Music
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Amazon has some excellent choices for scores from these films. If you want to purchase them, check them out through the links provided.
The Sixth Day, K-Pax, Minority Report, Resident Evil, Reign of Fire, The Time Machine, and Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones