The nineties was favorable for the creation of films they dedicated to gloss natural catastrophes of all types.
“Twister” (1996), “Un called town Dante’s Peak” (1997) or “Volcano” (1997) they were designed like vehicles that gave exit to new techniques of special effects by computer and they verified, also, an alarming ideas lack demonstration and opportunism on the part of Hollywood.
Two decades before, in the seventy, yes a kind of catastrophes with their own constant was consolidated that, occasionally, offered good works. A film of catastrophes of that epoch, years before the technical innovators computerized of nowadays, is fancied me now more credible and entertained that any joke as “Twister”, will be for the nostalgia…
The disaster movies of the seventy were an agonizing swaying of a Hollywood in full metamorphosis. With the television finally consolidated and the before so powerful industry of the large studies now in comatose state, was necessary to give a blow of effect, as already had happened in the fifty with the apparition of the spectacular films biblical and historic of Cecil B. DeMille or Samuel Bronston, answer of Hollywood before the arrival of the television. In this occasion, the movies themselves autoreivindicaría with films again spectacular, large decorated, brilliant special effects and of sound and large you crash that, now, are veterans actors of the Hollywood classical, that will nest conveniently in the autumn of their careers in the movies of catastrophes.
The new Hollywood should be spectacular, and full of (veteran) stars, now alone there was that to attract the spectator, and ¿which was the best form to exhibit the expensive special effects and the well full actors? This time itself did not respond to the Bible as in the fifty, but, fruit perhaps of an unconscious fear by the own security and stability of the capitalist system before the economic crisis of principles of decade, or because was known about the morbid curiosity that produces in the human Being the destruction, or simply because there was not more ideas, was decided that a good natural catastrophe (earthquake, volcanic eruptions, shipwreck, plane crash, Contagious virus, avalanche of snow, fires or seaquakes, hurricanes and cyclones) more a few known actors of unlike personality faced among them by the survival, they would suffice so that the public to be yielded again to the power of Hollywood.
The screenwriters were served in many cases of real tragedies as the earthquake of San Francisco of 1906 or the fire of the dirigible Hindenburg in 1937, besides films of the past taken like reference as “San Francisco” (W.S. They go Dyke, 1936), “Chicago” (Henry King, 1936) or “El sinking of the Titanic” (Jean Negulesco, 1953), although what is important was to choose what catastrophe would be shown and to have a good design of production so that the scenes of destruction were the most truthful and spectacular.
Irwin Allen, producing and director, was the maximum maker of the kind of catastrophes, its main reference, and actors as George Kennedy, Ernest Borgnine, Ava Gardner, Paul Newman or above all Charlton Heston, the main and mature heroes whose fame still could attract the fan to the movies.
The phenomenon of catastrophes produced so many good films as byproducts to use and to throw dedicated to exploit the vein of cheap and fast form. Independently that as kind did not arrive, neither by I appear, to the expressive elevations of the western or the musical, and that its narrative possibilities were exhausted in a few years, can always result entertained to revise, for example, some of these films:
- “Aeropuerto” (1970, George Seaton). Air tragedy. A passing psychopath of a 707 has a bomb in his power. Of Martin, Burt Lancaster, Jean Seberg and Jacqueline Bisset in the main credits. The first and more decent movie of the series “Aeropuerto”, that includes “Aeropuerto 75″ (now the airplane of same old is the 747, larger, more passing and therefore, more disastrous), “Aeropuerto 77″ (the 747 sinks in the sea with passengers inside) and “Aeropuerto 80″ (this time, with the deceased Agree, then symbol of modernity, and Sylvia Kristel, Emmanuelle for more signs, in the distribution). The figure that accompanies to the title of the film corresponds to the year of its premiere, there was so many consequences that there was that to help the public to differentiate…
- “La adventure of the Poseidón” (1972, Ronald Neame). Shipwreck. It defines the constant of the kind of catastrophes (a catastrophe as plot center, and various personages that try to be saved while resolve their own personal dramas). It nominated to eight Oscar.
- “El colossus in flames” (1974, John Guillermin, Irwin Allen). Fire. The disaster movie more box-office. Paul Newman as the architect of the highest building of the world (138 flats) and Steve McQueen as fire chief.
- “Terremoto” (1974, Mark Robson). Seismic tremors. The Sensurround is inaugurated, with the one that, apparently, the spectator feels the terrible earthquake of The Angels in its own meats. Ava Gardner and Charlton Heston star in this apocalypse.
- “Huracán” (1974, Jerry Jameson). Weather tragedy. TV movie premiered in movie theaters with Larry (”JR”) Hagman. It based on the real event of the hurricane Camille.
- “Montaña Russian” (1976, James Goldstone). Catastrophe in an amusement park. The monda lironda, they plan to sabotage a species of Port Adventure, being baited, logically, in the dangerous and most spectacular attractions.
- “Alerta red”. “Neptuno sunken” (1977, David Greene). Shipwreck. Collision between a submarine and a cargo boat. Charlton Heston again in screen.
- “El bridge of Cassandra” (1977, George Bread Cosmatos). Railway accident. It stars in Sofía Loren, produces its husband Carlo Ponti. European contribution to the movies of catastrophes. A good history of suspense.
- “Avalancha” (1978, Corey Allen). Catastrophe in the snow. A posh ski resort becomes a hell. It produced by Roger Corman. Noticeable special effects.
- “Meteoro” (1979, Ronald Neame). Collisions of meteorites. Russian scientists and Americans try to destroy to the meteor that threatens to collide with the Land. Deudora of “Cuando the worlds collide” (1951, Rudolph I Killed). Finally, New York will be the setting of the catastrophe.
- “Más there of the Poseidón” (1979, Irwin Allen). Shipwreck. Flojísima consequence of “La adventure of the Poseidón” with Michael Cane and Sally Field. The kind of catastrophes already was almost dead.
- “El day of the end of the world” (1980, James Goldstone). Volcanic eruption. A heavenly island with volcano included, a hotel, Paul Newman and William Holden. The volcano enters eruption, and the guests and locals should decide among being remained in the hotel or to be risked to flee.
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