Wednesday Double Feature
A friend of mine had recommended I did an alien visitors theme, mostly in the nineteen fifties sci-fi horror theme which included the remake of the Blob, but since this was one of the few times Scarecrow didn’t have an item on my list I decided to alter the theme oh so slightly to nice alien visitors.
The first on my list Brother From Another Planet was one that was mentioned in nearly every book on modern Sci-Fi cinema I know so I was looking forward to the opportunity to see this one.
Brother From Another Planet uses it’s story of a mute alien, who other than a three toed clawed foot looks just like an African-American, in Harlem as a metaphor for racism, immigration and ultimately assimilation.
For the most part the film is a wonderful study of people. For the most part the alien (referred to as the brother and wonderfully played by Joe Morton) meets good people who help him (though he frequently finds them confusing. )
There is wonderful lyrical quality to the film and other than a pair of Men in Black bounty hunters and some drug dealers remarkably devoid of conflict. Personally my favorite scene is when the Bounty Hunters arrive at the office of a social worker who’s been the Brother get work. They’ve been sweating numerous friends of the brother by pretending to be members of government agencies but here the city office snows them with paperwork for interdepartmental cooperation.
The other film the Cat From Outer Space is another one I somehow managed to miss, despite being brought up on the Wonderful World of Disney. This is a sweet little piece of fluff about a disabled UFO piloted by a cute little Abyssinian named Zunar-J-5/9 Doric-4-7 (Jake for short)
In a quest to repair his ship Jake seeks the help of some new found human friends to obtain $120,000 worth of gold. Using Jake’s telekinetic power they earn the money to betting on assorted games, while avoiding the military and criminal organizations. (I have to say considering all of the moral hurdles they cross cheating at sports, breaking into military bases and paralyzing base security why didn’t they just steal the gold)
All in all this was a fun comedy with a who’s who in seventies television comedy with Harry Morgan stealing the show as a blustering general.