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Author Topic: Blow Out (1981)
Nostalgic for the '80's
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I recently re-watched De Palma's Blow Out (1981), for the first time on Blu-ray. Amazing. This is truly an incredible film, and one of De Palma's best. I really liked the late '70's urban setting. The storyline & the night-time city scenes with the neon lights, shadowy alleys, seedy hotel rooms, etc. give the film an obvious neo-noir vibe/feel. The cover-up/conspiracy here reminded me slightly of the stories that we've all heard about the 1963 JFK murder in Dallas, and that was even referenced in this film (i.e., the Zapruder tape was mentioned at one point).

The emphasis on sound in the movie was fascinating re: the lead (Travolta) being a sound-man who supplied the sounds/screams/noises heard in films. As a huge movie buff, it was interesting to see this behind-the-scenes look at this technical aspect of film in general, in the context of another film.

One of my favorite scenes is towards the end, when the Travolta character defeats the serial killer (Lithgow), but is too late to save Nancy Allen - the sequence when he's looking down & the fireworks start up in the sky behind his head is fantastic - it's obvious he's standing in front of some kind of screen, but it still doesn't look that fake. Well-done effects here.

The film was obviously inspired by the infamous 1969 Chappaquid**** tragedy, but IRL while the politician survived & the passenger (a young woman) drowned, in this film the opposite occurred.

The film's story & title was also definitely inspired by one of my favorite UK films, the excellent Blow Up (1966), in which a photographer witnesses a possible murder while taking photographs; but, doesn't realize quite what happens....until he starts doing research & realizes something sinister may have occurred.

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I'm a huge fan of Brian De Palma films from the 70's & 80's. No one continued on with the vintage Alfred Hitchc0ck suspense as well as he did in that time period. Blow Out would rank as my 3rd favorite of his behind Carrie and Body Double.

[ 16. October 2018, 14:20: Message edited by: Pyro ]

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