John Carpenter, legendary filmmaker and composer celebrates his 70th birthday. Born January 16, 1948, in New York, John knew at an early age that his passion was in the visual arts.
After high school, he enrolled at the University of Southern California where he developed his first award-winning project Resurrection of Billy Bronco in 1970. While still at USC John Carpenter teamed up with Dan O’Bannon and created their first full-length film, Dark Star. On a minuscule budget, Carpenter worked as director/producer/writer/composer. Dark Star, a sci-fi comedy released in 1974 and eventually became a cult classic.
John Carpenter has a son, Cody, from his first marriage to actress Adrienne Barbeau (The Fog and Escape from New York). However, they divorced in 1984. Later in 1990, Carpenter married producer Sandy King (Ghost of Mars).
Here are some of my favorites.
Big Trouble in Little China
The film tells the story of Jack Burton, played by Kurt Russell (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2), who helps rescue his friend’s green-eyed fiancée, played by Kim Cattrall (Police Academy) from bandits in San Francisco’s Chinatown. They go into the mysterious underworld beneath Chinatown to face an ancient sorcerer, who needs to marry a woman with green eyes to release him from a centuries-old curse.
Action, fantasy, and love, what a triple threat! Even though the graphics aren’t fantastic, it’s more of an homage to my childhood. This is one of my ‘go to’ films, I can watch it a thousand time and not get bored.
Escape from L.A. 1996
August 23, 2000, an earthquake strikes Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley floods, and the area turns into an island from Malibu to Anaheim. Newly elected president declares L.A. to be sinful and punished by God. Anyone not conforming to the new laws he creates will be exiled to Los Angeles Island. Snake, an exiled rebel takes up the mission to end the madness.
I watched this for the first last year, as part of an action movie month. I was hooked from beginning to end. I love how the 90s portrayed the un-realistic dystopian-type future. Any action movie made in 80s/90s are a hit in my eyes.
John Carpenters, Vampires 1998
A team of vampire hunters led by Jack (James Woods, Casino) rids an abandoned house of vampires during a daylight raid. Later they are attacked by a master vampire called Valek (Thomas Ian Griffith, The Karate Kid Part II), who kills most of the team. The two remaining team members seek revenge.
The late 90s was when I really started to enjoy horror films and books, I couldn’t get enough. Based on the novel by John Steakley, it was one of few occasions when I didn’t read it first and I still haven’t today! I wouldn’t want to ruin my feelings for this film. Out of all movies by John Carpenter, this is my number one!
I’m sure you will all join me in wishing John Carpenter a very happy birthday.
What’s your favorite John Carpenter film? Let us know in the comments below!