On Movies: Reflections on Films, Life, and the Passage of Time

Photo by Jordan Benton on Pexels.com

“Four days will quickly steep themselves in nights;

Four nights will quickly dream away the time.” ― William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream

The passage of time, ‘tis a quirky thing.

This weekend I purchased the Blu-ray of writer-director Lawrence Kasdan’s Body Heat, a modern take on film noir classics a la Double Indemnity and The Postman Rings Twice set in 1980s Florida during a heat wave. Famous for introducing Kathleen Turner as one of the sexiest female actors of the time and for its (tastefully done) erotic scenes, Body Heat was Lawrence Kasdan’s directorial debut and proved that he was more than a screenwriter-for-hire.[1]

Although large amounts of Body Heat were filmed in Florida (the movie was set there during a heat wave), it was extremely cold in the Sunshine State during production. To prevent water vapor from appearing on camera during filming, the actors had to put ice cubes in their mouths before delivering their lines. Photo Credit: (C) 1981 Warner Bros. Pictures

Interestingly, I discovered – after I bought the Blu-ray on Amazon for an amazingly low $9.99 – that I ordered Body Heat exactly 40 years after its theatrical release.

(Talk about serendipity….)

I dimly remember that Body Heat had been out in theaters in 1981; it was mentioned briefly in the brief authors’ bio in The Empire Strikes Back Notebook, a Ballantine Books paperback published in November of 1980 that presented Kasdan’s screenplay with selected storyboards and commentary by the writer, director Irvin Kershner, and producer George Lucas. But I had forgotten that Body Heat was out in theaters only two and a half months after Raiders of the Lost Ark premiered.

So, not only had I purchased Body Heat on its anniversary, but the movie was a contemporary of the iconic first entry of the Indiana Jones series.

My mind was blown.

Body Heat is 40…freakin’….years…old[2].

This, of course, got me started on the whole “Wow, time flies” thing.

For funsies, let’s take stock to see how old some of my favorite films – released in my lifetime – are (as of August 30, 2021) today.

  1. Star Wars (1977): 44 years
  2. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981): 40 years
  3. Superman (1978): 43 years
  4. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982): 39 years
  5. When Harry Met Sally…(1989): 32 years
  6. The Empire Strikes Back (1980): 41 years
  7. Apocalypse Now (1979): 42 years
  8. E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial (1982): 39 years
  9. Jaws (1975): 46  years
  10. The Hunt for Red October (1990): 31 years
  11. The Great Escape (1963): 58 years
  12. Summer of ’42 (1971): 50 years
  13. Red Dawn (1984): 37 years
  14. A Bridge Too Far (1977): 44 years
  15. Apollo 13 (1995): 26 years
  16. Stand by Me (1986): 35 years
  17. Working Girl (1988): 33 years
  18. Saving Private Ryan (1998): 23 years
  19. American Graffiti (1973): 48 years
  20. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977): 44 years
  21. Air Force One (1997): 24 years
  22. The Terminator (1984): 37 years
  23. Zulu (1964): 57 years
  24. Titanic (1997): 24 years
  25. Witness (1985): 36 years[3]

“I blinked my eyes

and in an instant,

decades had passed.” ― John Mark Green, Taste the Wild Wonder: Poems

[1] Prior to Body Heat, Kasdan had written the definitive screenplay for Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, as well as the script for Raiders of the Lost Ark, both of which were produced by George Lucas.

[2] And, until I purchased it this past weekend, I had not watched it.

[3] This is not a “ranked” list. I chose the titles more or less randomly. I also limited the scope of the selection to movies released within my lifetime.

Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

2 thoughts on “On Movies: Reflections on Films, Life, and the Passage of Time

  1. I tend not to feel old until I look at Star Wars and figure the difference between today and when Star Wars was released is greater than the difference between when Star Wars and The Wizard of Oz or Gone With the Wind was released.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: