Saturday, April 16, 2011

THE ΩMEGA MAN - Ron Grainer-Country Joe and the Fish-Max Steiner-Arlo Guthrie - "Armageddon Time" (1971)

For a big-time film production, "The Ωmega Man" is shockingly not really that great! I'll take the Vincent Price version of Richard Matheson's "I Am Legend" over this or the Will Smith version any day, and then some, and I'm a big Charlton Heston fan!

The best way I can describe it is that this is the way Charlton Heston looks like he feels about the whole production! Just not real sure!!

Crusin' through a deserted city with "Theme For A Summer Place" playing on the 8-track, and turned up to 10! "Theme For A Summer Place" was originally titled the "Molly And Johnny Theme" and was written by mega composer Max Steiner, and I don't know if that's the Percy Faith or the Hugo Winterhalter version! "The Ωmega Man" is kind of like a continuation of "Human Highway" if world destruction had happened biologically instead of nuculearly!

One of the main concepts of "The Ωmega Man" is that the future is full of perks if you're lucky enough to survive! If you run out of gas, do you take the wimpy route and call the Auto Club or Onstar, no, you just go get yourself a brand new Mustang, and drive it right off the showroom floor!

Got nothing better to do during the day, you can go down to the local theatre, and watch a movie! Here's a local theatre flyer, stains and all, from the early 70's donated by our pal, not Greg G, but Gregg G, from back in the day when double features were still standard fare!!

Roll that film, and pick yourself out the best seat in the house!

If you only had one movie to watch, I'd say that "Woodstock" was a pretty good choice! One thing I really do like about "The Ωmega Man" is that it gives me a chance to mention another one of our favorite bands of all time, "Country Joe and the Fish" and "a little something we like to call rock n'soul music." From the first time I heard those mystic organ swells of "Sweet Lorraine" I was hooked! The fact that some of the world's greatest and most influential musicians like Country Joe and the Fish, the Steve Miller band, Love, Link Wray, and The Seeds etc, are not in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and some members like Michael Jackson and John Lennon have been inducted twice, just proves what a bogus outfit it really is!

When the movie's over, it's time to hightail it back to the swingin' bachelor pad before all the freaks come out at night!!

Now here, Charlton looks like he means business, and it makes for a nice portrait of The Man!!

More perks of being the Last Man on Earth! Good food, good drink, and good music! Now if that damn phone would just quit ringing!!! The rest of the music in the soundtrack was composed by Ron Grainer who also wrote the theme for "The Prisoner" and "Dr. Who!" What a slacker!

That's Anthony(Dead Zone)Zerbe on the left, and Lincoln Kilpatrick on the right, as members of the nocturnal, and really pissed off "Family!" The Family's sole goal is to cleanse what's left of the world of scumbag's like Dr. Neville! Lincoln was another freak in the other Charlton Heston future flick, "Soylent Green!"

The Family's not into picking up litter, and they've got a catapult, and they are literally Hell bent on destroying the good doctor! I think The Family are mostly just jealous because Dr. Neville's got better stuff than them....... a high-powered rifle with a telescopic infrared sight!

Dr. Neville is starting to lose it just a bit while he's out on a shopping excursion!

He even thinks he sees a real person! Enter new character, Rosilind Cash as Lisa!

The doctor had a good thing going, nice pad and a swell wine cellar, but those diabolical Family bastards never give up, and it was only a matter of time until they slipped through his security system!

It's all about unions, you see, zombies and freaks can generally be dealt with on an individual basis, but when they get organized, they become a real threat!

You probably thought they were just trying to be cool, wearing their sunglasses at night, but here's the real reason why they don't like light in any form whatsoever!

Time to blow some stuff up!!

Dr. Neville meets up with Lisa again, and they escape together in the worst motorcyle chase scene I've seen lately! Even when they're moving, you can readily see that it's not Charlton Heston! Now I'm starting to wonder what else isn't real, maybe the whole movie is fake!

With Lisa back at the pad, the doc is rockin' it with a sound system that contains four speakers, an 8-track player, and a mixer! Get down!

There's some dumb romance between the doctor and Lisa, and then she too becomes infected, and then The Family really destroys the doctor's place for the last time!!

There can be no happy ending when the entire population gets wiped out not once, but twice! Three strikes and we're out!!!


Prof. Grewbeard said...

i have the soundtrack and it's awesome!

Christopher said...

where else you gonna see big Chuck Heston unspooling Country Joe and the Fish on the big screen all by his lonesome..

Toestubber said...

Well, it may not be highbrow enough for you, Doktor Ivanmonocle, but this movie will always have a special place in my heart due to innumerable afternoon syndicated TV viewings. It is a little bogged down in the social consciousness of the time, but I like the way they offset the hippie stuff by casting no-bullshit Heston as the protagonist. Plus, you get some interracial sexual desperation between him and Rosalind Cash. So taboo!

I think the diseased albino cult is amazing. Creepy, but human (and delusional) enough to be actually scary in spite of the poor action choreography. Did you notice the way the editor speeds up the film during certain moments like it's a Keystone comedy? It's kind of effective. The first appearance of the "brethren" comes with a jarring organ-sting on the soundtrack that always makes my little hairs stand up.

Omega Man, along with Beneath the Planet of the Apes, instilled in me a lifelong love/fear relationship with mutants.

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

Thanx for your detailed insight!

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