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Film Reviews

Just a few very brief reviews here. Sadly (if predictably), these movies tend to fail to capture the distinctive black humour of the original stories.

For more details of any of the below go to The Internet Movie Database.

CONDORMAN (1981) (based on the 1965 novel "The Game of X")

Well, it says this is based on 'The Game Of X' in the credits, but you wouldn't have guessed it. This is a much more obvious Bond spoof e.g. a car with lots of gadgets that isn't in the book. Harmless family entertainment.

The Prize Of PerilTHE PRIZE OF PERIL (1983) (based on the 1958 short story)

A French adaption of one of Sheckley's most influential short stories. A man enters a game show where he will win one million dollars if he can stay alive for 4 hours. Trouble is, the show employs loads of thugs who are trying to murder him, and the cameras are following his every move.

'The Prize Of Peril' is a good, if crude, satire of reality TV. Sadly, though it sticks fairly close to the plot of the original story, most of Sheckley's delicious black comedy has been lost.

Does this plot sound familiar? Neither the popular 'Running Man' or the more recent 'Series 7: The Contenders' give Sheckley any credit, despite having extremely similar plots.

FREEJACK (1992) (based on the 1958 novel "Immortality Inc.")

A very loose adaption of the novel, slaughtered by the critics. It's quite good fun actually, especially a cameo by Amanda Plummer as a nun with guns (not in the novel but it should have been!).