Author Topic: The True Story of the Lost Sci-Fi Movie 'Brainstorm,' Natalie Wood’s Last Film  (Read 419 times)

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Offline Frank Cannon

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https://www.popularmechanics.com/culture/movies/a25654064/sci-fi-movie-brainstorm-natalie-wood-final-film/



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Thirty-five years ago, a fantastic movie came out that starred four Hollywood legends, three of whom were Oscar winners. It was directed by one of the most important and influential visual artists in film history, and the plot foretold the invention of virtual reality decades ahead of its time. The script was written as a showcase for a new technology designed to change the way we see movies. One of the Hollywood legends died before the movie was finished, a mysterious death, and this ended up being her last movie—

 And you’ve never heard of it.

We’re guessing you’ve never heard of it, anyway. In writing this article, we asked several dozen people if they had. One guy said he might have maybe seen it, a long time ago.

It was called Brainstorm.

Anyone? No?

Brainstorm was supposed to be huge. The director—himself a three-time Oscar nominee—was Douglas Trumbull, a visual-effects genius who had already worked on some of the most monumental films of all time: as Stanley Kubrick’s special photographic effects supervisor on 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), and as visual effects supervisor on Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977), Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), and Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner (1982).

Brainstorm starred Christopher Walken, who two years earlier had won the best supporting actor Oscar for The Deer Hunter; Louise Fletcher, an Oscar winner for her unforgettable role as Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest; and Cliff Robertson, who had won a best-actor Oscar for Charly in 1968.

Offline Frank Cannon

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I remember seeing this years ago. I guess I wasn't stoned enough when I watched it because I don't recall being that excited about the movie.

Offline mountaineer

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... A week before filming began, Trumbull gathered much of the cast and some crew at the famed Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California, a retreat where, according to its website, “seekers” can “explore deeper spiritual possibilities…[and] forge new understandings of self and society.” The Brainstorm story has roots in the beliefs of Stanley Grof, a Czech psychiatrist who worked with Esalen and who was exploring the pursuit of altered mental states without the use of narcotics of pharmaceuticals. “The goal was to bring the cast together on a very deep emotional level,” Trumbull says. Grof’s hypertropic breathing work involved “looking at certain images, listening to certain kinds of music, and hyperventilating deliberately to over-oxygenate the brain. The idea was that this would bring out suppressed emotional material in the individual. Everyone tried it.”  ...

In the middle of the story, Fletcher’s character dies of a massive, minutes-long heart attack while alone in the lab. She has the presence of mind to record her death while wearing one of the headsets. For the rest of the film, Walken’s character tries desperately to replay the tape in an attempt to learn what death is like—against the demands of the corporate and military men who own the technology and are trying to stop him.  ...
No thanks, I wouldn't have been interested in that story line. Not my cup of tea (or genre).
"Because men have lost the objective basis of certainty of knowledge of the thing in which they are working, more and more I fear we are going to find them manipulating science according to their own sociological or political desires rather than standing upon concrete objectivity." Francis A. Schaeffer


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