Friday, September 12, 2008

Logan's Run - Matte Paintings

Following my post about the Matte Painting's in Buck Rogers in the 25th Century here I thought I'd do a post about the matte painting's created by Matthew Yuricich for the 1976 film Logan's Run directed by Michael Anderson.
For the most part the film doesn't have many Matte's until we leaved the domed city, the City and the interior were realised by L.B. Abbott's miniature team. But once Logan and Jessica leave and arrive at the now ruined Washington D.C we are treat to some really super Matte Paintings.
We see the Lincoln Memorial overgrown by centuries of foliage as is Daniel Chester French's sculpture of Lincoln, seated on a throne.
We get to see The United States Congress Building covered in vine's and creepers both inside and out. Towards the end of the film Logan and Jessica return to the city with the Old Man along the beach and we see the only daytime shot of the domed city as a matte, the area where Logan and Jessica re enter the city, bottom middle picture is the "active pool" of the Water Gardens located in Ft. Worth, Texas, expanded by one of Yuricich's matte's. As I said in the Buck Roger's post, I think these old matte's appeal to me more in an artistic sort of way as opposed to a realistic way, there's no chance of ever being fooled by the majority of these matte's, but it's the fantastic worlds they convey that give them there charm to me. I don't know what it is about the Lincoln Memorial, but when I see that statue it always give me terrible flashbacks to Tim Burton's remake of Planet of the Apes and that horrendous ending.
Matthew Yuricich went on to create wonderful matte paintings for the films Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, Blade Runner, Ghostbusters, 2010: The Year We Make Contact and Die Hard amongst others.

9 comments:

Inchy said...

I'm hearing rumours of a Logan remake. Anyone got any light to shed on the story?

Andrew Glazebrook said...

Only that Joseph Kosinski who's directing Tron 2 is meant to be directing now, he's taken over from Bryan Singer. And it sticks close to the orignal books story by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson..


Book Synopsis BEWARE SPOILERS

In the world of 2116, a person's maximum age is strictly legislated: twenty-one years, to the day. When people reach this Lastday they report to a Sleepshop in which they are willingly executed. A person's age is revealed by their palm flower — a crystal embedded in the palm of their right hand that changes color every seven years, then turns black on Lastday.

Runners are those who refuse to report to a Sleepshop and attempt to avoid their fate by escaping to Sanctuary. Logan 3 is a Deep Sleep Operative (or Sandman) whose job is to terminate Runners using a special weapon called the Gun, an unusual revolver which can fire a number of different projectiles, and Omnite, a fictional hybrid martial arts style. On his own Lastday he becomes a Runner himself in an attempt to infiltrate an apparent underground railroad for runners seeking Sanctuary — a place where they can live freely in defiance of society's dictates. For most of the book, therefore, Logan is an antihero; however, his character develops a growing sympathy towards Runners and in the end he himself is truly a Runner.

Jessica 6, a contact Logan made after he chased her Runner brother Doyle 10 into Cathedral where he was killed by the vicious preteen "Cubs," helps him, despite her initial distrust of him. Francis, another Sandman and a friend of Logan, catches up with Logan and Jessica after they have managed to make it to the final staging area before Sanctuary. He reveals that he is actually the legendary Ballard, who has been helping arrange their escape. The 42-year-old Ballard is working from within the system; he believes that the computer that controls the city, buried beneath Crazy Horse Mountain, is beginning to malfunction, and that the society will die with it.

Sanctuary turns out to be an abandoned space colony near Mars. Logan and Jessica escape to the colony on a rocket that departs from a former space program launch site in Florida. Ballard remains to help others escape.

Inchy said...

I can think of far worse plots for Hollywood's current remake fixation to fixate upon. Sounds good.

paulhd said...

Lovely mattes, the Buck Rogers post was great, but I'm a sucker for nature wins imagery.
Richard Corben illustrated Nolan's The Small World of Lewis Stillman which was wonderful, I'd like to read more by him.

TimeWarden said...

Even though the plot of the '70s film bore little relation to the novel, they'll never be able to match Jenny Agutter's Jessica. She looked more stunning in "Logan's Run" than any other actress, in any movie, before or since!

mark said...

Hi AG

Just out of curiosity, where did you get the grabs from?

Are they from the new DVD re-release by any chance?

Andrew Glazebrook said...

Mark, I took the grabs from the Region 1 DVD I've had for a few years now.

mark said...

Thx for the info, AG.

I always really liked the original novella ( I still have my pristine film tie-in re-issue from when the film came out back in '76).

Actually, I do think - for once - Hollywood got it right by placing the age limit for Sleep higher at 30.

In retrospect, 21 (in the book) seems too fraught with logical problems with maintaining the infrastructure of a society. I say that despite the concept of supercomputers - such as the book's The Thinker - supposedly being able to regulate and control the world.

If they do another version (I won't say 'remake'), I hope they follow that logic, or maybe go for a halfway house.

25, anyone?

Moonwatcher said...

I've looked around 2nd hand bookshops here in York for a copy of the original novel but can't seem to find one. Most online are pretty pricey. Great post, those matte paintings have a really nice look to them, I'll have to watch the film again.