Friday, May 16, 2014



Story By: G. H. HARDING
Alice Cooper

CLASSIC FORD? --- Alcon Entertainment has an offer out to Harrison Ford to reprise his role of Rick Deckard in its Ridley Scott-directed sequel to Blade Runner. Original screenwriter Hampton Fancher and Michael Green are writing the new one, which takes place several decades after the conclusion of the 1982 original.

Alcon actually sent a press release out that it offered the role to Ford (which is unusual in itself), and Ford gave an interview recently saying he was anxious to see the script. He has expressed interest in reprising the role in the past, but no deal is set as he has yet to read the script.

If Ford agrees to the script, this is the second audience-pleasing role the actor would be stepping into. He is also set in the next installment of the Star Wars franchise as the actor is currently readying to reprise his role as Han Solo with Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill in Star Wars: Episode VII for filmmaker J.J. Abrams, which Disney plans to release December 18, 2015. Abrams is directing, co-writing the script with Lawrence Kasdan.

Blade Runner is without a doubt one of my all-time favorites movies; from Ford’s portrayal of Deckard, to Daryl Hannah;Sean Young and Edward James Olmos in just spectacular performances. Besides the visuals, which seem to have inspired the look of every single sci-fi epic after, the music by Vangelis was just so visionary.

The story centered on the Deckard-character having to dispose of four replicators (advanced designed robots); with Young portraying the last of them. Yet the more Ford investigates, the more be becomes intrigued and involved with the Young character. The ending left the viewer thoroughly in the dark as to exactly what had happened; did Ford leave with the replicator, or destroy her.

Rutger Hauer as replicator Roy Batty gave just a sensational performance and the speech he gave (now termed the tears in rain speech) while Deckard was dangling from a rooftop was spell-binding.

The final form, altered from the scripted lines and much improvised by Hauer on the eve of filming, has entered popular culture as perhaps the most moving death soliloquy in cinematic history and is an often quoted piece of science fiction writing. Here’s a sample: I've... seen things you people wouldn't believe... [contemptuous laugh] Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. All those... moments... will be lost in time, like [small cough] tears... in... rain. Time... to die...”

The movie was adapted from a short-story by sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick, entitled Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. It was a ground-breaking film in every sense After the release in ‘82, Ford publicly criticized the film, but since its release it has become something of an American classic. I bet he will return.

ALICE POWER --- Eagle Rock has just announced the DVD, Blu-ray and Deluxe Limited Edition Boxed set release of the critically acclaimed Banger Films documentary Super Duper Alice Cooper on June 3.

Premiered at last month’s Tribeca Film Festival, Super Duper Alice Cooper is the first ever doc opera film, presented with a dizzying blend of documentary archive footage, animation, and rock opera. The film was also screened in theaters nationally in late April.

Super Duper Alice Cooper is the story of Vincent Furnier, a preacher’s son who struck fear into the hearts of parents everywhere as the ultimate rock star of the bizarre, Alice Cooper. Yet beyond the make-up, there is a richer, deeper story. Presented here is the twisted tale of a teenage Dr. Jekyll whose rock ‘n’ roll Mr. Hyde almost kills him.

Through the advent of Alice as front man of a rock band group of Phoenix misfits in the 60’s, to the hazy decadence of celebrity in the 70’s, to his triumphant comeback as 80’s glam metal godfather, the film reveals how Alice and Vincent battled for each other’s souls, and how these two opposite characters came to co-exist within one mind. Alice’s story is told not only by the man himself, but through exclusive interviews with members of the original Alice Cooper band, Elton John, Iggy Pop, John Lydon, and Dee Snider.

The DVD and Blu-ray version of Super Duper Alice Cooper includes bonus deleted scenes, Alice Cooper interviews from the VH1 Classic series Metal Evolution, and additional rare footage. The Deluxe Edition features not only the full film on DVD and Blu-ray, but also a second DVD of previously unreleased concert footage from Montreal University in 1972, and a CD of Cooper’s performance at the 2009 Montreux Jazz Festival.

There’s no question that Cooper’s music dominated the 70’s and early-80’s; his songs “I’m Eighteen” and “School’s Out” were huge, but the internal struggles of the original band are just now coming to light. Various members felt they were not getting their proper due.

Originating in Phoenix in the late 1960's after Furnier moved from Detroit, Alice Cooper was originally a band consisting of Furnier on vocals and harmonica, lead guitarist Glen Buxton, Michael Bruce on rhythm guitar, Dennis Dunaway on bass guitar, and drummer Neal Smith. The original Alice Cooper band broke into the international music mainstream with the 1971 hit "I'm Eighteen" from the album Love It to Death, which was followed by the even bigger single "School's Out" in 1972. The band reached their commercial peak with the 1973 album Billion Dollar Babies.

Furnier adopted the band's name as his own name in the 1970’s and began a solo career with the 1975 concept album Welcome to My Nightmare. In 2011 he released Welcome 2 My Nightmare, his 19th album as a solo artist, and his 26th album in total. Expanding from his Detroit rock roots, in his career Cooper has experimented with a number of musical styles, including conceptual rock, art rock, hard rock, heavy metal, new wave, pop rock, experimental rock and industrial rock.

In 2011, the original Alice Cooper band was inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and he was also a member of the Hollywood Vampires, along with Micky Dolenz, Keith Moon, Harry Nilsson, Bernie Taupin and John Lennon.

CLOSING NOTES --- Speaking of Eagle Rock, I've been watching their recent release of Toto's 35th Anniversary Concert and it is just superb. The band has never sounded better and lead-writer/keyboardist David Paich is just sensation. Watching guitarist Steve Lukather is amazing too. Check out their version of "Hold The Line".

We'd be remiss in not noting Barbara Walter's last day on TV today, on her show The View. From reports, besides all of the original hosts of the show appearing, Hillary Clinton and Oprah also showed, as well as actor Michael Douglas. In her five decades of broadcasting journalism, she stood heads-and-tails ahead, not to mention championing every single female broadcaster since. PR-pasha David Salidor, who got her caricature up at Palm West on 50th Street, says, "I'll never forget when she came in for the final viewing with Cindy Adams ... she couldn't have been nicer." Salidor also had The Monkees on three years back, one of Davy Jones' last appearances, and says, the crew, Barbara, Whoopi ... "Were just so supportive. It was actually one of the group's best performances ever. They'll never be another like Barbara ... that's for sure!" Good luck to her! ...

WFAN's Zach Martin interviewed Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page the other day for Westwood One at a secret location in Manhattan ...

That Jay Z, Beyonce and Solange moment in the New York-Standard hotel elevator; Boy, I'd never want to get into a ring with her. One rather tasteless comment: One of her biggest hits ever ...

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