Capricorn One

  • Directors: Peter Hyams
  • Producers: Paul N Lazarus III
  • Writers: Peter Hyams
  • Genres: Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Elliott Gould, James Brolin, Brenda Vaccaro, Sam Waterston, O J Simpson, Hal Holbrook, Karen Black, Telly Savalas, David Huddleston, David Doyle, James Karen

The setting is the late 1970s, and the first manned mission to Mars is on the launch pad. NASA authorities including Dr. James Kelloway (Hal Holbrook) realize that a faulty life support system has doomed any chance of a successful flight, so for political and financial purposes they decide to fake the landing rather than cancel the mission.

Minutes before launch, the bewildered crew of Col. Brubaker (James Brolin), Lt. Col. Willis (Sam Waterston), and Cmdr. Walker (O. J. Simpson) are removed from the capsule and flown to an old abandoned United States Army Air Corps base deep within the desert. The televised launch proceeds on schedule, but the public is unaware that the spacecraft (Capricorn One) does not have a crew.

At the remote base, the astronauts are informed they will fake the television footage from Mars and it is their patriotic duty to participate. Initially they refuse, but authorities imply their careers and the lives of their families are at stake if they do not cooperate.

The astronauts remain in captivity for a period of several months and are filmed landing on Mars within a studio located at the base. The conspiracy is known to only a select few NASA officials, until alert technician Elliot Whittier (Robert Walden) stumbles across a bizarre technical anomaly i.e. television transmissions from Mars made by the crew are being received by ground control before the spacecraft telemetry arrives. He is confused by the anomaly and wishes to investigate further, but is told not to worry about it by his employer. Even so, Whittier feels sufficiently uneasy to share his concerns with journalist friend Robert Caulfield (Elliott Gould) at a local bar, but before Whittier can fully set out his concerns, he mysteriously disappears.

The film ends with Caulfield bringing Brubaker to the astronauts’ memorial service, exposing the conspiracy in dramatic fashion in front of dozens of witnesses and live national television.

Creepshow

  • Directors: George A Romero
  • Producers: Salah M Hassnein, Richard P Rubinstein
  • Writers: Short Stories Screenplay, Stephen King
  • Genres: Animation, Comedy, Fantasy, Horror, Sci-Fi, Thriller
  • Actors: Hal Holbrook, Adrienne Barbeau, Leslie Nielsen, Ted Danson, E G Marshall, Stephen King, Joe King, Viveca Lindfors, Fritz Weaver, Carrie Nye, Ed Harris, Jon Lormer, Tom Atkins, Don Keefer, Robert Harper

(First story, written by King expressly for the film)

(Second story, originally titled “Weeds”, adapted from a previously published short story written by King)

(Third story, written by King expressly for the film)

(Fourth story, adapted from a previously published short story)

(Fifth and final story, written by King expressly for the film)

All the President s Men

  • Directors: Alan J Pakula
  • Producers: Walter Coblenz
  • Writers: William Goldman, Based on book by, Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein
  • Genres: Drama, History, Thriller
  • Actors: Robert Redford, Dustin Hoffman, Jason Robards, Jack Warden, Hal Holbrook, Jane Alexander, Martin Balsam

The book, also titled All the President’s Men, was adapted for the screen by William Goldman. The story chronicles the Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporting of Woodward and Bernstein from their initial report on the Watergate break-in through to their revelation of the Nixon Administration’s corrupt campaign of sabotage against their political rivals. It relates the events behind the major stories the duo wrote for the Washington Post, naming some sources who had previously refused to be identified for their initial articles, notably Hugh Sloan. It also gives detailed accounts of Woodward’s secret meetings with his source ‘Deep Throat’ whose identity was kept secret for over 30 years. Only in 2005 was Deep Throat revealed to be former FBI Associate Director W. Mark Felt.

The Firm

  • Directors: Sydney Pollack
  • Producers: John Davis, Sydney Pollack, Scott Rudin
  • Writers: John Grisham, David Rabe, Robert Towne, David Rayfiel
  • Genres: Thriller, Drama
  • Actors: Tom Cruise, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Gene Hackman, Ed Harris, Holly Hunter, Hal Holbrook, David Strathairn

A new attorney, Mitch McDeere, is drawn into a seductive law firm that seems to have many secrets. When he finds out who they are representing and what price has been paid by others who have come across the truth, he risks it all to escape with his law license and his life.

Into the Wild

  • Directors: Sean Penn
  • Producers: Sean Penn, Art Linson
  • Writers: Jon Krakauer, Sean Penn
  • Genres: Adventure, Biography, Drama
  • Actors: Emile Hirsch, Marcia Gay Harden, William Hurt, Jena Malone, Catherine Keener, Vince Vaughn, Hal Holbrook, Kristen Stewart

Into the Wild recounts the life of Christopher McCandless, a real-life National Consortium for Academics and Sports (NCAS)|student-athlete at Emory University, as told by his sympathetic sister. In response to his parents, whom McCandless perceives as materialistic, manipulative, and domineering, McCandless destroys all of his credit cards and identification documents, donates $24,000 (nearly his entire savings) to Oxfam, and sets out on a off-road|cross-country drive in his well-used but reliable Datsun towards his ultimate goal: to travel alone to Alaska and experience its nature firsthand. Along the way, he abandons his automobile in the course of a flash flood, to hitchhike after burning the remainder of his dwindling cash supply. He acquires a Perception Sundance 12 open-water kayak and goes down the Colorado River, into Mexico, and later returns to America via freight train to Los Angeles. Taking a circuitous route, he encounters many unconventional individuals along the way, such as a group of hippies, a farm owner (Vince Vaughn), and a lonely leather worker (Hal Holbrook) who offers to adopt and be a grandfather to McCandless. McCandless purposefully trudges onward to his final destination, arriving in the wilds of Alaska nearly two years after his initial departure. He starts living in a “Magic Bus”, used as a shelter for moose hunters. McCandless finds joy in living off the land and begins to write a book of his adventures. As the spring thaw arrives and he seeks to return from the wild, McCandless is cut off from civilization by the torrents of a swelled river one of his few admitted fears is of water. As his food supply of small game dwindles, he resorts to eating indigenous plants. Although he consults a book that he brought along in order to identify edible plants in the wild, he confuses an edible and a poisonous variety, which shuts down his digestive system and causes him to starve to death. In his final hours, he continues to document his demise in a painful and dramatic denouement.