July/August 1984

Ghostbusters, Another Country, midsection on Los Angeles’ lost history, Sergio Leone interview, blockbuster roundup with Indiana Jones and Gremlins, John Huston interview

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Issue Details

TREASONS OF THE HEART
Where are the spies of yesteryear? For Brits and Americans, right in their backyard. Traitormania has hit the big and small screens on both sides of the Atlantic. Guy Burgess, Kim Philby, and other double agents have won rueful sympathy in such pictures as Another Country and An Englishmen Abroad. Harlan Kennedy offers some sharp insights on the phenomenon.

LEONE’S PIPE DREAM
Hailed as a masterpiece in Europe, scored as a fiasco in the U.S., Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in America is up for grabs in the court of opinion. Mary Corliss has hers, and it might surprise you: that the U.S. version is better than Leone’s prime cut. The director himself is a delight in a rare interview, by Elaine Lomenzo.

MIDSECTION: LOST HOLLYWOOD
Los Angeles is a city so busy blueprinting America’s future that it has blotted out its own past. No monuments or museums mark the achievements of the pioneer film factories; but there is history, artistry, glamour in them. Mark Mancini (with the help of researcher Mark Wanamaker and photographer Suzanne Tenner) tells the sad, stirring story of a city and the industry that created it.

BLOCKBUSTERS
Harlan Jacobson on two summer smashes. He pegs Indiana Jones as a derailed episode of Father Knows Best. He reads Gremlins as a hate letter to its audience. And he likes Ghostbusters. So he’s wrong; he still writes like a wet dream. Richard Edland makes bad dreams come true on film, like the goofy antibodies in Ghostbusters. Joanna Lipari gets the SPFX story.

JOURNALS
Jim Verniere goes on (and off) the set of Disney’s high-tech Oz.

BRIEF ENCOUNTERS
On movie screens and billboards, girls just wanna have fun—in skivvies. Marcia Pally scrutinizes the trend.

TELEPHONES
From Sorry, Wrong Number to Terms of Endearment, films have used phones to reach out and touch someone. A critical garland from David Thomson.

‘STREETS OF FIRE’
Forget the movie, buy the record—Born in the USA. By David Chute.

MAKING ‘UNDER THE VOLCANO’
Todd McCarthy talks with director John Huston, producer Wieland Schulz-Keil, and writer Guy Gallo.

MIFUNE CONQUERS AMERICA
And Peter Grilli is with him.

THE MANKIEWICZ CLAN
Even Hollywood serfs—like screenwriters—can produce dynasties. Consider Joe and Herman and Tom et al. By Stephen Farber and Mark Green.

BOOKS: ‘MR. HOLLYWOOD’
An appreciation by Richard Schickel.

BACK PAGE: QUIZ #8