THE FOG
1980, Rialto Pictures, 91 min, USA, Dir: John Carpenter

There’s atmosphere to burn in this spooky saga of bloodthirsty ghost pirates vengefully returning to decimate a sleepy California coastal town on the 100th anniversary of their shipwreck. Adrienne Barbeau is the spunky DJ sounding the alarm from her lighthouse-based radio station while the undead use the title mist as cover in their gory siege. With Jamie Lee Curtis.


THEY LIVE
1988, Universal, 87 min, USA, Dir: John Carpenter

Construction worker Roddy Piper learns that the world has been taken over by grinning skull-headed aliens who are permeating society with subliminal messages to mindlessly consume (sound like some corporations you know?). Glimpsing the truth with the aid of special sunglasses that strip away the phony layers of manufactured reality, he and fellow drifter Keith David join the underground to rebel against the mind control in this searingly satirical sci-fi jaunt, one of Carpenter’s best and wildest films. Co-starring Meg Foster.


ESCAPE FROM L.A.
1996, Paramount, 101 min, USA, Dir: John Carpenter

Kurt Russell returns as Snake Plissken, the U.S. government’s go-to guy for dangerous missions in the dystopian future – a time when Los Angeles has been turned into an island prison camp for people whom tyrannical Cliff Robertson has declared undesirable. Hiding among them is a revolutionary who’s stolen the president’s super weapon, and Plissken has 10 hours to retrieve the device before a virus claims his life. Carpenter’s sequel to cult favorite ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK is packed with wicked satire, lots of action and a colorful supporting cast including Steve Buscemi, Peter Fonda and Pam Grier.


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