Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Forgotten Movies: Seconds

This movie got a second life a few years back when it was briefly rereleased in arthouses. A very untypical outing for Rock Hudson and perhaps one of his best. It's a science fiction flick and a very good one.

When  man grows tired of his humdrum life, he is approached by a group called THE COMPANY who offer to give him a new one: new body, friends, wife, profession, etc. Rock plays the new character and his  new life at first seem like a good fit. Of course, things begin to go awry pretty quickly. This film was made in 1965 and directed by John Frankenheimer, based on a book by David Ely. I saw it not long ago and was impressed with its style and substance.



15 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

Patti - OK I'll admit; this one is a completely new one for me. It sounds like one of those movies that raises some really important and interesting questions...

Randy Johnson said...

A new one for me as well and one I definitely wouldn't mind seeing.

pattinase (abbott) said...

If you like science fiction, it is a definite must. Or questions about choices we make.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen this one in 45 years (OMG) but I do remember seeing it on first release and thinking Rock really can act (sometimes you had to wonder). I miss black & white movies.

Jeff M.

Todd Mason said...

Aside from the slightly overwrought Big Reveal (well, what did he expect?) this has been a long-time favorite of mine...and I've generally liked what I've read from David Ely, underappreciated these days to say the least, another guy like William Sambrot, Richard Condon or Richard Neely who didn't write too much "insider" crime fiction (or sf, or horror) but nonetheless were obviously One of Us.

Ed Gorman said...

A truly disturbing movie. Both Frankenheimer and surprise) Hudson at their best.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Yes, Rock could act when he was allowed to, I think. And I miss black and white too. They could definitely be more chilling for me.

Sergio (Tipping My Fedora) said...

One of my favourite John Frankenheimer films (and that's saying somthing as I'm a huge fan), beautifully shot with massive wide angle lenses by James Wong Howe and with a scary score by Jerry Goldsmith. Hudson is terrific and John Randloph equally superb as the older version of the main character. Great choice Patti.

Charles Gramlich said...

I don't know how I missed this one if it is SF.

kalaity.com said...

I like that one -- and not just for the orgy scene ;-) Makes a great double feature with that Roger Moore movie I'm not going to remember the name of... [one google search later] The Man Who Haunted Himself. Fun!

pattinase (abbott) said...

Gosh, I don't remember the orgy scene.

Yvette said...

I saw this years ago but I remember not liking it as much upon re-viewing it later. At first I was taken with Rock Hudson playing such an unglamorous part and for doing something so different.

Later I saw it as a stunt.

It's not a movie I'd want to watch again.

But I still enjoyed reading about it, Patti.

Ron Scheer said...

I remember not wanting to see this movie when it was new because it looked too disturbing (to borrow Ed Gorman's apt word). The word "Seconds" also makes me think of mashed potatoes and fried chicken...Clips of it, though, show the cinematography and editing to be breathtaking. In a category with SEANCE ON A WET AFTERNOON.

Todd Mason said...

James Wong Howe cinematography, Ron. Nuff said. (Or recall the only thing about HUD that rivals Patricia Neal.)

Patti, the orgy sequence is the site of the Big Reveal (appropriately enough). The protag, of course, was Not digging it.


Mike Dennis said...

Cranial drill...