HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Dolce Vita, La
Pig
I Am Belmaya
Lodger, The
Show, The
Beta Test, The
Medium, The
John and the Hole
Survivalist, The
Ape Woman, The
Black Widow
Cop Secret
Dark Eyes of London, The
V/H/S/94
Fay Grim
Night of the Animated Dead
Freshman Year
Escape Room: Tournament of Champions
Anne at 13,000 Ft.
Even Mice Belong in Heaven
Death Screams
Freakscene: The Story of Dinosaur Jr.
Demonia
East, The
Mandabi
Seance
Green Knight, The
Beasts of No Nation
One of Our Aircraft is Missing
Picture Stories
Another Round
Tape, The
Limbo
Supernova
Man Who Sold His Skin, The
Sweetheart
No Man of God
Gaia
Oliver Sacks: His Own Life
Scenes with Beans
   
 
Newest Articles
Fable Fear: The Singing Ringing Tree on Blu-ray
Gunsight Eyes: The Sabata Trilogy on Blu-ray
Bloody Bastard Baby: The Monster/I Don't Want to Be Born on Blu-ray
Night of the Animated Dead: Director Jason Axinn Interview
The ParaPod: A Very British Ghost Hunt - Interview with Director/Star Ian Boldsworth
On the Right Track: Best of British Transport Films Vol. 2
The Guns of Nutty Joan: Johnny Guitar on Blu-ray
Intercourse Between Two Worlds: Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me/The Missing Pieces on Blu-ray
Enjoy the Silents: Early Universal Vol. 1 on Blu-ray
Masterful: The Servant on Blu-ray
70s Sitcom Dads: Bless This House and Father Dear Father on Blu-ray
Going Under: Deep Cover on Blu-ray
Child's Play: Children's Film Foundation Bumper Box Vol. 3 on DVD
Poetry and Motion: Great Noises That Fill the Air on DVD
Too Much to Bear: Prophecy on Blu-ray
Truth Kills: Blow Out on Blu-ray
A Monument to All the Bullshit in the World: 1970s Disaster Movies
Take Care with Peanuts: Interview with Melissa Menta (SVP of Marketing)
Silent is Golden: Futtocks End... and Other Short Stories on Blu-ray
Winner on Losers: West 11 on Blu-ray
Freewheelin' - Bob Dylan: Odds and Ends on Digital
Never Sleep: The Night of the Hunter on Blu-ray
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
   
 
  Cocoon Golden Oldies
Year: 1985
Director: Ron Howard
Stars: Don Ameche, Wilford Brimley, Hume Cronyn, Brian Dennehy, Jack Gilford, Steve Guttenberg, Maureen Stapleton, Jessica Tandy, Gwen Verdon, Herta Ware, Tahnee Welch, Barret Oliver, Linda Harrison, Tyrone Power Jr, Clint Howard, Charles Lampkin
Genre: Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 1 vote)
Review: In this Florida retirement home, the residents are living out their final years in peace, but some of them long for the days when they were younger and try to be as active as they can. Today another resident has died, and the trio of Art (Don Ameche), Ben (Wilford Brimley) and Joe (Hume Cronyn) are well aware of old age creeping up on them - Joe has just received a health diagnosis that means he might be away sooner rather than later. But that is not going to prevent him or his friends visiting the swimming pool at the empty mansion across the way, as they like to do often, an activity that just might change them forever...

But for good or for ill? That's a conundrum Cocoon has trouble making up its mind about in this sleeper hit from the mid-eighties that gave a bunch of old time movie stars a second chance in the limelight. It has a nice idea at its heart, but that heart was sugary and soppy, so that the issues emerging from it - that these elderly characters are rejuvenated by science fiction means - was effectively defused. This was a project started by Robert Zemeckis, yet for whatever reason he was fired early on and Ron Howard, then establishing himself away from sitcom Happy Days, was recruited to bring it to the screens.

Or was it Steven Spielberg who was hired? For Cocoon looks like a slavish imitation of not only his style but the kind of plotting his most successful movies had been welcomed the world over for. This ploy certainly worked, as there were many audiences who liked what they saw here, but just as many naysayers who were keen to point out that this was saccharine and lacking in a strong storyline. They may have been right, as watching the results it comes across as a movie a few rewrites away from a truly satisfying final draft, with the various developments happening along as if nobody could think of a smooth transition between them.

More than that, this finds trouble in getting the characters to do something interesting, or even novel, once its premise had been established. It heavily relied on the twinkly, sentimental charm of its oldtimers, who thankfully were more than up to the task: if you ever wished to see Don Ameche breakdancing then this was the film for you. But with the comedy slapped up on the screen with the same emphasis as the tragic business, it would hard to see this as anything but shamelessly manipulative if it were not for Ameche and company. Sadly, Steve Guttenberg's boat captain was surplus to requirements.

Indeed, Steve seems to be parachuted in from another movie, as before the ending where everyone meets up Cocoon is almost two stories running at once with only glancing familiarity with each other. Brian Dennehy is rather good as the enigmatic leader of the alien crew bringing up the pods of the title from the deep and depositing them in the swimming pool the three friends like to use, thereby rejuvenating them, and Tahnee Welch shows up as the love interest (another offspring of a more famous star, Tyrone Power Jr, is there too), but after a while screenwriter Tom Benedek obviously said, OK, we'll just recreate Close Encounters of the Third Kind for the finale. There is a measure of conflict when Jack Gilford says his friends are messing in a domain they were not meant to be in, yet while that doesn't convince neither does the development that sees the aliens offering to take the oldsters off into infinity. It's nice enough, but not half as polished as it should have been. Music by James Horner.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4007 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Jason Cook
Enoch Sneed
Andrew Pragasam
  Desbris M
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
   

 

Last Updated: