Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Poltergeist ²

As I mentioned previously, I went to see Poltergeist a lot in the summer of 1982. There were a number of reasons for that, the first one being, I just loved the movie. That's probably the most important reason of all.

But it was also really easy to just go see it again and again. It was rated PG, so I could get in without a parent; the Northpoint was just one bus ride away (the 19 Polk) from where I lived; and school was out, most of my friends were away for the summer, and I was bored. It was better than sitting at home watching "The Brady Bunch" reruns all day, (which, don't get me wrong, I did a LOT).

One of the best things about the movie is the kids. Spielberg--aside from the travesty that was Short Round in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom--has a knack with child actors, and the kids in Poltergeist are cute without being cloying, especially the little girl...oh crap. What was her name in the movie again?

Right. Carol Anne!

But seriously, Heather O'Rourke really was a find; totally adorable, but also kind of spooky at times.

Sadly, she died young, and her death, combined with the murder of Dominique Dunne, (who played her teenage sister), and the subsequent deaths of some of the actors in the sequel, built up belief that there was some kind of "Poltergeist Curse" plaguing cast members. Except that, you know, two of those actors that died were already old or sick when they were cast in the sequel, so...

Perhaps the weirdest lingering effect of the early death of O'Rourke are the countless video tributes that you can find posted on YouTube today. Seriously, just search for "Heather O'Rourke tribute," and you've got yourself a day's worth of creepy entertainment.

I'll end this post with some more items from my Genre Book, this time just a couple of newspaper ads...

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