47 FILMS: 2. OUTLAND
47 Films to see before you’re murdered in your dreams continues with Sean Connery Sci-Fi Outland.
A lone space Marshal, O’Neill (Sean Connery) on a moon of Jupiter – although set on Io the film was actually filmed on Ganymede for budgetary reasons – has to contend with a corrupt mining company which would rather see its workers die one by one raving in the depths of drug induced psychosis than see its quotas suffer. When O’Neill won’t let go of the investigation and his family desert him, mining boss Wizard (Peter Boyle) calls in some hired guns to off the plucky law man.
Having made the wonderful Capricorn One, Peter Hyams garned a reputation for himself as having balls of 100% brass in 1984 when he made a sequel to 2001: a Space Odyssey. Outland is a work of fantastic gritty and chunky science fiction and carries on from Alien the idea of a proletarian space age, when those in the suits will be the miners and the Parkers of the world and not the preppy military types. Connery’s glum O’Neill – heaven forfend he should ever play Scottish – is a guardian of an unappreciative working man. The violence is brutal; the setting is perfect with a real world of drab clunkiness and the sense of dread as the killers approach palpable. In a swipe at Alien (the balls on this man), the poster line for the film was ‘Even in Space Man’s worst enemy is Man’.
Outland was so successful it was later remade in black and white as a Western and renamed High Noon and a new Outland remake is currently in production.
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