Monday, September 17, 2012

Movie Tie-In: Eyewitness

Discovered that the movie tie-in / novelization section is still intact at Montclair Book Center.  My find for the day:

I like that the cover features completely different artwork than what was ultimately used to promote the film.  The face appears to be based on William Hurt's features.  I suspect this artwork was one of several designs that was intended to promote the film itself, but was bypassed in favor of this now-familiar campaign:

Now that I have the book in my hand, I notice the billing on the poster advising viewers to look out for the "Avon Paperback."


bill teck said...

Ned - I'd been meaning to comment on the other Eyewitness post, which was wonderful and brought back memories of an almost forgotten movie experience. I was really taken with Body Heat, as you were, and i caught up with Altered States at a free Midnight screening i snuck onto the UM campus for. It was a very William Hurt kinda year for me then.

I think i was 13 and i was taken bigtime with William Hurt. His cadence, appearance, the way he carried himself. I think i knew literally zero wasps in my neighborhood and he could not have seemed more exotic and cool.
I was watching about 5 movies a week in theatres at that point, just seeing everything that anyone would put out, and i think i was underwhelmed when i finally caught up with Eyewitness. I think it was the first Peter Yates movie i saw in the theatre and i expected more - but - there were moments that i found really affecting. I loved the class issues, i remember very distinctly a tv being carried by a guy on a motorcycle, the death of bill hurt's character's dog, Hurt cradling his dogs in his arms as the pooch was dying - and mostly i remember this really lovely shot - where Hurt imitates Sigourney Weaver as she rides a horse in Central Park. I had never been there either. That seemed like such a cool thing to do. Like a putz, i still do this on my bicycle when i see someone and wanna get their attention. Dork. i remember thinking the climax was contrived but yet there was a depth to the film in some fashion. Also... i to got the theatre late, so i never quite got with the plot. 2 films for $1.50, 2nd run. I wish i could remember what it had been paired with. i need to revisit this one.
As always, thanks for making me think back - this time to a simple summer Friday night at the movies, a world of all kinds of things i knew nothing about.

Ned Merrill said...

Priceless remembrance, as usual, Bill. You hit on a lot of the things I really like about EYEWITNESS and your memory of those little details is impressive. The death of Hurt's pooch is really moving; also the relationship between Hurt and his dad (the great Kenneth McMillan) even though they only have a couple scenes together.

This is the kind of small-scale, character-driven drama that I so miss. I know they've pretty much migrated to the small screen, but I don't get the same thrill from that as I do from seeing a similar story told in under 2 hours in a dark theater in widescreen with feature film production values, rather than stretched out to a season or more of a tv series.