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RyanPC
01-10-2004, 11:07 PM
ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 *****

I found a video cassette of this John Carpenter classic for sale used (in widescreen, no less!) at a video store. Having always wanted to see it, naturally I jumped at the chance to buy it for a mere $2.99. I believe this was Carpenter's second film and based on the plot, I was expecting to like it very much. What I didn't expect was to find Carpenter's best film unfolding right in front of me! Although Halloween and The Thing are right behind it, overall this is his best. It has an awesome score, a great cast (including a pre-Halloween Nancy Loomis and Charles Cyphers), and loads of suspense.

When a young girl is killed, the grief-stricken father murders the gang leader who shot her. Terrified of the other gang members who are chasing him, the father runs into a police station for help. It just so happens that the station is being shut down-- the phone lines will be closed by morning and all the items are packed up in boxes. But the people inside aren't going anywhere. The gang attacks the place, attempting to kill everyone inside. The building's remaining occupants must find a way to get out without first being shot by the 50 or so men surrounding the place.

The whole concept of the film is brilliant and makes for an interesting and exciting way to spend an hour and a half. The screenplay, by Carpenter, has yet to be surpassed in terms of action and suspense-- the events all blend together like a delicious Carpenter milkshake and the result is perfection. The first few minutes are somewhat dull but once the action picks up it never stops until the very end.

What can I say? Assault on Precinct 13 is utterly fabulous and recommended to anyone who loves action and suspense films or who is a fan of Carpenter's work. You won't be disappointed.

Revoltor
01-11-2004, 08:29 AM
I thought Ghosts of Mars was better.

Sike!!

rhett
01-11-2004, 10:07 AM
I adore this movie. The modern update of RIO BRAVO, with its urban social and racial commentary makes for interesting viewing. The witty and unforgettable dialogue also makes repeat viewings a pleasure. Darwin Joston as Napoleon will always be THE coolest anti-hero ever captured on film. I still do not understand why nobody else ever capitalized on Joston's breezy wit and assured screen presence.

I've watched the movie about 12 times now, and I never tire of it. But the one thing I just can't figure out, is how to play that damn game of potatoes! The new DVD addresses the game, but never explains how one can actually win at it. Maybe Howard Hawks knew?

Katatonia
01-11-2004, 01:26 PM
Just watched the DVD for Assault On Precinct 13. It was a steal for $5 at Walgreens...new and factory sealed no less. Packed with special features, and a nice 2.35:1 anamorphic transfer.

It's definitely an underrated film. That one scene where the little girl gets shot is still very shocking to view.

It's too bad that Laurie Zimmer never acted much after Assault, she did a great job.

Revoltor
01-15-2004, 08:57 AM
How long ago did you get it at walgreens?
I recently noticed this puppy was being sold dirt cheap for no reason at all despite a much lauded special edition. Is this the same one that came out a few months ago?

Revoltor
01-15-2004, 09:01 AM
Okay, the new question is....do I want dreamscape?

http://www.deepdiscountdvd.com/dvd.cfm?itemID=IMA002155

Katatonia
01-15-2004, 01:12 PM
How long ago did you get it at walgreens?
I recently noticed this puppy was being sold dirt cheap for no reason at all despite a much lauded special edition. Is this the same one that came out a few months ago?

It was about a month ago probably. It is indeed the same Special Edition DVD with the Carpenter commentary, anamorphic widescreen, interviews, trailers, etc...

The only difference was on the back where the barcode would be was a white box that said "part of a set. not to be sold seperately" or something similar.

Katatonia
01-15-2004, 01:14 PM
Okay, the new question is....do I want dreamscape?

http://www.deepdiscountdvd.com/dvd.cfm?itemID=IMA002155

Good price. Dreamscape is a decent film, but the DVD is cut...the brief nude scene of Kate Capshaw has been edited out. Spielberg must have had something to do with that! haha :evil:

Revoltor
02-02-2004, 03:10 AM
Just got my double pack in the other day.

So the questions remain:

Why do they call him Napoleon?
What is the second thing you run away from?
Why did he kill "those" men?

Katatonia
02-02-2004, 09:25 AM
Just got my double pack in the other day.

So the questions remain:

Why do they call him Napoleon?
What is the second thing you run away from?
Why did he kill "those" men?

Good questions. I am also left wondering just why he was called Napoleon. Maybe because he acted like the criminal with sophistication? I guess John Carpenter would know for sure, I don't recall him mentioning it on the commentary track though.

RyanPC
03-27-2004, 08:03 PM
I sold my VHS and bought the SE DVD for $4.99 at Kmart. I'll tell you, it was worth every penny and would have still been worth it had it been priced at $15.99!

Zodiac-Mindwarp
03-27-2004, 08:24 PM
A truly outstanding movie. One of Carpenter's very best in my opinion.

Does anyone know if the commentary on the DVD is the same as the one on the laserdisc?

RyanPC
03-27-2004, 08:28 PM
A truly outstanding movie. One of Carpenter's very best in my opinion.

Does anyone know if the commentary on the DVD is the same as the one on the laserdisc?
Not sure, but I'd be willing to bet it is. I doubt they would make a new commentary just for the DVD. It's been done, but only in rare instances (i.e. Dawn of the Dead).

Zodiac-Mindwarp
03-27-2004, 08:34 PM
Thanks Ryan. That is what I thought also, and I figured that someone around here would have the definitive answer.