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(August 2002)

Karen Allen & Brooke Adams

Karen Allen and Brooke Adams are talented and beautiful actors who we don’t see enough of in feature films. Both have created powerful and memorable characters in movies that we here at The Toast love.Brooke AdamsKaren Allen

We first caught Karen Allen in that raunchy, but sweet and funny campus comedy of 1978, Animal House. Later, we (or at least, some of us) lusted after her during the sexy, funny and endearing strip poker scene in The Wanderers (1979). But she really made her mark as the feisty Marion Ravenwood; she who could drink any man under the table, knock Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) for a loop with a sock to the jaw and become charming and beguiling in a lovely couture dress given to her (for lustful and nefarious reasons) by that slimy, French-speaking, Nazi-loving villain, Rene Belloq (Paul Freeman).

Of course we’re talking about that great adventure movie Raiders of The Lost Ark (1981). Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood should have been in the sequels – she deserved it for the indelible character she created – and would have been if Steven Spielberg hadn’t been blinded by love and chose his future wife-to-be Kate Capshaw to star in Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom (1984). Maybe Karen will return to the role she deserves in the fourth Indy film.

Brooke Adams was in one the best movie remakes of all time. Remade titles are usually greatly inferior to their original. However, the 1978 version of Invasion of The Body Snatchers directed by Philip Kaufman (set AND filmed in San Francisco) was a wonderful remake that respected and honored the original 1956 version with cameos by the original director Don Siegel and the original star Kevin McCarthy.

Invasion of The Body SnatchersBrooke was the sweet center of the film. Her attractiveness and our emotional investment into her character, and the emotional support she provides the protagonist (played by Donald Sutherland) is skillfully played against us in one of the most unforgettable endings ever. Anyone who has seen the movie can never hear the traditional tune Amazing Grace again in quite the same way. Brooke Adams also brought this same tender vulnerability to The Dead Zone (1983) and Gas Food Lodging (1992) where she played a single mother raising two teenage daughters.

San Francisco
Speaking of movies set AND filmed in San Francisco. We’re very pleased with the response to our quest for San Francisco movies. Thank you one and all who kindly took the time to send us a list of your favorite San Francisco flicks. There was some overlap (we were pleasantly surprised to see how many times The Conversation (1974) showed up) and we’ve created a page for everyone to check. Maybe memories will be flicked and you all can come up with more titles. Take a look here – the titles in red are films we at The Toast can’t remember having seen. We’ve marked them because we don’t have personal knowledge that they are SET in The City of Saint Francis. They were definitely filmed there (we checked each one on the Internet Movie Database) but we don’t know if the story is in San Francisco.

New Stuff
Please check our new piece on Lilo and Stitch (2002). Submitted by our friend Valentina Alexander.

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