“Mm, I see. So, Jane, what you do here, in effect, is count boners.” Will one hand be enough? You know. The fingers. Will the fingers on one hand be enough for counting? Join your faithful Grue-Crew – Chad Hunt, Bill Mulligan, Crystal Cleveland, and Jeff Mohr – as they dream a little dream with you and the star-packed cast in Dreamscape (1984).
Decades of Horror 1980s
Episode 202 – Dreamscape (1984)
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A man who can enter and manipulate people’s dreams is recruited by a government agency to help cure the President of the United States of his nightmares about nuclear war but stumbles upon an assassination plot.IMDb
- Director: Joseph Ruben
- Writers: David Loughery, Chuck Russell, Joseph Ruben (screenplay); David Loughery (story)
- Music: Maurice Jarre
- Cinematography: Brian Tufano
- Film Editing: Richard Halsey
- Special Effects & Makeup:
- Visual Effects:
- Jim Aupperle (stop-motion visual effects supervisor)
- James Belohovek (miniature constructor)
- Beverly Bernacki (optical lineup)
- Stephen Czerkas (stop-motion crew & snakeman model builder) (uncredited)
- Linda Drake (stop-motion crew) (as Linda Obalil)
- Ernest Farino (stop-motion crew) (as Ernest D. Farino)
- Rocco Gioffre (matte artist)
- James Hagedorn (optical printer operator) (as James R. Hagedorn)
- Pete Kozachik (stop-motion crew)
- Peter Kuran (visual effects creator)
- Kevin Kutchaver (special photography)
- Dennis Pies (dream tunnel effects created by)
- R.J. Robertson (rotoscope animation)
- Paul Sheppeck (additional matte paintings)
- Susan Turner (miniature supervisor) (as Susan K. Turner)
- Dennis Quaid as Alex Gardner
- Max von Sydow as Dr. Paul Novotny
- Christopher Plummer as Bob Blair
- David Patrick Kelly as Tommy Ray Glatman
- Kate Capshaw as Jane DeVries
- George Wendt as Charlie Prince
- Eddie Albert as The President
- Peter Jason as Roy Babcock
- Chris Mulkey as Gary Finch
- Larry Gelman as Mr. Webber
- Cory Yothers as Buddy
- Redmond Gleeson as Snead
- Jana Taylor as Mrs. Webber
Dreamscape is a Decades of Horror 1980s double-tap, first covered in episode 100 by Doc Rotten, Christopher G. Moore, and Thomas Mariani. This time around, Dreamscape is Bill’s pick and he was sucked in by the glowing nunchucks in ads. Although the cast is great, it doesn’t hold up as much as Bill wishes it did and it is far too obvious who the bad guys are. Having said that, it is still a very 80s movie and he would like to see it remade. Chad thought Dreamscape was great at the time and he still enjoys it even though not everything holds up. In his view, it was hard to pull off everything they were trying to incorporate with the budget they had to work with it. On the other hand, Crystal thinks Dreamscape holds up just fine and she rewatches frequently. Even so, she too would like to see it remade. Jeff still really, really likes it and loves the melding of stop motion animation and other practical effects. He doesn’t appreciate Dennis Quaid’s girl-killer smile but otherwise thinks the cast is incredible.
Regardless of whether or not you’re in the “holds up” or “doesn’t hold up” camps, Dreamscape is a fun 80s flick that tries hard to be a lot of things. At the time of this writing, it’s available to stream from Tubi and Kanopy, and on physical media as a Collector’s Edition Blu-ray from Shout Factory.
Every two weeks, Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror 1980s podcast will cover another horror film from the 1980s. The next episode’s film, chosen by Crystal, will be Howling II: … Your Sister Is a Werewolf (1985), also known as Howling II: Stirba – Werewolf Bitch. Discussing this masterpiece should be howling good fun. …sorry.
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