[VIDEO REVIEW]For sci-fi writer Dick, the adaptions go onOpening July 26 is one of the biggest films of the summer, "Minority Report," a concoction of the star actor Tom Cruise and the star director Steven Spielberg. More than just big Hollywood names, however, the movie is the latest big-screen adaptation of a work of Philip K. Dick's.
Dick had a complicated persona, plagued by paranoia and drug addiction. Somehow his mental instability helped him to write some of the best and most creative science fiction ever produced. Most of his writing followed his general belief, "The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words."
"Blade Runner" (1982)
Directed by Ridley Scott. Starring Harrison Ford, Sean Young and Daryl Hannah
Based on Dick's "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?," the film is the most influential science fiction film of the last quarter-century, if only for its tone and cinematography.
Ford stars as a former policeman, brought out of retirement to track down five artificial humanoids, called "replicants," who have escaped to Earth.
These days, the director's cut of the film is the most widely available version. Lacking Ford's voice-overs and with a short but vital additional scene, it's by far the better version.
"Total Recall" (1990)
Directed by Paul Verhoeven. Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Sharon Stone
Both Scott and Verhoeven greatly changed Dick's source material. But while Scott went for understated psychology, Verhoeven went big and stupid.
Quaid (Schwarzenegger) is a construction worker in 2084, haunted by dreams of Mars. So he chooses to get a memory implant of being a secret agent who worked on Mars. While undergoing the procedure, however, the memory people discover Quaid already has hidden memories of the Red Planet. Based on the short story, "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale."
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