26 Jul 2017

Movie News: Close Encounters of the Third Kind: Set for 40th Anniversary Re-Release


Steven Spielberg's path-breaking 1977 sci-fi alien movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind is set for a Sep 1 re-release at select US theaters. The trailer promises 4K picture quality and upgraded special effects.

My take, as an ardent admirer of the film, is to miss the full-length trailer and just watch the film. The teaser trailer above is an adequate surprise, without giving much away. The less you know the more you will enjoy this exceptional, unexpectedly moving motion picture.

Spielberg's Indian Following
Re-releases are not a trend in India. But I do hope that the film somehow finds its way to select Indian theaters too. Among Indian audiences, Close Encounters of the Third Kind is the least known of Spielberg's classic movies. Spielberg's fame in India can be attributed to the monster universal success of Jurassic Park (1993) and subsequent releases Saving Private Ryan (1998), Minority Report (2002), Catch Me If You Can (2002) and The Adventures of Tintin (2011).

But few here in India have seen the director's early works, notably the much-acclaimed road thriller Duel (1971), his first blockbuster Jaws (1975), arguably the best Indiana Jones movie Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) and that wonderfully endearing sci-fi/kids adventure E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982).

Re-releases and India
India did have a culture of re-releases in the 70's and 80's. But the coming of VHS tapes, CD's and advanced digital mediums, lead to rampant piracy. Unchecked piracy continues to affect footfalls at theaters across the country. Superior quality movie files are now downloaded into pen drives and watched at most households. Apart from satellite TV, legitimate online streaming services and mass availability of free Internet has further dampened movies-on-the-big-screen culture.

There's nothing like re-releases to bring genuine movie lovers to the cinema halls. At that note, hoping against hope to catch Close Encounters of the Third Kind at a theater near by or affordably far far away.

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