Thoughts on the 1981 Science fiction film Outland

BAYLOR

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Staring Sean Connery , Francis Sternhagen and Peter Boyle . Connery play a not very likable , hard-nosed ,dedicated to his calling of enforcing the law no matter the cost to his career or marriage both of which suffer as a result . In his absolute pursuit and bulldog like persistence of doing the right thing no matter what , he rubs people the wrong which has has resulted in him and his family being sent to worst possible assignments in the solar system including the hellhole that is the mines on the moon Io . On Io, there been there has been a rash miners going insane and killing themselves. The cause is a synthetic drug the miners are taking that enable them to work harder and be more productive ( which the company is happy about ) but eventually, it turns these men into dangerously violent and suicidal crazies. .O' Neil investigates and quickly finds out that the Company is in cahoots with the drug dealers. So with only one ally , Doctor Martin Lazarus ( Francis Sternhagen ) who identified the drug killing the miners ) he goes against the company . Further complicating things, his wife is threatening to leave him because she doesn't want their son to grow up going from one miserable place to another. She wants him to take any kind job that earth side. The head of mine Mark Sheppard ( Pater Boyle) who tried and failed to bribe him to look the way, decides to bring in some hired guns to deal with him. And other then the Doctor , no one not even his deputies will lift a finger too help him. Basically , this film turns into High Noon in a Space Helmet

Thought on this film ?
 
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Adequate summary, although I don't remember O'Neil's wife actually being present but somewhere else. Like Mars, maybe?
 
Adequate summary, although I don't remember O'Neil's wife actually being present but somewhere else. Like Mars, maybe?

She was him on Io.

Of all the character that Sean Connery I dislike this particular character . He's quite literally a righteous ass.
 
I think Outland was a very good and very underrated film. Connery is a flawed hero, which i think makes him a better hero.

The casting was great and i enjoyed the acting of the main characters, a lot. Good special effects, too.

I seem to remember someone of these forums recently said that this movie is set in the same universe as Alien.
 
I watched it recently. It feels like exactly what it is - a cowboy movie in space, specifically High Noon. The character of O'Neil though is closer to that of the policeman he played in 'Untouchables' than it is to that of Gary Cooper.

Is it a great film? No, but it is a good film, and a believable film.
 
I watched it recently. It feels like exactly what it is - a cowboy movie in space, specifically High Noon. The character of O'Neil though is closer to that of the policeman he played in 'Untouchables' than it is to that of Gary Cooper.

Is it a great film? No, but it is a good film, and a believable film.

Director Peter Hyams also gave us films like as Capricorn One and 2010 A Space Odyssey .

It got very mixed reviews when it came and thought wasn't a great hit, it wasn't flop either. It's s a good solid science fiction film with plenty of action . The film was well acted and the the characters and the situations they are all in are very believable.
 
I think Outland was a very good and very underrated film. Connery is a flawed hero, which i think makes him a better hero.

The casting was great and i enjoyed the acting of the main characters, a lot. Good special effects, too.

I seem to remember someone of these forums recently said that this movie is set in the same universe as Alien.

Connery's film character actually does make the film work .


It could well be set in the same Universe Alien but if so, it's an earlier time then Alien because thye appear not to have FLT ships .
 
It's a realistic movie because the characters in it are believable. Most won't help the marshal because they are (quite rightly scared).

Connery himself plays a complicated character, and it's hard to know what to feel for him. He won't look the other way when drug dealing and murder is occurring on his patch, even though his life is in danger. But he seems to value his principles over the love and safety of his own family.

Yet he's a vulnerable character, not a hero. He asks for help from the miners stationed at the facility; he doesn't think he can do it on his own. But he's prepared to fight and to die rather than be threatened into looking the other way.

In most Hollywood movies, a rousing speech or his act of bravery would lead to the other miners realising the Marshal is on their side and joining him in his fight against the hitmen. But like I said, this is a realistic movie, and you genuinely don't know whether he's going to make it right to the very end.
 
So here's the thing: Sean Connery's character spends the entire movie doing stupid things just to keep the plot moving. Most of the stupid things involve being unable to stop two of the 'best' assassins in the system (he knows they are coming and knows who they are) from entering a facility which involves going through an airlock. "Okay you two. Put down the guns. Take all off your clothes and put on the handcuffs - or I vent the lock. Next! "
But it doesn't really matter that he managed to fluff that because the hitmen turn out to be so ****ing stupid they shoot out the huge windows of a pressurised greenhouse while they are inside it. ()It's about the only thing they do manage to hit and it is literally the size of a barn. God knows what the second best hitmen in the system are like - probably too busy shooting their own faces off somewhere to take any calls.

I thought 2010 was bloody awful for similar 'just keeping the plot going' stupidities.

Capricorn One is dumb but fun.
 
So here's the thing: Sean Connery's character spends the entire movie doing stupid things just to keep the plot moving. Most of the stupid things involve being unable to stop two of the 'best' assassins in the system (he knows they are coming and knows who they are) from entering a facility which involves going through an airlock. "Okay you two. Put down the guns. Take all off your clothes and put on the handcuffs - or I vent the lock. Next! "
But it doesn't really matter that he managed to fluff that because the hitmen turn out to be so ****ing stupid they shoot out the huge windows of a pressurised greenhouse while they are inside it. ()It's about the only thing they do manage to hit and it is literally the size of a barn. God knows what the second best hitmen in the system are like - probably too busy shooting their own faces off somewhere to take any calls.

It did help that assassins weren't the brightest bulbs in the known universe . :)




I thought 2010 was bloody awful for similar 'just keeping the plot going' stupidities.
I absolutely love 2010 .I thought it a great follow up to Stanley Kubrick's film It was cool seeing Keir Dullea reprise his role as David Bowman and Hal 9000. getting chance to be a hero. :cool:





Capricorn One is dumb but fun.
This film has a totally silly premise but , yes, it's very entertaining stuff :cool:
 
There always has to be some responsibility from the viewer not to look for the cracks and through the plotholes in movies. They aren't perfect creations, and sacrifices have to be made with reality to move the plot forward.

The hitmen came to the station amongst a batch of other people and supplies. Marshal could have simply refused the shuttle landing permission, but I think he knew that any attempt to defer confrontation would only delay rather than prevent it.

By letting the hitmen onto the station, he not only pinpointed some of the most troublesome individuals, but had an opportunity to put them out of action for good, as well as having further evidence of criminal activity from those who employed them.

Marshal was on home turf, he had time to plan and prepare traps and killing grounds for the hitmen. It would also help expose any other undercover bad guys on the station who might help them. It put him at great risk, but at least this way he could face the danger head on and put a permanent stop to it; and as we have seen, facing danger head on whatever the risk was his preferred method of policing. This way he could leave the station relatively safely, and with less of a need to be constantly looking over his shoulder. An even more important aspect when you consider he will soon be accompanying his family.

As for their brains and shooting, again this goes back to accepting the movie for a movie. Bad guys in movies rarely are smarter than the good guy, and are notoriously bad shots. The inability of the bad guys make the good guy appear to be even better than he/she already is, and if the baddies were elite forces who were far superior to Marshal in terms of tactics and abilities, it wouldn't make for much of a story, as he would have been murdered within the first third of the movie.
 
I did like this film grittiness . And, it's one Connery's best acting performances and Kudos for Peter Boyle and Francis Sternhagen too. :cool:

I think that without Connery, this movie would have sunk without trace. Without his usual screen presence, and his ability to bring to life an otherwise flat character, it would have struggled to raise itself above mediocre. I think you mentioned earlier that you disliked the character? Again, getting the viewer to have an opinion on the character - rather than leaving them simply not caring either way - shows that he brought life to Marshal.

That's what a good actor does though, and why they get paid big bucks.

There are definite 'Alien' vibes in this movie as well. There are lots of similarities to the look of the locations and the uniforms, spacesuit and computer displays. Just like with Alien, the confined setting of the station/spacecraft could just as easily be an oil tig or oil tanker back on Earth. The stories are as much about isolation and corporations ability to abuse such situations for their own benefit as they are about space travel.
 
I like this film a lot, even though I've never rated Connery as an actor. He feels like one of the last of that old breed of "man's man" actors, who just stand there and say their lines like a rugged lump (see also John Wayne). But in this he's surprisingly decent, even if his role is quite standard.

It also includes a weird turn by Francis Sternhagen as a sarcastic doctor. I honestly can't tell if her acting is good or bad - it's definitely one or the other.

For me, the great thing is the look of the colony, with its miserable lunch halls, dodgy screens and sleeping blocks, and huge pieces of crude machinery. It looks as if it would smell like an old sock.

There's quite an overlap with the Aliens crew: the music and sets were by the same people, I gather. Also, the opening titles and the tagline are very Alien-ish. I don't think the same people own the IP to Alien and Outland, so Con-Am isn't an official part of the Alien world, but in my mind it's very much the same kind of blue-collar SF, where going to space is like working on an oil rig and the boss is always on the take.
 
I like this film a lot, even though I've never rated Connery as an actor. He feels like one of the last of that old breed of "man's man" actors, who just stand there and say their lines like a rugged lump (see also John Wayne). But in this he's surprisingly decent, even if his role is quite standard.
In my opinion, if you want to see Connery at his best, watch a movie called The Offence (1973).

While I mostly agree with your assessment of his acting, The Offence is (for me) his finest work by a long way.
 
There's quite an overlap with the Aliens crew

Sorry, this should have been Alien.

I've never heard of The Offence before. Maybe Connery just didn't take/get roles that allowed for much acting. He always seems very samey to me. That said, a lot of famous actors just end up doing the same kind of thing over and over.
 
I take it, then, that you have never seen Jason Stratham doing 'acting' .

He was the Hero in Uwe Bolls epic Sword and Sorcery Classic Dungeonsiege In the Name of the King.:D
 
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