Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Science Fiction Tear Jerkers

From IO9 is a list of science fiction themed movies or tv shows, designed to get the waterworks going. Is the list definitive or can you add or would you remove a listing?

WALL*E
THE IRON GIANT
STARMAN
LOST: "The Constant"
BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER: "The Gift"
E.T.: THE EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL
CHARLY (Keys - Flowers for Algernon)
KING KONG
STAR TREK: "City on the Edge of Forever"
SERENITY
EDWARD SCISSORHANDS
DOCTOR WHO: "Father's Day"
WINGS OF DESIRE (inspiration for the remake City of Angels)
STAR TREK II: THE WRATH OF KHAN
DOCTOR WHO: "Doomsday"

Ok, where is Testament? the William Devaine, Jane Alexander movie about a post nuclear war that will rip you a new one? The movie Moon has its' moments, One the Beach? Damn I would put these up there before I would BUFFY! WTF

Suggestions?

14 comments:

Marc Colten said...

Some years ago a SF anthology show did "The Cold Equations". I had a bad feeling all the way through - not because I remembered how the story ended but because of TV's insistence on happy endings. The same series had done "The Star" and completely screwed it up. Not this time. They followed the story right through to the gut-wrenching ending. Surprised me.

Anonymous said...

Where is "Silent Running" on the list? The little robot drifting off into space watering the seedling trees in the last forest to a Joan Baez song while Bruce Dern holds hands with the injured robot & blows himself up to let them get away - gets me every time.

Beam Me Up said...

Great call Marc...just watched it. Pretty damn hard.

Beam Me Up said...

Anon
I was going to list is as a WTF where is Silent Running...the ending where the dome is just continuing along with the droid "maintaining the garden" was hard to take. You're dead on...No Silent Running but Buffy!!!! the list does have some serious holes and brain dead submissions!

blizno said...

BMU and Anon, have you seen that Buffy episode? I'm getting wet-eyed just thinking about it.
Don't dismiss Buffy. It had valley-speaking teens but it was no empty-headed romp. "The Body", where Buffy discovers her dead mother and spends the first half hour going through shock, denial and grief, was devastating.
I agree about Silent Running.
I read The Cold Equations eons ago. It was nigh perfect sci-fi. Lots of technical space stuff going on and also the most intimate of human drama.

Beam Me Up said...

Blizno
Oh I have seen the episode. Yes, I watched almost all the episodes. I wasn't so much dismissing as questioning is this episode so much better that Silent Running doesn't even make the list?

blizno said...

Gotcha.
I can't think of many sci-fi movies more deserving of the tear-jerker prize than Silent Running. Can't think of any, come to think of it.

I wouldn't call Buffy science fiction anyway. I'd call it horror with plenty of comedy mixed in.

Beam Me Up said...

Blizno
Crap! I should have known I was being played! lmao I bow to my master.

blizno said...

My "gotcha" meant "I get you" = "I understand". I did not mean to play anyone.
I was serious. I love Buffy and think that a few of the episodes stretched TV beyond anything done before. I also love Silent Running and agree that it belongs in the list. At or near the top.

Anonymous said...

"Silent Running" is an excellent choice for number one on Tragedy Scale. I haven't seen that in 20 or 30 years, but it is an unforgettable film. I would add the B5 episode "Sleeping in Light," the mood of which is enhanced by Christopher Frank's mornful score. The Empath from ST TOS nearly brought me to tears (because I still wish I had that hour of my life back). As far as The City on the Edge of Forever, if that was Terry Garr instead of Joan Collins who played the peace activist, I would have been more upset with that careless driver. Footnote 1-Teri Garr has gone public with the information that she has MS. She probably wouldn't mind a note of encouragement from those of us who considered her our favorite TV guest star (maybe with a note that a contribution is being made to MS); Footnote 2-How many of you read the interview in which Harlan Ellison explained how he wanted to write The City of the Edge of Forever?

Beam Me Up said...

blizno
Oh no, don't take me wrong! I never though of it in a negative connotation at all. Sometimes I am amazed at how far I can be strung along before I figure it out. My brothers are masters at it. But I do appreciate the clarification. And I in no way want to imply that your comments are anything but part of a serious conversation. I appreciate and value your input believe me.

Paul

Beam Me Up said...

Anon
(damn I wish you would sign in with your name, your comments are great)
I have to admit that I really didn't "get" B5. At that time it was that or DS9. I know I have to get off my thumbs and really watch B5 because I maybe got a half dozen episodes in before I lost interest.

But Terri Garr in COTEOF? Hummmm I am a Garr fan from Assignment Earth. Her scattered gal friday off Mr. Seven and the cat were comic masterpiece. (the sidelong glance when the cat turned into a woman and back...wonderful!) As far a Joan Collins in TCOTEOF well, I had no clue who Collins was at that time and as such bought her soup kitchen peace-nic hook line and sinker. Did you know that Assignment Earth was supposed to be a series? Wouldn't that have been great?!

Anonymous said...

Sorry for posting as Anon. I usually post as Zack Allen. I am from West Chester, Pennsylvania, USA. I highly reccomend B5. Just as the first year of ST TNG, Year 1 is not as strong as the rest. Toward the end of year 1, it really takes off. It is truly a five year story. They threw the writer some curveballs such as making him change captains. An interesting contrast to ST. They have budgetary limitations (both in the B5 universe and in making the show), and they strikes, religious differences, and some increasingly disturbing political developments back home, which leads to some critical decisions on the space station. No Prime Directive. Feel free to start by watching the B5 movie "In the Beginning," but hold on the rest of the films until you get through the series. Also feel free to skip: "Infection," "Grail," "The Long Dark" and "Exo-Genesis." Watch for recurring role by Walter Koenig and a good guest appearance by Majel Barrett. Also by the guy that played the Klingon the joined forces with Kirk in fighting off some entity that attacked the Enterprise in TOS (The Geometry of Shadows - he was awesome). You will be treated to two Hugo award episodes - The Coming of Shadows and Severed Dreams. The show is not perfect and has its detractors, but I think it's well worth watching for any fan of Sci Fi TV.

Beam Me Up said...

Hi Zack!
Yeah I have to give B5 another try I guess.
Oh and as for Tear Jerkers, there are some pretty tough moments in the movie Moon. Anyone else seen that? Nay Yea?