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Chillin’ with Logan’s Run

“When will this movie be over?”

Monday night I sat among three people who’ve never seen Logan’s Run. By the midpoint, they looked a bit like my Sweetie there. Fortunately, no one looked like Skuttle.

It blew my mind a bit. I watched that movie almost as soon as it came out and many, many times afterwards. I watched the TV series. I want to name a main character Jessica or Logan or both. It’s part of my quotable movie repertoire and I just can’t believe three of my friends hadn’t seen it.

What started the whole business was the question, “What’s a classic sci-fi movie?” We started naming a few and this one came up along with the astounding fact some hadn’t seen it.

The next question was obvious. “Is it good?”

Hmm.

I should have asked her to define good. Good lighting? Good dialogue? Good acting? Satisfying ending? What?

She didn’t ask for good. She asked for classic. Classics are classics for a reason, but it isn’t always because they’re good. Plan 9 From Outer Space is a classic, but no one would call it good. OK, maybe I should have said the original The Day the Earth Stood Still. If I had to limit classics to only the good ones, pickings would be mighty slim indeed.

I happen to like Logan’s Run, but I don’t know that it’s a good movie. It’s a weird premise fairly well delivered by everybody involved, but some might argue with me.

What makes a classic? Is it the lighting, dialogue, premise, or something more ephemeral? Is it sales numbers or longevity or how many people are willing to argue about it over dinner?

Classics have staying power. We hope it’s because they’re good, but for some of them it may just be they were the first ones to do it. Kudos to them.

Grace Bridges was the one asking the questions, and she’s looking for classic sci-fi she may not have seen. Anyone have some other suggestions for her? She’s still processing whether Logan’s Run fits her definition of classic or good so you don’t have to use that as your baseline.

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About Robynn Tolbert

Born in Kansas and born again at age six, Robynn wrote stories for her own amusement for the next thirty years. When a job as a foster care caseworker became too stressful and a career with a floral trade magazine became too comfortable, her thoughts turned to writing an actual book. Success led to success, and she completed a second novel and started her third. Robynn, aka Ranunculus Turtle, lives in Kansas with a clowder of cats, a patient dog and a garden.

3 comments on “Chillin’ with Logan’s Run

  1. Well, she hadn’t seen The Fifth Element when she was here, so I made her watch that. It’s a classic imho :).

    How about Bladerunner?

  2. We have Forbidden Planet on VHS. We also still have a working VHS player. If Grace wants, she can watch that and see if she thinks it’s classic.

    I also loved Logan’s Run. I liked the series better than the movie. Not that many people remember.

  3. Once at the newspaper, the restaurant reporter mentioned that his grandson was coming to visit. Someone asked his name. He said, “Logan.”

    The tech reporter asked, “Does he run?”

    I was the only one who laughed.

    ***

    Now, to actually answer your question: I think a film doesn’t have to be good to be a classic. Some, like Logan’s Run, may have been cutting edge in their time, but are kind of corny in retrospect. Original Star Trek and Doctor Who likewise.

    2001: A Space Odyssey is a classic, even though great whacking chunks of it are boring.

    One that’s both good and classic is the 1960 version of Time Machine.

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