On July 6, we mourn the passing of industry great, Richard Donner. When talking about some of the most influential directors of all time, Richard Donner is a name that will always pop up. He has had a major impact in shaping pop culture for his films defined the particular genres they were in. He brought such larger than life concepts onto the screen and did it ever so gracefully. You favorite director’s favorite director probably might be Richard Donner. He made us believe that a man could fly and just was a major inspiration. Hollywood Fraternity Mourns Demise of Legendary Filmmaker Richard Donner.
I remember as a child I would watch his movies and I would want to pick up a camera and shoot a film of my own. As a film fan myself, Donner will be missed. Donner’s impeccable directing skills factored with the hope and optimism that his movies were filled with brought everyone immense joy. So to celebrate the life of this amazing legend, we are taking a look at five of his most iconic films.
The Omen (1976)
A Still from The Omen (1976)
A horror film directed by Richard Donner? Enough said. The Omen follows Damien Thorn, who after a series of mysterious events and violent deaths is revealed to be the prophesied Antichrist. The contemporary reviews for The Omen were not so positive with many calling it a rather silly film, but over the years it has developed its own cult following. Many consider it to be one of ‘70s most influential horror films, and well that statement can’t be argued with. From The Conjuring’s James Wan to Slither’s James Gunn, 11 Horror Filmmakers Who Seamlessly Shifted to Superhero Genre.
Lethal Weapon (1987)
Mel Gibson and Danny Glover in Lethal Weapon
Donner even made the buddy cop action film genre popular as he directed the Mel Gibson and Danny Glover starrer, Lethal Weapon. Following a pair of mismatched detectives – Martin Riggs, a cop who becomes suicidal after the death of his wife and Roger Murtaugh, a 50 year old veteran of the police force, are tasked to solve a crime. It plays on all the riffs that you see are popular in buddy cop films in recent times, and is one of the best examples of how a film defines its genre.
The Goonies (1985)
A Still from The Goonies
Donner directed this adventure fantasy film as the cast consisted of newcomers at the time like Sean Astin and James Brolin. The film follows kids who live in the “Goondocks” neighborhood of Astoria, Oregon, attempt to save their homes from foreclosure and, in doing so, they discover an old treasure map that takes them on an adventure to unearth the long-lost fortune of One-Eyed Willy, a legendary 17th-century pirate. The Goonies was a really influential adventure film for its time and did really well. It’s a cultural landmark for adventure films, and one that still needs to be surpassed after all these years.
Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut (2006)
Christopher Reeve and Marlon Brando in Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut
Before the Snyder Cut, we had the Richard Donner Cut. Having booted off from his version of Superman II originally as WB didn’t like the darker direction of the film, Richard Donner was brought back in 2006 to complete his vision. To this day many people consider the Donner Cut as the superior version of Superman II, and that’s not hard to debate considering the nose dive the franchise took after he left. Justice League Snyder Cut: 5 Superhero Movies With Superior Director’s Cut Versions That Give Us Confidence in DC’s Upcoming Experiment.
Christopher Reeve in Superman (1978)
“You’ll believe a man can fly” is the tagline that was used to market Superman, and oh boy did it deliver. Superman is responsible for starting the superhero boom that we have ever seen since in Hollywood. It’s one of Donner’s greatest gifts to pop culture as he made the definitive origin story for the Man of Steel. With the iconic performance of Chris Reeve as Superman, Kevin Feige has gone on record to state that they watch the original Superman every time before they start a development on film. Just this one statement should tell you how big of an impact Superman had on Hollywood.
(The above story first appeared on Stock Market Pioneer on Jul 06, 2021 01:25 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website stockmarketpioneer.com).