atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#5791: No, NOT Stephen King's It, a different It

It is what I recall the name of the movie was.

When I was a young lad, 5 or 6 or 7 or so, I was absolutely terrified by the trailer I saw on TV for a movie. I couldn't imagine wanting to watch it, because the trailer made it look like the movie would be extremely frightening. This was the mid-1970s, and as I recall the name of the movie was It. This was on the order of a decade before Stephen King wrote his novel by that name, so I know it wasn't anything of his.

Considering it's been, what, forty-plus years since I saw that commercial, I may have the title wrong. But regardless of how I search, I can't find anything resembling the movie.

The story revolved around some kind of monster. My Dad later told me it wasn't that scary, and told me about the plot, but I never did watch it. Apparently there was some kind of scroll involved, though, and whoever had the scroll could make IT do what they wanted? I'm not sure. I'd like to see the thing, if I could find it, which I can't.

Come to think of it, there was another movie from that era I wouldn't mind watching. This one was about a group of men being stranded on an island with a tribe of women warriors. I think there was a scene where the amazon leader (?) flays a guy with her rapier (?) that was in the actual trailer shown on TV, and there was a reaction shot of the severed flaps of skin landing in a pile. That's what I thought I saw, but even at the time I didn't see how something like that would have been allowed on television.

This was the mid-1970s, recall, when everything was heavily censored. You couldn't say "sex" on TV without the FCC coming after you, and Saturday Night Live was really pushing the envelope when John Belushi, off camera, yelled, "OOOWWW! MY PENIS!" on the air.

That's why, during one retelling of the Manhattan Project on a major broadcast network, in the late 1980s, I couldn't believe it when they had the guy playing Oppenheimer say something Oppenheimer actually said: "The atomic bomb is shit." They muted the word down, but if you turned up the volume you could clearly hear the guy saying, "AH, THE ATOMIC BOMB IS shit." (I had taped it, so repeated playback to confirm I'd actually heard what I thought I'd heard was possible.)

And that's why I made a big joke out of them announcing the fact, imagining the actor playing Oppenheimer turning to the camera: "That's right; I said SHIT! I said SHIT! on national TV!" Cue the marching band and the big sign that says SHIT in flashing lights and so on.

Showing a man's severed skin flopping around just seemed as if it was beyond the pale in the mid-1970s. I mean, they don't even do that on Game of Thrones.

I know that, in the sober light of adulthood, both these movies--even though their trailers terrified me as a kid--will be cheesy and not even remotely scary. But I think it'd be fun to see them.

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