I was watching some of Stephen King’s 1994 miniseries The Stand last night, and I was a little disappointed with my VHS tape of the first half. The picture is fine, but the sound gets loud, then soft, then loud again. I wouldn’t mind either sound quality, as long as the sound stayed the same!
I’m posting here two of my favorite parts from the movie so I can access them anytime I want.
This is from the opening scene of the whole miniseries, and it is powerful for three reasons. First, although I don’t believe in suicide, I like the song “Don’t Fear the Reaper”–in terms of the music, not the words. Second, the scene really hits home the effects of the “Captain Tripps” virus. Here were ordinary people who died in the midst of their day-to-day routine, and in great numbers, too. It was sad, and yet, in a sense, some of them had brought it upon themselves, since they were part of the government facility that had created the virus. And, third, I liked watching the list of actors. Some were established veteran actors in their own right (Ray Walston, Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis). Some were becoming famous at the time (Gary Sinise for Forrest Gump). Some were famous for a role that they had played in the past (Molly Ringwald in The Breakfast Club, Max Wright in ALF). And some would become famous sometime after The Stand (Laura San Giacoma for Just Shoot Me, Rob Lowe for The West Wing).
This is from the opening scene for Part II, “The Dreams.” Fran’s father had just passed away, and Harold Lauder came to comfort her. Harold had always had a crush on Fran, but she had gently rejected him because he was a nerd–she preferred the rough, motorcycle-riding type! Now, Harold and Fran are the only two survivors in their town, the rest of which was wiped out by the plague. As the Crowded House song plays, Fran lays her head on Harold, who doesn’t quite know what to do. He hesitates to put his hand on her. Then, the scene surveys the effects of the plague on a broader scale.