Altered States (1980)
Since I started using this avy/sig combo, I couldn't stop thinking about this movie and how well it fits in Nolan's world. If he was a director back then, (IMO) maybe this would be the kind of picture he'd make, and more so, nowadays, it would be an excellent choice for a remake "Nolan style". This film was one of my most remarkable teenage movie experiences and I wanted to write something nice and accurate about it, so I looked it up in Wikipedia to better express myself.
Directed by the late, very controversial, awesome English filmmaker Ken Russell (Women in Love, The Devils, Tommy, Lisztomania
, among others), Altered States
followed his bold "in-your-face" conceptual tone approach to genre as the previous films I've mentioned (all of them, very unique and daring). It was his only science fiction (horror) film, and what a crazy, intriguing and intelligent sci-fi it was (like the next step for those conceptual sci-fis of the 70's).
The screenplay was adapted by the author of the novel (Paddy Chayefsky - weird shit - if you dig Carlos Castañeda, you'll certainly dig this) and both are based on John C. Lilly's sensory deprivation research conducted in isolation tanks under the influence of psychoactive drugs like ketamine and LSD. Russell's choices in elaborating the visual effects to translate Chayefsky's hallucinatory story to film are (in lack of a better definition) far out, man!
His characteristic religious and sexual content makes it even stronger.
The Academy Award nominated score by classical composer John Corigliano was considered very innovative at the time (very weird too). The film was also nominated for Best Sound, but lost to The Empire Strikes Back
marks William Hurt's screen debut as a university professor of abnormal psychology that, while studying schizophrenia, begins to think that our other states of consciousness are as real as our waking states. He begins experimenting with sensory-deprivation using a flotation tank, then travels to Mexico to participate in a (apparently) Ayahuasca ceremony. Under the influence, he experiences bizarre, intense imagery. He then returns to the U.S. with a sample and begins taking it in flotation tank sessions, but now, starts to experience a series of increasingly drastic psychological and physical transformations (that's when the real fun begins). I'm not gonna go further with the synopsis, just one more thing about my avatar:
For all this, I strongly recommend checking this out (also, other Ken Russell films). I wonder what Nolan thinks about this (surely he has seen it). Wouldn't you say it looks like somewhat of a Nolan theme? If updated, it could be a hell of a movie.