Invasion of the Body Snatchers
Invasion of the Body Snatchers was first made in 1955 and was remade in 1978. Although the original filmmakers and actors deny that there was any specific political intention, the film came to represent the collective fears surrounding the Cold War period, of Communism or, on the flipside, McCarthyism creeping into America undetected. Its remake has been described "as a parable for an age of paranoia, conspiracy theories, psychobabble and the invasion of the will perpetrated by cult leaders" (Newsweek, December 18, 1978). In my painting series, Kevin McCarthy (no relation to the senator), who played the main character Dr. Bennell in the first film also makes a cameo appearance in the remake. While doing precisely the same thing in both films, he warns motorists of the "invasion" and shouts out the same strange prophetic warnings, "They're coming" "Listen to me, we're in Danger"  "You're next" "There's not a single human being left in Santa Mira".  One of the 1978 motorists warned by McCarthy's character is Donald Sutherland, who sees McCarthy through a cracked windshield. Sutherland is playing Dr. Bennell, the same character Kevin McCarthy played in the earlier film, suggesting the impossibility, or cracking of time as Dr. Bennell confronts an earlier version of himself. The paintings represent on one level  the story's recycled prophetic aura, and the fear of losing one's identity and mind in a media age of virtual communication, real TV and collective political and religious experience.