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The Shadow
(1994 Film)

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The Shadow (1994):  Forget what the critics say, this movie ROCKS!  I'm not an Alec Baldwin fan per se, but he was perfect as Lamont Cranston, a wealthy young man about town also known as "The Shadow".  Penelope Ann Miller, a great actress who I enjoy in many films, plays the Shadow's female companion Margo Lane.  And to top it all off, you've got Hollywood heavy John Lone as Shiwan Khan, the last living descendent of Genghis Khan and enemy to humanity!  This movie has excellent casting, excellent action, and outstanding special effects!  The only thing I think held audiences back from really wanting to see this at the time is the fact that most people did not know what The Shadow was!  The Shadow was actually the first superhero ever, and his origins can be traced back into the late 1910s (before his very own radio show, which began in 1937).  By the late 1950s The Shadow had already run its course; the radio show was cancelled and the character wrapped up a successful career.  But of course, nothing good stays down for long and revivals of the character have popped up from time to time, mostly in comic books.  Generally, though, you had to be someone in their forties or fifties at the time to really know what the Shadow character was about.  That eliminates the predominately teenage to thirties age range which makes up most of the movie-goers.  Plus, they didn't really promote this movie very well at the time so few people hardly even knew it was out there.  What they could've done to drum up publicity before the movie's release was to do something like an animated series well in advance to let people know what this character was about.  Oh well, some people aren't good at marketing.

    Shadow fans can tell you that this movie borrows elements from both the radio show and the pulp magazines.  It's an interesting blend of the two...and it works!  You can research this further on the Internet or in the radio shows and magazines themselves if you do not know what I mean.  He's an interesting superhero because he has the ability of mass-hypnosis and to make himself appear invisible...all but his shadow which is the one thing he cannot hide.  He can also read minds and move things with his mind.  The real kicker is that his enemy, Shiwan Khan, can do all these same things!  The movie has too intricate of plot for me to really delve into in such a brief article, but I strongly suggest you see it!