Random Actor Discussion: The underrated Karen Allen

Scott Weinberg

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I was watching Starman the other night and was really impressed by Karen Allen's performance. Of course, she's nest known for her roles in Raiders of the Lost Ark, Scrooged and her debut in Animal House.
After checking her full resume out at IMDb, I'm reminded of how many different types of movies she's been in. Like:
The Sandlot
Malcolm X
The Glass Menagerie
Cruising
Shoot the Moon
Ghost in the Machine
The Perfect Storm
The Wanderers
I'm just wondering why we don't see her on the screen more often. Aside from the fact that she's getting older, which is a sin for an actress in today's Hollywood.
OK, I'm going to bed now.
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Scott
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John Thomas

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Hey Scott,
First of all, let me comment that this is another great topic. "Karen Allen? When's the last time I thought of this actress?" I'm not sure why she isn't more actively sought for movie roles; she always seems to fit. I thought she did an excellent job in The Glass Menagerie (which I saw in high school and started my appreciation for John Malkovich) and like you mentioned, Raiders of the Lost Ark. Does she have a family? Little ones take up quite a bit of one's time...

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Greg_Y

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From her bio at the IMDB:
In many ways her own choices to 'go back to theatre and smaller projects' are the only things that have really stopped her being a major, major star.
 

Justin Doring

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I've always liked Karen Allen, and feel she is underrated. After Raiders I would have thought she'd leap into the spotlight, but I admire her decision to stick primarily with the theater. Frankly, I think she's too smart for Hollywood. Her performance in The Glass Menagerie deserves special mention.
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[Edited last by Justin Doring on September 16, 2001 at 10:37 PM]
 

Martin Jeeves

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One thing that does amaze me about this actress is that she just doesn't seem to age. I mean she is 50 years old and looks like a 30 year old (freckles and a baby face help). From what I can gather Karen Allen is a mother with a son called Nicholas, she has a farm in the Berkshire mountains and a townhouse in upper WestSide New York (must have made a few million dollars then?) and is currently starring in 'In The Bedroom' with Sissy Spacek and 'World Traveller' with Julianne Moore. She has made over 48 films including some TV projects as well as an acclaimed stage career. Her biggest hits include 'Animal House', 'Raiders Of The Lost Ark', 'The Sandlot', 'Malcolm X', 'Starman' and last years 'The Perfect Storm'. From what I understand she is a respected and prolific 'working actress' who likes her private life and doesn't go in for all the 'I'm a star' thing. Honourable. Also an accomplished singer and writer, she has her own clothes label and Yoga enterprise. Karen can also be seen interviewed on the DVD's of 'Animal House: Collector's Edition', 'The Perfect Storm', and apparently the forthcoming Region 2 'Starman: Special Edition'. I'm guessing she may make an appearance on the DVD's of 'The Sandlot' and 'Raiders of The Lost Ark' when they finally arrive (next year?).
These are very interesting links:
The Karen Allen fan site: http://www.acmewebpages.com/karen_a/index.html
Her IMDB filmography: http://us.imdb.com/Name?Allen,+Karen
Her IMDB biography: http://us.imdb.com/Bio?Allen,+Karen
Other fansites of Karen Allen: http://us.imdb.com/NUrls?MSC+Allen,+Karen
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M.J.
 

Ben_J_L

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Yes, she is a top lady, I first saw her in Scrooged (a film I want on DVD but i'm not paying £20 for a bare bones disk) and then I saw her in Raiders.
I heard someone (i think it was Spielberg) say that she got the part in Raiders cus he thought she was "spunky".
 

chris c

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"she is 50 years old"
she likes to kick....stretch.....and kick!

I've always admired her work as well. Rock solid actress.
 

Scott W.

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Karen Allen was totally under-rated. It's to bad she wasn't in any other better movies than Raiders and Animal House. Good actress and pretty cute too.
Scott
 

Joel Mack

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That scene in "Raiders" where she's standing on the deck of the ship in that nightgown made me a fan for life...

Never underestimate the usefulness of a good strong breeze.

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[Edited last by Joel Mack on September 19, 2001 at 10:07 AM]
 

Martin Jeeves

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According to the 'disc news' section at www.dvdfile.com Karen Allen's film 'THE BASKET' is coming to DVD from MGM as a Special Edition on December 11th. This was a great little movie that won tons of awards but sadly, didn't break into the mainstream. Sounds like a good DVD though if you're a fan of the film.
"Next up is the little seen but charming Karen Allen drama The Basket, presented in anamorphic widescreen and English 5.1 surround, along with an audio commentary with director Rich Cowan, deleted scenes with optional commentary; no less than 6 making-of featurettes, outtakes, and the trailer. Retail is $24.95".
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M.J.
 

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