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Your Paracast Newsletter — October 18, 2020

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
The Paracast Newsletter
October 18, 2020

Discover Amazing UFO Cases and Personal Paranormal Encounters with Samuel J. Maranto on The Paracast!

The Paracast is heard Sundays from 3:00 AM until 6:00 AM Central Time on the GCN Radio Network and affiliates around the USA, the Boost Radio Network, the IRN Internet Radio Network, and online across the globe via download and on-demand streaming.

SUPPORT THE SHOW AND ENJOY A PREMIUM PARACAST EXPERIENCE AT A SPECIAL LOW PRICE! We have another radio show and we’d love for you listen to it. So for a low subscription fee, you will receive access to an exclusive podcast, After The Paracast, plus an enhanced version of The Paracast with the network ads removed, when you join The Paracast+. We also offer a special RSS feed for easy updates of the latest episodes on your device. Flash! For a limited time you can save up to 40% on your subscription. Long-term susbcribers will receive a free coupon code for the James Fox UFO documentary "The Phenomenon" while supplies last. So act now! For the easiest signup ever, please visit: Choose Your Membership Upgrade

This Week's Episode: Gene and Randall present investigative researcher Samuel J. Maranto, who will cover a number of the high-caliber UFO cases he has investigated, along with his incredible personal sightings that include both strange objects and apparitions. He is best known for his work on the Tinley Park Mass Sightings during the "year of the weird," 2004, and the Chicago O’Hare Gate C17 incident of 2006. These mass sghtings have been featured in several television programs such as the History Channel’s UFO Hunters episodes “Invasion Illinois & Aliens at the Airport.” Dateline NBC’s “10 Best UFO Encounters” was a major television network special that featured the video footage from the Tinley Park Mass sightings along with other well-noted UFO accounts. Sam is the Current Illinois State Director of the Mutual UFO Network. Sam will also appear on the accompanying episode of After The Paracast, available exclusively to Paracast+ subscribers.

J. Randall Murphy's Ufology Society International: Ufology Society International (USI) - Explore the UFO Phenomenon

Samuel J. Maranto: https://chitownflap.com

After The Paracast -- Available exclusively for Paracast+ subscribers on October 18: Investigative UFO researcher Samuel J. Maranto continues the discussion that started on the October 18 , 2020 episode of The Paracast. During this segment, he focuses mainly on the November 7, 2006 UFO mass sighting at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. Sam paints a detailed picture of the case, which involved a disc-shaped craft that was seen to shoot through the clouds at high speed, leaving a clear blue hole in the cloud layer. He also explains why theories that the UFO was itself an unusual cloud formation simply don't apply, and also covers some potential explanations to the UFO mystery with Gene and Randall. As a guest to a variety of radio shows as well as a public speaker, Sam makes a point to cover key fundamental facts that unshakably illustrate the genuine nature of this phenomenon.

Reminder: Please don't forget to visit our famous Paracast Community Forums for the latest news/views/debates on all things paranormal: The Paracast Community Forums. Check out our new YouTube channel at: The Official Paracast Channel

A Few Random Observations About “The Phenomenon”

By Gene Steinberg

The story behind many Hollywood productions is long and convoluted. While some films are green-lit relatively quickly, others spend years in various stages of production. They move from producer to producer, from director to director, from screenwriter to screenwriter, and often things never come together.

But often they do. So take “Wonder Woman.” The TV series, featuring Lynda Carter, was originally broadcast between 1975 and 1979. Yes, it was that long ago. But the blockbuster movie version, with Gal Gadot as the titular character, directed by Patty Jenkins, premiered in 2017. It went through years of production hell before filming began.

And that’s for a major movie with a budget estimated at between $120-150 million, relatively inexpensive for a comic book movie nowadays.

Now when it comes to a motion picture documentary with a far more down-to-Earth budget, you’d expect that the production timeframe would be relatively quick, but that’s not necessarily so.

Take James Fox’s “The Phenomenon,” which debuted on streaming platforms in the U.S. on October 6, 2020. James has been a guest on The Paracast on seven occasions. On April 20, 2014, he and producer Tracy Torme came on our show to talk about plans to make “701,” a film that would be largely devoted to the number of unexplained cases investigated by the Air Force’s Project Blue Book.

In all, it was a seven-year journey for Fox and his production team to expand the movie’s scope and reach the finish line. Fox has talked about the odyssey, where he literally put his life on hold to get the film done.

The result, “The Phenomenon,” was originally slated to debut in movie theaters, but the pandemic threatens to put the major movie chains out of business. In the end, it was distributed direct to such video-on-demand streaming services as Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV, Vimeo and Walmart’s VUDU. These are the U.S.-based outlets; I don’t know about distribution arrangements in other countries.

So far, it has garnered an 83% rating from both audiences and reviewers on Rotten Tomatoes, which is quite a credible score.

Now I’m going to keep my review relatively brief; I’ve continued to talk about it on the show, and Fox will be joining us on The Paracast soon.

“The Phenomenon” is not confined to the classic era of flying saucer sightings. It provides a credible overview of cases through the decades since the end of World War II. There are interviews galore, some of it featuring vintage footage, such as Mike Wallace interviewing Major Donald E. Keyhoe in the 1950s. Others depict witnesses and researchers as much older people trying to put long-ago sightings in perspective.

Perhaps the most compelling segment provides a lengthy look at the 1994 UFO/alien sighting from 1994 in Ruwa, Zimbabwe, where dozens of school children saw a UFO land, and what appeared to be gray aliens exit the craft.

Fox has assembled vintage footage, where the students and their teachers describe what they saw. The students, preteens, were especially impressive, intelligently describing the UFO and its occupants in great detail. They also produced drawings of what they saw.

The film also features interviews with several of these students as adults, where one of them remarks, “There was no reason for any of us to make that up.”

The 2004 Nimitz “Tic-Tac” UFO also gets coverage along with interviews with such people as former Senator Harry Reid, who makes it quite clear he believes something is going on and that a lot of the U.S. government’s information has not been revealed.

Veteran UFO expert and author Dr. Jacques Vallee, who worked closely with Fox on the film, also makes an extended appearance.

One of the stars of “The Phenomenon” is Christopher Karl Mellon, a long-time government official who worked as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence under both the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations. He was also Staff Director of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

In other words, Mellon is a long-time government insider, who provides a calm, solid, compelling overview of the UFO — make that UAP — mystery.

To his credit, Fox, beyond recreations of some of the locales of prominent UFO cases, avoids the sensationalism and silly speculation of the typical reality show. Those who are skeptical of the Roswell case might quibble with its inclusion in the film, but it only garners a few minutes of coverage.

Fox avoids the excesses, and you won’t see anything about UFO abductions, contactees, channelers, or any of the fringe elements that have polluted the field.

Perhaps the worst criticism of “The Phenomenon” is that the movie focuses on the familiar, cases that most anyone with a long-term interest in the subject already knows about. But this movie is meant for the general public, people who are largely unfamiliar with most of these cases except, perhaps, for Roswell.

In a little over an hour and 40 minutes, Fox deftly puts together a portrait of compelling cases that clearly demonstrate that weird things are happening, deserving of serious investigation. It’s not about aliens on the loose, although that is certainly a possibility.

The music is presentable, production values are excellent, and veteran actor and narrator Peter Coyote’s smooth delivery takes you through the journey in great form.

Even if it’s familiar territory, “The Phenomenon” is definitely worth your attention. While the pandemic may make it difficult or impossible for you to interact with your family and friends to watch it together, you should definitely recommend that they buy this film. At $19.99, with discounts at some services, it’s definitely worth the investment.

I’ve seen it twice so far; first last spring via the screener link from the producers and more recently via a Vimeo digital download, which also includes access to up to three hours of extra material.

And one more thing: When you watch “The Phenomenon,” don’t push Stop when the closing credits begin. Fox pulls a “Marvel Studios” gambit here, where he intersperses extra material between the credits. Forgive the spoiler, but the closing scene remembers the late Stanton T. Friedman.

As I wrote last week, the producers sent us some free coupon codes from Vimeo, which includes both the streaming version and extras, plus the ability to download a copy direct to your computer. While they last, we’re giving them away to folks who sign up for new five-year or lifetime subscriptions to The Paracast+.

To join, just visit: Choose Your Membership Upgrade

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J. Randall Murphy
Like I was saying on the show; The Phenomenon is a must-have for any serious ufology library. Looking forward to our next interview with James too ?