Celebrating the Unpopular Arts

Some more movies I’ve had a chance to watch or re-watch recently

The last time I watched a bunch of movies, it was because my wife and daughter were away and I got a chance to sit around and watch things my wife wouldn’t necessarily want to re-watch. This time, I’ve just been watching these over a few months, and I watched enough of them to have a good, solid post. So let’s take a look at some movies we’ve probably all seen and about which I have nothing interesting to say!

1. Johnny Dangerously (1984). As far as spoof movies go, Johnny Dangerously isn’t one of the best. It doesn’t compare to Airplane!, obviously, or even Top Secret! But it’s fun, getting by on Michael Keaton’s charm and its inherent goofiness. This might be the only time Joe Piscopo was tolerable (my wife and I still say stuff like “My father hung me on a hook once. ONCE!”) and the rest of the cast is good, too, from Marilu Henner in the thankless role of “girlfriend” to Griffin Dunne as Johnny’s clueless brother (remember back in the early 1980s when it seemed Dunne would be the next big thing?). Everyone is having fun, and it’s infectious, so even though the movie isn’t nearly as sharp as those movies I noted above (and, let’s be honest, Top Secret! isn’t even that sharp, so for this to fall short of that is saying something), it’s still fun to watch it every once in a while.

2. Witness (1985). Peter Weir is a terrific director, and the fact that he hasn’t made a movie since 2010 is annoying, because I’m not sure why he doesn’t do more. Maybe he’s officially retired on some ranch in Australia? If you don’t know Weir’s name, you should: He made The Cars that Ate Paris, for crying out loud! His breakout film was Picnic at Hanging Rock, which I’ve still never seen (but I really want to!), but then look at this Murderer’s Row of movies: Gallipoli (1981), The Year of Living Dangerously (1982), Witness (1985), The Mosquito Coast (1986), Dead Poets Society (1989), and then, after Green Card in 1990 (???), we get Fearless (1993) and The Truman Show (1998). That’s, in order: a classic, a classic, a very good crime thriller, a weird psychological drama, an overrated but still powerful film with killer performances, Green Card (to be fair, I’ve never seen it, but it can’t be good, can it?), another classic, and another very good movie. Then he made Master and Commander, which I’ve never seen but seems pretty darned good. That’s a great 20-year run, and Weir doesn’t get enough credit for being a top-notch director. Witness is a good crime drama, with Ford doing his Ford thing, one of the more erotic and female-empowering female topless scenes you’re going to see (McGillis is superb in that scene, and it’s far more erotic than their sloppy kissing a few scenes later), and Danny Glover going full asshole (1985 was Glover’s break-out year, with this and Silverado – an excellent movie, by the way – coming out in that year). I didn’t realize that Viggo Mortensen is in this movie, but he’s there – he’s Alexander Godunov’s brother, and in the scene in town where Ford decks the mouth-breathing asshole, thereby drawing attention to himself and leading to the final showdown, Mortensen is in the wagon (he’s in other scenes, too, but he’s most prominent there). It was his movie debut, but even then, it reminds me that Mortensen is a lot older than you might think (he turned 59 this year). Dude looks good for his age. Check him out!

3. The Goonies (1985). Growing up, I never saw The Goonies, which I admit is a big gap in my adolescent movie-watching experience. I have no idea why I didn’t – I was 14 when it came out, which would make me the perfect age, but I didn’t see it in the theater nor on videotape or television in the years following. I finally saw it a few years ago and … was not terribly impressed. It was okay, but nothing special. Recently, we watched it again because after we watched Stand By Me, my daughter became obsessed with Corey Feldman. Seriously. She has Corey Feldman as her wallpaper on her phone, she follows him on Instagram, she’s drawn him a few times … she’s 12 years old, by the way. We’re not completely against her Corey Feldman obsession, but it is a little bizarre. Anyway, this was better the second time I watched it, even though I still don’t love it. I think it’s partly because Sean Astin is really, really annoying in this movie, so the fact that he’s the central character is frustrating. Also, I know it’s a kids’ movie, but the whole thing with them losing their house never really feels real, as it’s the driving force of the movie but doesn’t seem to have much substance to it. Richard Donner’s casting (beside Astin) is great, though – Feldman is good, Brolin is good, Kerri Green is … all right, Martha Plimpton is great (and she and Feldman hated each other, which makes their friendship at the end fun to watch), Ke Huy Quan is good, Robert Davi, Joe Pantoliano, and Anne Ramsey are good as the bad guys. It’s a fun movie, but not a classic. Sorry!

4. Some Kind of Wonderful (1987). A while back, Pretty in Pink was showing at a movie theater here in town, and my wife took my daughter to see it. I don’t mind Pretty in Pink, but I told my daughter that if she wanted to see the “real” version, she should watch this. It was on not too long ago, so we watched it. I adore this movie, from the great script to the great acting to the excellent casting. Molly Ringwald was going to be in this, but she didn’t want to do it, so Lea Thompson stepped in, and she is absolutely radiant in this movie, and she sells Amanda’s pain far more than Ringwald ever could (I like Molly Ringwald, but Thompson’s a better actor). Eric Stoltz’s goofy vulnerability serves him very well (whenever he tries to play a hard-ass, it comes off a bit odd), and his and Thompson’s conversation at the Hollywood Bowl is amazing. Mary Stuart Masterson is brilliant, although I do wish she hadn’t wanted the earrings so much. Still, her role is the trickiest, because she has to be in love with Stoltz without becoming a wuss, and she handles it perfectly. It’s just a wonderful movie, and it ends on a killer rendition of “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Lick the Tins.

5. The Lost Boys (1987). This was also part of my daughter’s Corey Feldman obsession, so of course we had to watch this! She liked this more than The Goonies, mainly because Feldman is more awesome in it. I’ve always loved this movie, as ridiculous as it can be. My wife and I always called Edward Herrmann “King of the Vampires” whenever we saw him in anything (well, we still do, even though he’s acting in the Big Theater in the Sky these days), and my wife, in particular, always dug Jason Patric and she and her friends always dug Jamie Gertz’s fashion (that flouncy dress she wears when Patric first sees her always gets a “Ahhh, that peasant dress!” out of the wife). Once again, the casting is impeccable: Patric is broody, which is all he needs to be (he’s usually whiny when he opens his mouth, so just sit there and brood, Jason!), Gertz is all right, but Corey Haim is good as the Phoenician fish out of water, while the Frog brothers are excellent, Keifer rules, and Dianne Wiest (who won her Oscar before this came out, although she had probably filmed it before) is brilliant as always. The soundtrack is amazing, too. And Oiled-Up Shirtless Sax Player should have been in every movie in 1987:

(Fun fact: I mentioned Oiled-Up Shirtless Sax Player on Facebook once, and one of my Facebook friends – a comics artist, actually – said that the dude played at a wedding he attended once. He was not, unfortunately, oiled up and shirtless. Still, that’s awesome.)

6. Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987). After we watched Some Kind of Wonderful (see above), I was looking for more John Hughes movies to watch with the daughter, and of course we had to watch this one! Hughes was on fire in the mid-1980s – he directed and/or wrote National Lampoon’s Vacation (w), Mr. Mom (w), Sixteen Candles (w/d), The Breakfast Club (w/d), National Lampoon’s European Vacation (w), Weird Science (w/d), Pretty in Pink (w), Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (w/d), Some Kind of Wonderful (w), and Planes, Trains and Automobiles (w/d) between 1983 and 1987. That’s amazing. Of course, this is a superb movie, although it’s one of those movies where you say “God, just do THIS!” or “Just do THAT!” and everything would have worked out. Still, Steve Martin is hilarious, John Candy is brilliant, and, of course, we get this absolutely amazing scene:

Plus, if the ending doesn’t get you, you might be dead inside. You should get that checked out.

(The lack of an Oxford comma in the title really bugs me, too. Damn it, John Hughes!)

7. Beetlejuice (1988). Hey, remember when Tim Burton made good movies? Beetlejuice is one of my favorites by him, and I hadn’t seen it a long time, and we thought my daughter would like it, so we DVRed it and watched it with her. She did like it, which is nice. Such a fun movie, back when Burton wasn’t as concerned with being too weird and still cared about making sure the characters were engaging. Good times! Plus, of course, it gave us one of the most amazing long-running gags in television history:

8. Bowfinger (1999). Eddie Murphy should have won the Best Actor Oscar in 2000 for his dual role as Kit and Jiff Ramsey (Jiffrenson, technically) in Bowfinger. You know who won the Best Actor Oscar in 2000? Fucking Kevin Spacey for American Beauty, that’s who. Okay, I like American Beauty, but it’s a bit overrated. Fucking Sean Penn was nominated for Sweet and Lowdown, as was Russell Crowe for The Insider and Denzel for The Hurricane. Could any of those pikers give us a perfect satire of Murphy’s action movie persona (along with any other random action movie persona in Hollywood) and nail his unbelievably nerdy brother, too? Fuck no, they couldn’t. The movie is hilarious, with Steve Martin trying to make a movie without Kit Ramsey’s knowledge, and his little troupe of actors (including the hammy Christine Baranski) tries to keep up. Heather Graham is brilliant as the girl from Ohio who’s not really “from Ohio” (meaning she sleeps her way to the top without even thinking about it), and Terence Stamp as the head of a weird cult that’s definitely not Scientology is superb. The Academy Awards don’t go to comedies very often, and that’s a shame, because this might be Murphy’s best acting work. HE WAS ROBBED, I TELLS YA!!!!

9. Basic (2003). I know Basic doesn’t have a terribly good reputation, but I love it. It has to be the greatest movie in which John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson share screen time, right? I can’t think of anything else. Basic is a fun twisty movie, with Travolta getting called in to investigate the disappearance of Jackson and some Army Rangers in the jungles of Panama. He and Connie Neilsen (who is on active duty and doesn’t like Travolta’s ex-soldier coming in) interview Brian van Holt (who will always be Bobby Cobb to me), who tells them a story about what happened, but when they realize he’s lying about some things, the whole narrative is called into question. The bad guy is pretty obvious, but it’s still a fun story, and the cast is good – Tim Daly is Tim Daly, which is all right, Giovanni Ribisi does a completely hilarious and inexplicable Southern-ish accent (I think it’s supposed to be Southern!), and Roselyn Sanchez does not walk around in lingerie like she does in Rush Hour 2, but that’s all right. Fun stuff.

10. EuroTrip (2004). The only people who don’t like EuroTrip are the people who haven’t yet seen EuroTrip. If you like raunchy 1980s-style sex comedies, you should watch this, because not only is there plenty of nudity (including, quite possibly, the most penises ever seen in a mainstream movie), but it’s hilarious from start to finish. There’s a little bit of homophobic stuff, but it’s very minor and is part of the movie’s attempt to mock pretty much everyone it can find. It begins with the main character, Scott, getting dumped by Kristin Kreuk at his high school graduation, who is then later revealed to have been fucking Matt Damon every chance she can get, something Scott finds out when Matt Damon (in the best role of his career?) sings about it:

Scott then thinks that his German pen pal is a dude and wants to come to the States and hook up with him, so he gets angry and tells “him” to get lost (he’s really drunk when he does), but his little brother points out that he got her name confused with “Mike” when it’s really “Mieke,” and of course she’s blazingly hot. So Scott heads off to Berlin with his best friend, Cooper (Jacob Pitts, who years later was the coolest character on Justified, which is kind of tough because every character on Justified was cool), but of course they get sidetracked and spend the movie wandering all over Europe. They meet up with their friends Michelle Trachtenberg and Travis Wester, playing the worst twins ever (they end up making out while drunk one night), and they have many adventures. Vinnie Jones shows up as a hilarious football hooligan, Lucy Lawless is a brothel madam with some interesting devices, and Fred Armisen is a super-creepy Italian (that’s where most of the gay panic stuff comes in, but the movie is mocking Italians more than anything, and Armisen does go after Trachtenberg a bit, too, so he’s a non-discriminatory creep). Rade Serbedzija even shows up, and you know it’s a good movie when Rade Serbedzija shows up! The movie mocks the English, the French, the Dutch, the Germans, the Italians, the Slovakians, the Catholic Church, and its four main characters relentlessly. It did poorly at the box office, but it’s a perfect cult classic. It’s so freakin’ funny.

11. Stick It (2006). I wrote on Facebook the other day that if loving Stick It is wrong, I don’t want to be right. Yes, it’s a movie about gymnastics starring Jeff Bridges, or all people, and it’s awesome. Missy Peregrym (that can’t be her real last name, can it?) is phenomenal as the gymnastics wild child who has one more chance to stay out of jail by going to Bridges’s academy, where he’s trying to regain some past glory. I thought of this while watching it, but it’s basically a Tom Cruise movie from the first decade or so of his career. He was always playing rebels who were great at what they did but didn’t play by the rules and had daddy issues, and they were tempered by a male mentor who took the father role and turned their rebelliousness into something good. Peregrym takes a stand against the ridiculous and arcane system of judging gymnastics, and it’s brilliant. The actual gymnastics are great, it’s a great commentary on people who try to live vicariously through their children and what that does to the kids, both mentally and physically (there’s a great moment when some of the gymnasts wonder why the boys are paying attention to other girls, and Peregrym says “Boobs – they have boobs”), and it’s actually quite funny. If you liked Bring It On (and, let’s be honest, who doesn’t love Bring It On?), then you’ll probably dig this. I will fight anyone who picks on me for loving a teen movie about gymnastics! Do you really want to fight over that?!?!?!

That was fun, wasn’t it? I still have a bunch of movies on my DVR, so I’m not done yet! But now it’s time to catch up on our shows again, so it might be a while before I can get to the movies. On the other hand, I don’t work, so I always have some time. Risky Business isn’t going to watch itself!


  1. frasersherman

    “My wife and I always called Edward Herrmann “King of the Vampires” whenever we saw him in anything (well, we still do, even though he’s acting in the Big Theater in the Sky these days”
    He had to fake his death before people noticed he wasn’t aging any more. And you fell for it.
    A good list: I’ve seen a little over half. American Beauty is way overrated — I thought Ice Storm nailed suburban American despair a lot more effectively.

    1. Greg Burgas

      frasersherman: Dang it, I DID fall for it!!!

      I haven’t seen American Beauty since I saw it in the theater, so I don’t know how well it’s aged. I did like The Ice Storm more, though, so there’s that.

  2. I have referenced at least four of those movies in the last few months!

    I also quote the “Once!” thing from Johnny Dangerously all the farging time.

    Some Kind of Wonderful is my favorite brat pack flick, and that’s 100% because of Mary Stuart Masterson’s character.

    I spent a lot of time in Santa Cruz growing up, which meant a lot of walking across the Lost Boys bridge.

    Never seen Stick It, but I do of course love Bring It On, because I am a living, breathing human.

    1. Greg Burgas

      buttler (I don’t know if I’m allowed to call you by your real name!): Great minds think alike!

      Man, I bet my daughter would love to walk across the bridge. She’s just wacky that way.

      One of these days Bring It On will be on, and I’ll get to re-watch it. So much awesomeness!

  3. Witness is a brilliant movie, because Peter Weir is a brilliant director, and Kelly McGillis could even make Top Gun worth watching. You really should see her in her film debut, Reuben, Reuben. She is positively luminescent in it.

    I was way too old for The Goonies. To me it’s 2 hours of a chubby kid screaming into the camera.

    Some Kind of Wonderful is one of John Hughes’ best films.

    Planes, Trains and Automobiles would be absolutely unwatchable if anyone other than Steve Martin and John Candy were in it. Both of them could tap-dance on that line between being the most annoying man on earth and being heartbreakingly genuine and vulnerable. We have to alternately be appalled by them and forgive them in almost every scene, and they do it masterfully.

    Stick It is another example of Jeff Bridges’ amazing ability to always be better than whatever script he’s given. As you said, the plot here is pretty standard-issue teen drama, but Missy Peregrym (yes, that’s her real name) and Bridges raised it to an entirely different level. It occurred to me when I saw it that I’ve never seen Jeff Bridges be bad in anything. Either he chooses his movies wisely, or he’s just a hell of an actor. Possibly the most underrated of his generation.

    Sadly, I’ve not yet seen the rest of your list. Most came out when I was raising kids and didn’t see anything unless it had a Happy Meal associated with it.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Jim: I have not seen Reuben, Reuben. Dang it, so many movies, so little time!

      I agree about Planes, Trains and Automobiles and the casting. That’s true about a lot of movies, where the casting is crucial. It’s why so many remakes fail miserably. You can’t catch lightning in a bottle twice!

      Bridges IS a great actor. I’m so glad he finally won an Oscar, because he could have easily won one for The Fisher King or Fearless (a Peter Weir movie!). He was in K-Pax, though, which I’ve not seen but heard wasn’t very good, so maybe he’s not perfect! 🙂

  4. Edo Bosnar

    O.k., first I have to say that it’s so nice to know I’m not alone in my appreciation of Bowfinger – loved that movie! And yeah, Murphy was great in it.
    As for the other stuff, of the ones I’ve seen, I mostly agree with your brief assessments. I also saw Goonies much later, like in the ’90s, on VHS, and then I watched part of it again on TV. Like you, not impressed (mainly I just liked that it was shot in and around Astoria, OR). Although I guess I can understand why a lot of people have fond memories of it: if watched at the right age, like as a pre-teen or early teen (I was about 16 when it came out, so already “too mature” in any case), this movie probably seemed epic. Sean Astin, by the way, is really annoying in pretty much everything – and yes, I’m including LOTR in that.
    Johnny Dangerously: yep, it’s objectively not a very good movie, but I have a fondness for it like you. I think my favorite aspect of it is something Buttler touched on in his comment: the gangster who mispronounces all the swear words. Never fails to make me laugh.

    As for American Beauty: that movie is so unbelievably fargin’ overrated. I’ll admit, I liked it the first time I saw it, but after two repeat viewings, I realized that it fools you with its excellent photography and editing, and some admittedly outstanding performances – otherwise, I think the underlying story and some of the messages conveyed are simply vile.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Edo: I forgot to respond to you, because I thought it was hilarious that they start out in Astoria and go underground, walk about a mile, and end up in Cannon Beach. Fun with geography!

      We were in Astoria a few years ago, and it was right after the 30th anniversary of the movie, and it was depressing. The owners of the “Goonies” house had put up blue tarps to discourage people from taking pictures, because tourists were coming onto the property, right near the house, and apparently some were relieving themselves right around the house. People are a bunch of savages, I tells ya. I don’t know if they took the tarps down eventually, but you could see the blue from the main road, and it was just sad that they were forced into it.

    1. Greg Burgas

      Simon: Well, that sounds amazing, but if you think it’s playing in Phoenix or anywhere except a very few artsy type places around the country (it might be in Portland, because they’re nice and snooty up there), you’ve got another thing coming! 🙂

      Part of watching the new movies is having access to them, and since we don’t go to the movies very much anymore, that means them being accessible on television. I will definitely have to keep an eye out for that one, because it sounds awesome, but I fear it’s too obscure to make it to HBO!!!!!

      1. Simon

        @Greg: Man, how can a Van Gogh biopic be “too obscure”? Especially with the oil-paint gimmick? (And maybe it’ll be running in Portland when you go to their con?)

        If that one’s obscure, what would you say about all those Belgian arthouse neo-Westerns that are 30% Sam Peckinpah, 30% David Lynch, 30% Sergio Leone, and 10% Jodorowsky, like LET THE CORPSES TAN?

        * (positive) “But it’s not the plot one should focus on when absorbing this madcap orgy of gunshots, paint explosions, surrealism (love the Bondian gold girl at the header), Jess Franco-worthy hyper zooms and sweat and blood and fluids. No, the only hope you’ll have of truly embracing the film is to take it as a moving comic book, with each panel an explosion of fetishized, switchblade-edited violence and exaggerated cool.” @ http://www.comingsoon.net/horror/features/886853-tiff-2017-review-let-the-corpses-tan

        * (mixed) “Any stray excerpt of “Corpses” could be taken as evidence of a fascinating, eccentric lost obscurity, replete with all the outdated joys of its chosen era and genre references. They include solarized images, gratuitous nudity, giant Spaghetti Western-style closeups of glaring eyes, disorienting cross-cutting, gauzy flashbacks, surrealism, crude symbolism and so forth, all shot for maximum grainy nostalgia value in super-16mm.” @ http://variety.com/2017/film/reviews/let-the-corpses-tan-review-1202556780/

        * (roundup) https://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/let_the_corpses_tan/

        (Still, isn’t obscurity required for proper operation of the silver screen?)

        1. Greg Burgas

          Simon: You’ve obviously never been to Phoenix, land of the strip mall, Applebee’s on every corner, and Avengers, Star Wars, and Transformers movies as far as the eye can see! We do get plenty of art-house kind of movies, but they’re very hard to find and play in very few places for very short times.

          “Belgian art-house neo-Western”? If you said that out loud in Phoenix you’d be tarred and feathered. Better watch out!!!! 🙂

        2. M-Wolverine

          Well, I’d say one is a movie that only appears in art houses, usually in college towns. It’s playing in my town for like 4 days twice a day. And I see at least 3 in Arizona, but I haven’t scrolled far enough to find Phoenix. Usually places like Tempe and Tucson, with colleges.


          The other is a movie that only appears at film festivals hoping someone will see it and give it even the modest release above, or pick it up for home video. There’s obscure, and then there’s no one sees it.

          1. Greg Burgas

            M-Wolverine: Hey, that Tempe one is fairly close to my house (10 miles, maybe?). That’s right by Arizona State, so it’s not surprising that it’s there. Of course, with us, not only finding movies, but having the time to see them is a big issue, but maybe I’ll ask the wife if she wants to go see that this weekend …

          2. M-Wolverine

            It does look like an interesting movie, but yeah, finding time to go out to see 3rd string movies gets tougher and tougher after you’re not single or childless. I’m lucky to get out to see Star Wars tonight!

          3. Simon

            @M-Wolverine: Well spotted. Actually, LET THE CORPSES TAN is already set for non-fest release in 2018 — but its obscurity is liable to remain close to that of a Hawkingian black hole. (C-can one say “Hawkingian black hole” in Phoenix?)

            “ ‘Let The Corpses Tan’ is expected to play at other fall and winter festivals. Kino Lorber is planning to release the film theatrically next summer, followed by a launch on SVOD, VOD and physical media in fall 2018.” @ http://variety.com/2017/film/global/kino-lorber-acquires-north-american-rights-to-let-the-corpses-tan-exclusive-1202573073/

          1. Simon

            @Greg: O Tempe o mores? It may have a larger screen than the Phoenix one (boasting 70 seats according to G. Oogle), but the latter replays MIRACLE MILE if you’ve never seen it?

            * “Watch an independent movie with an adult beverage in your hand”, “Be sure to get a punch card if you see a movie. When you see four, the fifth is free!” @ https://foursquare.com/thefilmbarphx

          2. Simon

            @Greg: Yes, and it’s always interesting to watch people’s reactions when telling them that FULL METAL JACKET and MIRACLE MILE are kinda two sides of the same coin, not unlike war and peace… (Because they can both stand for a metaphor of the human condition, if you ignore their plots except for the endings?)

  5. M-Wolverine

    I find myself agreeing with most of your overrated/underrated stuff. Johnny Dangerously was never great, but I think it’s one of those that probably was more hilarious then than now. But it will always have quotable going for it, which is a big part of staying power.

    Peter Weir hardly makes bad films, so it is a shame he doesn’t do more. But then the movies he makes probably don’t get made that much, and when they do they’d rather go with a young indie director – read: cheap.

    I’m huge on the whole Stranger Things style 80’s nostalgia as that’s my era, but Goonies never really did it for me back then. If I was going for Spielberg produced from that era I’d sooner do Gremlins. THAT was a great movie.

    If you’ve done all those others with your daughter, have you done Say Anything yet?

    I’m not sure Tim Burton and Johnny Depp have been good for each other after Ed Wood. And I thought it was fine, but my brother is a mad Bowfinger fan. And yeah, that winner list is weak. American Beauty one of the most overrated, art just for art movies of all time. Spacey is scum, and is actually great when he’s playing scum, but that movie was like what coastals thing fly over country life is like. Made by a British guy. Looking at Hollywood now, I think a lot of people just were getting their rocks off with rose petals and underage girls.

    Roselyn Sanchez was underrated. She got the hot girl roles, but had charm too. I can’t help thinking if she was breaking out today she would have more opportunity. And speaking of hot girl roles, Kristin Kreuk yum. Definitely Damon’s best role. (Good Will Hunting? Martian? Pfff) And that describes Jacob Pitts perfectly.

    I mainly remember Missy Peregrym from Reaper, but she’s kept working pretty well.

    And since it’s probably not reviving the old talk about it in the other comments section, Disney buying Fox seems to be going through. For the next generation of movie columns.

    1. Greg Burgas

      M-Wolverine: We haven’t watched Say Anything with the kid yet. I look for it occasionally, but it hasn’t been on a channel recently, but it’s often on my mind!

      Gremlins is another one that I look for occasionally. That IS a great movie, and the sequel is awesome, too.

      Man, that Disney/Fox thing makes my head hurt. Where’s Teddy “Trust-Buster” Roosevelt when you need him?!?!?

      1. M-Wolverine

        Well, being someone who only cares how entertainment affects me (DANCE MONKEY BOY DANCE!!!) All I can think of is Dr. Doom finally done right, in an FF movie that doesn’t suck, then threatening the rest of the Marvel Universe (X-Men too!), Chris Evans in Marvel Team Up Captain America/Human Torch, and most importantly, maybe finally getting a release of the original SW trilogy in HD. Because the Special Special special edition of Return of the Jedi is so bad I actually felt the need to watch the dvd last time.

        1. Greg Burgas

          M-Wolverine: Oh, yeah, entertainment-wise, it’s great, and the crossover possibilities are terrific. I still worry about the monopolization aspects of it, but my inner (well, let’s be honest, outer) nerd is excited.

          Your Star Wars experience COULD NOT be more of a First World Problem if you tried, so well done, sir!!!! 🙂

          1. M-Wolverine

            Hey, it’s not my problem that other kids are starving in Japan.

            But between that painful Jabba the Hutt musical number, the makes no sense Sarlacc “improvements,” not one, but two Nooooooo!!!’s, inserting instant galactic celebrations (and more Gungans), and not ending my trilogy on Yub Nub, some things I just can’t stand for!!! The TV will only up res so much.

            Celebrate the Love.

  6. I never thought Kristin Kreuk could act worth a damn. Pretty, but meh. On Smallville, she always did that little half-gasp in the middle of the most important word in the sentence so you know she’s emotional, but then you have no idea what she actually said. Super irritating. In my head-canon, she and Allison Mack had switched character names. Kreuk plays Chloe, the vapid but hot cheerleader that Clark is obsessing over, while Mack plays Lana, the intrepid girl reporter who is Clark’s best friend and hopelessly in love with him, but he never notices. It’s a much better show that way.

    (Of course now that we know Allison Mack is the bugfuck-crazy co-leader of a sex cult that brands its women, the show takes on a whole lot of creepy new subtext.)

  7. I highly recommend Picnic At Hanging Rock (although that music – argh! I think it helps add to the unsettling nature of the whole thing, but if anyone ever bought that soundtrack and put it on to relax, they may need serious psychotherapy…)

    Have you ever tried doing something with Goonies on in the background? I don’t think there’s a line in that movie that isn’t yelled. It’s just a yell fest. Oftentimes, yelling over the top of each other (hey, at least THAT’S naturalistic.)

    The scene in Bowfinger where Eddie Murphy has to cross that busy LA expressway makes my hair stand on end. Terrifying.

    For more great Steve Martin performances, may I recommend the original Muppet Movie where he plays a waiter who could NOT hate his life any more than he does.

    And for a great cult film recommendation that gets no love, watch Shorts. A Robert Rodriguez kids film, told in overlapping short stories, Pulp Fiction style, about kids who find a wishing stone. James Spader is the bad guy, Kat Dennings is in it, as well as Leslie Mann, Jon Cryer and William H Macy as the various parents. The lead girl’s character name is Helvetica Black. I mean… come on. I love it, but as with all cult films, YMMV. 😉

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