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June "I Love the 80's & 90's" 2013 challenge


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#21 of 34 PatW

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Posted June 16 2013 - 12:39 PM

 Terminator 2 (1991) (bluray) 4/5

 

Probably ties with the first one as one of my all-time Sci-fi favourites at least in the action category. The kid was somewhat annoying, and I didn't like to see Linda Hamilton all beefed up like that. There was also too many cutesy moments but overall the story kicked ass.

 

 

 Goldeneye (1995) (M-time) 3.5/5

 

A pretty good Bond story with Pierce Brosnan now in the role as that tough as nails but charming British agent. Sean Bean as Alec Trevelyan makes an excellent villain and it was nice seeing Judi Dench in the role of M, a part that would extend over a few films.

 

 

 Mrs Doubtfire (1993) (dvd) 3.5/5

 

More of Robin Williams nonsense. This time he plays a father who will just about do anything even dressing up as a 60 yr. old woman, in order to spend time with his children who are being used as pawns in a bitter custody battle. Some good laughs here.

 

 

 Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) (M-time) 3/5

 

I thought I had seen every Bond film but I stumbled across one I've never seen before. I thought the main villain was weak. A media mogul who wants to start a war to gain worldwide media domination. I mean really. Plus I have a hard time buying Jonathan Pryce as a villain but I did enjoy the ride.


Edited by PatW, June 16 2013 - 12:40 PM.


#22 of 34 JohnS

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Posted June 18 2013 - 02:43 PM

Since I'm going to San Francisco soon, I just had to watch So, I Married an Axe Murderer (1993) again.
When I first saw this in the theaters, I never did like this movie.
It was when it hit video that I really started enjoying this movie.

I then saw for the first time Gia (1998) I just thought it was an average movie (TV movie) it was really interesting to see how she really screwed up her life.

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#23 of 34 Bryan^H

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Posted June 18 2013 - 07:12 PM

3-Dying Young.  From the early 90's this one was a major misfire in the eyes of film critics.  I always liked it   The Blu-Ray from Anchor Bay looks great.   I think it is the finest performance of Julia Roberts, the drama is a tad heavy handed in spots(The title is DYING YOUNG for heaven sakes) but overall I think it is a really good film with great performances by both Roberts, and Campbell Scott.  Grade-B

 

4-Romy And Michelle's High School Reunion.  Funny, very funny stuff.  It has been a while since I watched it so fortunately I forgot a lot of the jokes.  It like seeing again for the first time sort of.  Grade-A


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#24 of 34 Walter C

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Posted June 23 2013 - 11:49 AM

Got sidetracked on catching up with current TV shows, that I never got around to this challenge until now. Starting off with my favorite all-time film series, the Back to the Future trilogy, which I still have on VHS.

 

Back to the Future (1985) - 5 out of 5
The only one that I did not see in theaters. This film centers around Marty McFly, who goes back to 1955 and has to fix what he messed up, before returning to his time. The movie is definitely dated, not just because they tell you what the present time was, but also the Huey, Lewis and the News songs, like Power of Love and Back In Time. Still, a great film in its own right, and I probably memorized almost all the lines in the film, having seen it so many times. It was meant to be a standalone film. Turned out, the "To Be Continued" was tacked on the VHS release.

 

Back to the Future, Part 2 (1989) - 4 out of 5
Picks up where the first film left off, as Doc, Marty, and Jennifer travel to 2015. Basically, it could have been a short story, with one act leading to another. I could not help but think, if they did only this or that, the movie would over, which would not led to the nightmarish version of 1985, or having to go back to 1955. But that's just nitpicking, and I could do that all day. Watching it now, I can't get past the fact that it's only 2 years away, and noticed a lot more product placement than before. But still, it is as enjoyable as the first movie, as the latter half pretty much goes back to the first one from a different angle. This one centers around Biff Tannen and his relatives, the main villains of the series, as they are the reason why Marty and Doc have to travel to all those different time periods.

Back to the Future, Part 3 (1990) - 3.5 out of 5

A nice way to end the trilogy. While not on par with the first 2 films, as it does spend too much time in 1885, we do get one that centers around Doc Brown, and him finding love in Clara (who I did not mind). Still, the same 2 gags from the previous films are repeated here, which by then, you can't help but feel like "all right already". A little homage to the Clint Eastwood westerns, as Marty went by that name in 1885. While I love watching these 3 movies, I never wished there was a Part 4. Not then, and not now.


TV Episodes Watched - 2009 (1419 ep) / 2010 (1367 ep) / 2011 (1509 ep) / 2012 (1440 ep) / 2013 (1191 ep) / 2014 - September
Feature Films Watched - 2012 (97 seen) / 2013 (100 seen)
Shorts Watched - 2012 (222 seen) / 2013 (87 seen)

Books Read - 2013 (12 read)


#25 of 34 Michael Elliott

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Posted June 23 2013 - 02:23 PM

Ghoulies (1985) * 1/2

Lame rip-off of GREMLINS has a man moving into an old mansion where he eventually decides to bring out the title creatures who of course go on a killing spree. Apparently this thing started off as a higher-budget R-rated horror film but then the budget was slashed and they decided to aim at the kid market. Well, this here was obviously a mistake because what remains in the film is a semi-horror film that's too tame to go all the way yet at the same time there's really nothing here that would appeal to children. I think the producers forgot that they were trying to aim this at kids and instead us poor viewers were left to suffer. The story itself is a pretty silly one that takes way too long to get going. At just 82-minutes this film seems twice as long and this might be due to the fact that the actual ghoulies don't appear until around the forty-minute mark. Even when they do arrive they don't exactly bring any excitement with them as they're just not scary enough to have any impact. A lot of the violence is also off screen so gore fans aren't going to get any of that here. Even worse is that there are a couple sexual scenes here that have been toned down and in this condition they just really don't serve any purpose to the film. Of course, in a R-rated film they might have at least been used just to show off some cheap nudity. The performances are pretty much what you'd expect from a film like this. John Carl Buechler does a fine job with the special effects but sadly they're not used nearly enough. GHOULIES might appeal to those who enjoy bad 80s movies but the rest should just stay clear.

 

Re-Animator (1985) ***

Twistedly delightful updated of the H.P. Lovecraft story about a couple med students (Jeffrey Combs, Bruce Abbott) who find a way to bring the dead back to life but the only problem is that they're not returning in a good mood. RE-ANIMATOR is certainly a film like nothing anyone had seen up to the point of its original release. Yes, there had been dozens of mad scientist movies but this one here manages to mix gore, sex, violence and comedy unlike any other film before and director Stuart Gordon deserves a lot of credit for taking all of those elements and making them work so well together. What I enjoyed most about the picture is the fact that you never quite know where it's going to go next. The film takes all sorts of wild turns as the doctor's experiments just grow more outlandish and dangerous and especially once another doctor gets put into the mix. This other doctor also has one of the most outstanding scenes in the film but I won't spoil it for those who haven't seen it. However, once you've seen the film then you'll know what I'm talking about. Combs is perfect in his role as the crazed scientist and I really enjoyed how serious and how dark he played the character. Abbott is a lot more fun in his over-the-top style but the two actors work perfectly well together. Both David Gale and Robert Sampson are fun in their parts and Barbara Crampton is wonderfully charming as the girlfriend. RE-ANIMATOR is about as good as a film like this is going to get as all the elements work well and director Gordon perfectly pulls it together.

 

Innocent Blood (1992) **

Director John Landis once again mixes comedy and horror and the end result is Marie (Anne Parillaud), a female vampire who just happens to have a craving for Italian men, which might work well for her since there's a Mafia battle going on. As more and more made men turn up drained of blood, a detective (Anthony LaPaglia) begins to think that it might be the work of the supernatural. INNOCENT BLOOD can only been seen in one way and that's a major disappointment. Those hoping to see another classic like AN American Werewolf IN London are going to be especially disappointed because we know that the director is capable of doing something special with this type material but the material itself is the real killer here. As you watch this movie you really can't help but get frustrated because there are so many interesting ideas that could have worked into a good movie but it seems like they were working off a first draft screenplay and one that needed a lot of re-writes. The stuff dealing with the Mafia men turning into vampires could have been interesting but nothing is done with it. The entire erotic side of Marie would have made for a much better movie than what we ended up getting. There are so many scenes in this film that just seem flat but with a little work they could have been something better. Landis perfectly nails the erotic side of things but a lot of this is due to the beautiful Parillaud constantly taking her clothes off. The horror elements aren't all that memorable, although the death scenes deserve some credit for how much blood there is. Everything with the mob is just downright silly. The film at least offers up a wide range of familiar faces including Robert Loggia, Chazz Palminteri, Marshall Bell, Angela Bassett, Luis Guzman, Don Rickles, Tom Savini as well as some directors like Sam Raimi, Dario Argento and Frank Oz. And yeah, Forrest J. Ackerman is also on hand. INNOCENT BLOOD should have been so much more entertaining but sadly it's just a forgettable waste of time.

 

Cheech and Chong's Next Movie (1980) **

This follow up to UP IN SMOKE really doesn't have any plot but just a bunch of gags dealing with Cheech and Chong getting into various bits of trouble and yes, most of it deals with pot. CHEECH AND CHONG'S NEXT MOVIE is a surprisingly lame and tame movie that hasn't aged very well at all. I remember watching this back in the day and thinking it was at least a middle ground C&C movie but when viewed today I have to wonder if I was smoking something myself. I think the biggest problem is that there's really no story here. Sure, UP IN SMOKE wasn't Shakespeare but it at least had the characters doing some fun stuff on their various journeys. Those journeys here just aren't all that memorable and even worse is the fact that we get very few laughs that work. You know you're in trouble when you get C&C, pot and aliens and no laughs. There's a long running gag set inside a sex house but there aren't any laughs to be found here either. Even some of the opening bits aren't nearly as funny as one would hope for but if a gun was at my head I'd say that the pee and bag of "cocaine" would be the best of the film. Needless to say, both Cheech and Chong are very good in their roles and we also get a fun performance by Paul Reubens. Cutl fans will also spot Cassandra Peterson, Michael Winslow and John Steadman who some might remember from THE HILLS HAVE EYES. I guess fans of the comedy duo will want to see everything the group did but there's no question that this here isn't one of their best.



#26 of 34 Michael Elliott

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Posted June 23 2013 - 04:47 PM

BTW, does anyone know what next month's challenge is going to be?



#27 of 34 Walter C

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Posted June 24 2013 - 06:34 AM

The Karate Kid (1984) - 4 out of 5

First seeing this movie from start to finish in a very long time. I think the last time I saw it, I remember watching it in a Tae Kwon Do gym, around the time when it first came out on VHS. A very enjoyable movie, as this is about Daniel and trying to adjust to his new life in California. Some scenes really stood out, like when Daniel got beaten up by the Kobra Kai bullies, only to be saved by Mr. Miyagi. Also, whenever hearing the song "Cruel Summer", I can't help but think of this movie, as the songs pretty much scream 80's.

 

The Karate Kid, Part 2 (1986) - 3 out of 5

An okay sequel, that continues the story. This time, the focus being on Mr. Miyagi, as he returns to his homeland, Okinawa. While not as good as the first film, I thought it was worth watching, mainly for the Miyagi storyline. The Daniel storyline is okay, though at times, it seems to be repeated. And this movei reminds me of the old Nintendo game, where most of the stages came from this film. The fight at the end, is just as good as the one in the first film.

 

I have not decided yet, whether to watch Part 3, as I keep hearing how crappy it is.


TV Episodes Watched - 2009 (1419 ep) / 2010 (1367 ep) / 2011 (1509 ep) / 2012 (1440 ep) / 2013 (1191 ep) / 2014 - September
Feature Films Watched - 2012 (97 seen) / 2013 (100 seen)
Shorts Watched - 2012 (222 seen) / 2013 (87 seen)

Books Read - 2013 (12 read)


#28 of 34 PatW

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Posted June 24 2013 - 09:35 AM

Michael, I don't think anything has been decided yet as far as what's on next month. I know Criterion was mentioned but I hope not since I don't have enough to make it worthwhile.

 

 Mad Max 2 aka The Road Warrior (1981) (bluray) 5/5

 

I was good friends with two Australian ladies who opened a video store in the late 70's early 80's down the street from where I lived. As you can imagine they brought in every Australian tape that was available at that time. They recommended Road Warrior to me stating you're going to really like the guy in it. I think this was even before Year of Living Dangerously was playing at my local theatre. Needless to say Mel Gibson was an unknown and I developed an instant crush on him that lasted for a few years.

           No matter what my feelings are regarding him today there is no doubt that he was made and excels at this type of role. This is one long chase movie from beginning to end with very little dialogue but the action speaks for itself. In fact it's so fast paced it can get overwhelming at times for the uninitiated. I love post-apocalyptic movies and this is one of the better ones. I probably was over generous in my rating but what the heck.

 

 Star Trek 3: In Search of Spock (1984) (bluray) 4/5

 

Second movie in my favourite Star Trek trilogy. This one begins where Wrath of Khan left off with the Enterprise and her crew returning home having left Spock's burial tube on the Genesis planet. I think this movie is unfairly maligned and though not as great as Wrath of Khan, it still is a worthy follow-up. The only small niggle that I have is the recasting of Robin Curtis as Saavik. She really seemed uncomfortable in the role, her lines seemed forced and she just generally lacked the charisma of Kirstie Alley. Still good movie in its own right.

 

The World is Not Enough (1999) (bluray) 3.5/5

 

Not too much to say about this one. Passable Bond movie.



#29 of 34 Michael Elliott

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Posted June 24 2013 - 06:21 PM

Thanks.  I remember one was a foreign month and a documentary month but I just couldn't find the exact list.



#30 of 34 Michael Elliott

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Posted June 27 2013 - 12:29 PM

The Blues Brothers (1980) ***

Madhouse from John Landis has Jake and Elwood Blues (John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd) getting their band back together so that they can raise $5,000 to save their orphanage where they were raised. At first it seems like raising the cash will be easy but the brothers soon have Nazies, cops, angry cowboys and others chasing them through Chicago. THE BLUES BROTHERS is one of the most entertaining bad movies I've ever seen. There's so many great things in this movie but at the same time there are so many things that bothered me and kept me from enjoying the picture even more. We'll start with the bad and I'd say it's obvious that there's no story here. Instead of an actual story we just get non-stop music scenes as well as car crashes, two things that actually work in the movie but the extended running time is just way too long and I was constantly looking at the watch to see how much longer there was. The lack of any real story and the extended running time are certainly the two things that keep this from being better because outside of this there's quite a bit to enjoy here. The best thing is the fact that Landis pretty much throws everything out the window and right at the viewer. This includes some of the craziest, most over-the-top chase/wreck scenes that you're ever going to witness. There are many throughout the picture but for me the highlight would have to be the one inside the mall where everything in sight gets destroyed at least twice. Another good thing the film has going for it are some of the musical performances especially the ones dealing with Ray Charles, Cab Calloway, Aretha Franklin and John Lee Hooker. Then, of course, you've got Belushi and Aykroyd turning in great performances as the Blue Brothers. You can't help but feel like you're watching real brothers doing real blues. THE BLUES BROTHERS is far from perfect but there's still enough here that makes it worth viewing.

 

Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986) ***

The popular Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick) decides to take a day off school so that he can enjoy the beautiful weather with his best friend (Alan Ruck) and girlfriend (Mia Sara). Even though Bueller has created a lot of tricks to pull this day off, he still has to avoid his principle (Jeffrey Jones) who has been waiting four years to bust him for skipping school. FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF comes from John Hughes and it's easy to see why so many people really love this picture. There's a certain innocent quality that comes with it that makes it something rather special and especially when you consider what other types of teen comedies were being released around this time. I think what makes the film work so well is that it really captures the spirit of what it's like really skipping school. I'm sure most people have skipped a day or two and just sat at home because they didn't have the courage or the ways to do what Ferris did so I think there's a certain fantasy appeal that people have with the character and film. A lot of credit has to go to Hughes' screenplay, which offers up plenty of great characters, fun situations and of course it just allows for a good time. More credit has to go to the cast members for being able to pull off their roles. This includes Broderick who is extremely good in the lead role. I think a lesser actor or a lesser performance really could have made this character annoying but Broderick hits all the right notes in making Ferris rather charming. Both Ruck and Sara are good in their supporting roles as is Jennifer Grey in her role as the sister. Edie McClurg adds her typical wonderful charm and even a young Charlie Sheen gets a pretty funny role, although it probably works better today knowing who Sheen became. However, it's Jones who really steals the picture as the principle who is constantly getting himself in one bad situation after another. The comic timing of Jones is quite flawless and he really makes the picture what it is.

 

An Officer and a Gentleman (1982) ****

Box office champ about a loser (Richard Gere) with an attitude who tries to become an aviator and once at the Naval academy gets involved with a local woman (Debra Winger), a new best friend (David Keith) and a gunnery sergeant (Louis Gossett, Jr.) who tries to get through to him. This here not only ranks as one of the best films of the decade but I think a strong argument could be made that it's right up there with CASABLANCA as one of the greatest love stories ever told. The film is flawless from the acting to the directing to the characters and the story. I really don't think I could find a single negative thing to say about this film and what's so shocking is that a mainstream movie could be so brutally honest on so many levels. This film has quite a bit going for it and all of it works perfectly. This includes the fun scenes early on during the basic training all the way up to the darker elements of the picture. I really can't recall too many movies that have such rich characters as this one. This isn't just true of the lead characters but even the smallest ones also have an impact on the story. The real showcase is of course the love story between Gere and Winger and I think it works perfectly well and is very much believable without coming across as fake or forced. The second love story is the one between Gere and Keith, which is something that doesn't get enough credit in the picture. Of course, there's also the Gossett character and his relationship with Gere. The film is certainly all about relationships and how humans deal with one another and their emotions.

The performances are certainly some of the best you're going to see. Gere never gets the credit he deserves, which is a real shame but this here is perhaps his greatest performance. Just the way he goes through the various stages of this character is pretty special to watch and he perfectly nails all of it. Winger is also extremely good in her part and I thought she brought a certain maturity to these sometimes wild, young and naive characters. Keith is the one who never gets enough credit for his part but we've also got Robert Loggia, Lisa Blount, David Caruso, Grace Zabriskie, Tony Plana and Harold Sylvester doing great work. Gossett certainly deserved his Best Supporting Actor Oscar as he turns in one of the more memorable roles of any military officer.

Director Taylor Hackford really keeps the film moving at a wonderful pace but he smartly mixes in some laughs with all of the heavy drama. There are some pretty dramatic and dark moments scattered throughout the film but there are also several moments that are quite funny. The film ended up winning two Oscars but I think it could have won a lot more because it really is the type of film that you can watch over and over and never grow tired of it or have its power fade.

 

Supergirl (1984) * 1/2

Superman's cousin Kara Zor-El (Helen Slater) comes to Earth after a powerful orb lands on the planet. She takes a new identity under the name of Linda Lee and soon learns that a wicked woman name Selena (Faye Dunaway) plans to use to orb for some pretty bad reasons. SUPERGIRL came to theaters shortly after SUPERMAN III and I think it proved that that producers were simply interested in trying to make money and not necessarily good films. SUPERGIRL is a pretty awful movie from start to finish with a laughable story and special effects that are anything but special. The only saving grace in this film is that Slater is pretty cute and she looks even better in that superhero outfit. I must admit that the short skirt is a real eye-catcher. The biggest problem with the film is that it never seems to know if it wants to take itself serious or if it just wants to be some sort of campy non-sense. This here is the fault of director Jeannot Szwarc who just doesn't handle the material very well. There are so many scenes that appears to be taking themselves way too serious yet at other times you have scenes of pure camp. A lot of the camp value comes from the Selena character who is one of the worst "villains" in the history of superhero movies and it's not any better because Dunaway just goes so over-the-top that this here would make a great double feature with MOMMIE DEAREST. As with SUPERMAN, this one here manages to get some impressive supporting players including Peter O'Toole and Mia Farrow but both are pretty much wasted. Slater's acting ability isn't the strongest but then again it's doubtful Meryl Streep could have done anything with this story. SUPERGIRL is a pretty embarrassing movie that might be made better with a higher blood alcohol level.



#31 of 34 PatW

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Posted June 27 2013 - 07:18 PM

Brubaker (1980) (bluray) 4/5

 

Always caught the tale end of this movie and only watched 1/4 if that, so I'm counting it as a new watch. Picked this up from my son who bought it but didn't care for it. I've always been a fan of Robert Redford and while this is nowhere near the top of my fave Redford movies he does give a credible performance here as a liberal prison warden trying to make reforms in a prison where everyone seems satisfied with the status quo.

 

 2010 (1984) (bluray) 3.5/5

 

Certainly pales in comparison to 2001 but as a sequel, it is decent enough. Certainly for the general public it is easier to relate to, has more action, is not so minimalistic in nature, and its themes are generally understood.

 

 

 Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade (1989) (bluray) 4/5

 

My second favourite of the four movies, Raiders being my fave. Nice bonus addition to the cast to was the inclusion of Sean Connery as Henry Jones Sr.

 


Edited by PatW, June 27 2013 - 07:19 PM.


#32 of 34 JohnS

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Posted June 30 2013 - 04:32 PM

I watched Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) also watching it since my girlfriend (34yrs old) has never seen the last half of the movie.

July is going to be documentary challenge.

Edited by JohnS, June 30 2013 - 04:36 PM.

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#33 of 34 PatW

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Posted June 30 2013 - 09:56 PM

Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) (bluray) 4/5

Just newly acquired the box set trilogy. This is out for the first time on bluray and it's a good transfer. I liked this one a lot, though not nearly as well as the Road Warrior. There are some great ideas here, though the first part is more successful than the second part of the movie. I didn't mind the children as much as some others though. The Thunderdome sequence is just brilliant and it is worth noting that they used all of Gibson in the fight instead of the stuntman because Gibson managed a lot better and looked more believable on those bungee cords. Also some memorable lines came out of this movie. I didn't mind Tina Turner in the role but she certainly wasn't a draw for me. I preferred all the other supporting characters over her.

I almost wish they had continued this series with Gibson because I would have loved to have found out what happened to him.

Persuasion (1995) (dvd) 4/5

Not my favourite Jane Austen book to film adaptation but still fairly decent. Too many scenes of the characters just wandering around but I did enjoy the love story.

#34 of 34 PatW

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Posted June 30 2013 - 10:01 PM

Well I didn't watch as many as I thought I would but still managed 17 and 3 were

new watches.

 

Favourite movie:  Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

 

Least fav movie:  Vegas Vacation






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