Monday, September 2, 2013

25 Years Ago This Month: September 1988

Of course you can see in the September releases that the big summer blockbusters have finished and the studios are trotting out the stuff they think will contend for awards (at least the first of them anyway). So that's how you end up with...

Michael Apted's adaptation of Dian Fossey's story, Gorillas in the Mist, starring Sigourney Weaver as the doomed zoologist murdered in her cabin in the mountains of Rwanda.

Richard Dreyfuss starred alongside Raul Julia and Sonia Braga in Moon Over Parador, a comedy about an actor hired to play the part of a dictator of fictional Latin American country Parador after the death of the actual dictator. Obviously made to resemble Augusto Pinochet, he ended up looking like a cross between the Chilean dictator and Gaddafi.

David Cronenberg's Dead Ringers had Jeremy Irons in the dual role of identical twin gynecologists who take advantage of the fact that no one can tell them apart.

John Sayles, known primarily for original works made independently, adapted a book about the 1919 Chicago "Black Sox" scandal into Eight Men Out, starring John Cusack, Charlie Sheen, David Strathairn, among others, as the defamed baseball players who notoriously threw the World Series for a payday they never received.

That's it for the films I've seen or seen parts of.

River Phoenix's only Oscar nomination in his tragically truncated career came for Running on Empty, directed by Sidney Lumet, about the son of two former Vietnam war protester terrorists on the run from the FBI.

Everything Else: The Obscure and Things I've Never Heard Of

Sweet Hearts Dance was a marital drama featuring Susan Sarandon, Jeff Daniels, Elizabeth Perkins and Don Johnson, which I guess shows how much pull the "Miami Vice" star had back in the 80s.

October - Stars Sally Field and Tom Hanks helped bring some box office dollars to Punchline, about struggling stand up comedians, but they didn't help give it staying power.

Cassandra Peterson, famed for her campy role as the hostess of "Movie Macabre" in the early 80s, finally got her own film in Elvira: Mistress of the Dark.

While Gary Sinise was occasionally getting TV movie roles, he directed Richard Gere and Kevin Anderson in Miles from Home, about two brothers who go on a bank robbing spree after being forced out of their farm in the midwest.

Matt Dillon and Andrew McCarthy also featured in a midwest bank robbing tale called Kansas.

Charles Bronson. Messenger of Death. Anyone know anything? Anyone?

Seriously, you just have to read the summary of Spellbinder to believe how crazy it sounds. Kelly Preston is on the run from a coven of witches who are demanding her as a winter solstice sacrifice? Tim Daly comes to her rescue. I almost want to check this out. Almost.

Ismail Merchant (of the highly regarded Merchant-Ivory productions) produced The Deceivers with Pierce Brosnan in a plot that looks to complicated to bother to repeat here.

Henry Winkler (Fonzie) directed Billy Crystal and JoBeth Williams in a comedy-drama called Memories of Me.

And Chris Columbus directed a comedy with no big name stars called Heartbreak Hotel which involves some kids deciding to kidnap Elvis Presley for their mother, or something.

Non-movie News

17th Opening ceremonies of the Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea.

 19th - Olympic diver Greg Louganis famously smacks the back of his head on the diving board during competition.

24th - Carl Lewis set a world record 100m in 9.92 seconds.
29th - Florence Griffith Joyner sets a world record 200m in 21.34 seconds.
29th - More than 2 1/2 years after the Challenger, NASA launches the space shuttle Discovery - the first shuttle mission since the disaster.


2nd - Spanish footballer; current World, European, and Champions League champion Javi Martinez.
3rd - German footballer Jerome Boateng (teammate of the above Martinez at Bayern Munich)
23rd - Argentine tennis player Juan Martín del Potro. He is the only player outside the quadruple threat (Federer, Nadal, Djokovic, Murray) to win a Grand Slam tournament in the last 9 years (he won the U.S. Open in '09)
29th - Oklahoma City forward Kevin Durant

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