Friday, May 2, 2014

25 Years Ago This Month: May 1989

Even though they were made during my lifetime, Raiders of the Lost Ark and Temple of Doom felt to me like they were from another time. Of course that's primarily because I was not cognizant of them when they were released and promoted and swept up huge sums of box office dollars. So when Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade was released, it felt like it was made for me. I had no inkling that it was made for me AND an older generation (not even all that far removed from my own really) who were looking to recapture the spirit of the first two films. For me, it was an amazing opportunity to see Dr. Jones on the big screen. The fact that he was up against Nazis again made it seem all the more like the repeat of Raiders that eleven-year old me was looking for. To watch it again now would probably diminish the film in my mind, though not as badly as the second film, I guess. Last Crusade went on to be the highest-grossing film of the year worldwide.

Oh my God, Roadhouse!! Perhaps the greatest bad movie of all time, featuring Patrick Swayze as a dive bar bouncer called in by his old friend played by Sam Elliott to rid one particular bar of a sleazy oppressive element managed by Ben Gazzara. You have to read the section of the AV Club's interview with Kelly Lynch devoted to this movie because the way you learn that producer Joel Silver knew from the script stage that the movie would be awful, but awesome and popular, and the way Bill Murray and his brothers still make harassing phone calls to the Lynch household when it's on TV is hilarious.

Savage Steve Holland's third feature after his zany and bizarrely-directed Better Off Dead and One Crazy Summer was How I Got Into College, which lacked for a John Cusack presence. Instead we got Corey Parker as a geeky high school kid with a crush on the beautiful and brainy Lara Flynn Boyle. He wants to follow her to college but has some serious SAT prep work to do before that's even possible. The other half of the story sort of inexplicably follows office politics of a college admissions office with Anthony Edwards as the hip, forward thinking liaison squaring off against the conservative stiff played by the late Charles Rocket.

The final collaboration between Richard Pryor and Gene Wilder was See No Evil, Hear No Evil. From what I remember it's some kind of a crime caper in which Pryor is blind and Wilder is deaf. I know I've seen most, if not all, of the movie as a kid. It was not well-received at the time and has since been relegated to the dustbin of time.

Except for a couple of scenes, I've never seen Earth Girls Are Easy. Oddly, I don't really feel I'm missing much in this weird comedy musical about three furry aliens (Jim Carrey; Jeff Goldblum; Damon Wayans) coming to earth for the ladies and staying with southern California resident Valerie Gail (get it?) played by Geena Davis. Charles Rocket (again!) costars as does Michael McKean.

Additionally there was the horror comedy sequel Fright Night Part 2, the Clint Eastwood comedy caper Pink Cadillac, an Anthony Edwards apocalyptic thriller called Miracle Mile, and Beastie Boy Adam Horowitz starred alongside Donald Sutherland in Lost Angels.

Non-movie News

20th - As the Tiananmen Square protests continued, the Chinese government declared martial law in Beijing.


(photo: FIFA)
11th - Villareal and Mexican National Team footballer Giovani dos Santos

(photo: Wikipedia)

31st - Borussia Dortmund and German National Team footballer Marco Reus

31st - Chicago Fire and U.S. National Team goalkeeper Sean Johnson


20th - Comedian and SNL alum Gilda Radner from ovarian cancer, aged 42

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