On my favorite holiday movies, B-movie style.

December 15, 2011

I realized a while back that as a young adult I spent a good portion of my childhood with my friends, renting some ridiculous movies to help pass the time.  This was for one of two reason: 3 movies for 99 cents is a bargain to a teenager and six hours of B-movie cinema is guaranteed to have way more nudity than your new releases.  Some of those R-Rating said ‘Graphic nudity’ and didn’t necessarily work out.  Specifically I’m thinking of ‘Dr. T and the Women’.  I did not enjoy looking right into that lady’s birth canal.

But I digress.

Anyways, I realized that there are quite a few entertaining holiday movies out there that… well let’s just say I wouldn’t invite grandma over for egg nog and a night of watching these.  But if you and your friends don’t have much going on one evening and one of you has a VHS player still, I would check these less than traditional holiday movies on for size.

1. Jack Frost

It’s a  prequel to the fantastic cinematic masterpiece starring Michael Keaton… I wish.

Jack Frost Michael Keaton

Sadly, there's no sequel for this movie. Yet.

That would be a long time overdue. No,  I’m talking about this Jack Frost.  If this tagline doesn’t interest you, I don’t know what will:

‘A serial killer dies, comes back as a snowman, and wreaks havoc.’

Jack Frost

I think I’ve seen that plot in a movie before, where a man dies, comes back as a psychotic inanimate object, and wreaks havoc… it TOTALLY works!  Consider the liberal plot borrowing from Child’s Play and the fact that Shannon Elizabeth has a nude shower scene and you can count me in for this one!

2. Santa’s Slay

Santa's Slay

A fun, family friendly film.

I found this cleverly homophone-titled gem on my younger brother’s shelf one holiday season .  In this riveting apocalyptic tale starring fan-favorite Bill Goldberg (yeah, the wrestler), we learn that Santa Claus is actually a demon who lost a bet to an angel. The penalty of that loss: he must spend a REALLY long time dressed up as a jolly fat man laughing and smiling and spreading goodwill towards mankind.  However, after he pays his dues, he goes on a murderous rampage, making up for the lost time, obviously.  Co-starring Fran Drescher and Chris Kattan, you can’t really go wrong with this film.  A holiday can’t miss.

3. Silent Night, Deadly Night

Silent Night Deadly Night

You can tell by the cover, this movie clearly values cinematic traits like 'plot'.

Looking at the cover of this movie, one can instantly understand the appeal of this movie to a thirteen year old boy.  One look at this cover and we were SOLD (in oversized letters, just like that).  What sets this film apart from the two other movies on my list is the great acting by Robert Brian Wilson as the tormented lead.  He stars as a emotionally lost man who was abused as a boy and in turn becomes what he hates the most around the holiday season: a maniacal Santa -clad killer.  Boy, if I had a nickel for every time that’s happened to me around the holiday season.  People can relate to this film.  That’ what makes it so good.
‘Who’s Robert Brian Wilson?’ you ask?  Well, he’s the guy who was in the Knots Landing episode ‘Poor Jill’ as the driver.
Yeah.  That Robert Brian Wilson.

I hope that this inspires some of you find your B-movie diamonds-in-the-rough this holiday season.  Use my list as the springboard for your own inspirational holiday movie-watching-fest.
God bless us, everyone!  And to all a good night!


Awkward Moments in Cinema History, Vol. 1

September 5, 2011

In ‘Awkward Moments in Cinema History’, I’ll be analyzing and discussing moments in movies that make you cringe in disgust.  Some of these moments will make you squirm more than a conversation with your drunken aunt at Thanksgiving dinner, so brace yourselves in advance.

Today I’ll be dissecting one of my all-time favorite movies, ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

One of the greatest movies to ever grace the silver screen.

Indiana Jones has survived the wrath of a vengeful God, saved an entire village from the rich, oppressive overlords that wanted to steal their magic rocks, and engaged in combat with a centuries-old Grail Knight.  Too bad none of that can save him from the terrible truth he unearths in the third installment.  Our first awkward moment comes just shy of the halfway point in the narrative that should have been Indiana Jones’s last go-round with movie audiences around the world.  Sadly, George Lucas is legally insane and wanted to make another two hour movie that was awkward for everyone because they were tricked into paying money to go see it.

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

This movie left more people feeling confused and alone than a deadbeat father.

In ‘The Last Crusade’, Indy traveled halfway around the globe to meet up with his father’s co-worker, the last person to see him before he disappeared.  This wasn’t just any co-worker, however.  It was another professor.  Another hot professor.  Another hot, really young looking professor by the name of Dr. Elsa Schneider, who, coincidentally, also happened to be interested in the quest for the Holy Grail, just like Dr. Henry Jones Sr.  After they meet, Indy and Elsa immediately began a quest of unraveling Dr. Jones Sr.’s mysterious clues along the path of the Holy Grail.  After surviving a cavern full of burning rats and a boat chase through the Venice Canal, Dr. Jones and Dr. Schneider realized their love for each other on the floor of their château bathroom.

Really classy, lady.

Unfortunately for our hero, Dr. Schneider’s lack of class didn’t end there.  It turned out that she was only entertaining his trouser snake because she was a treacherous Nazi-whorebag-spy who was only interested in the Grail Diary Indy had been lugging around since his father mailed it to him at the beginning of the movie.  The very diary that he had been trying to keep away from the Nazis.  After this wretched Nazi skank slept with Indy, she then double crossed him and turned him over to the Nazis.  That is, right after she tricked him into giving up the diary to the evil Nazi, General Vogel.

What a bitch.  And I haven’t even touched on the most detestable part of the hoodwink yet.  It can get worse than turning over your father’s entire life’s work to the very people you just dedicated an hour of the movie to keeping it away from.

With Indy and his father bound to a chair, Elsa whispered to her former lover, Indy, “I can’t forget how wonderful it was,” in regards to their trashy bathroom sex.  To which Indiana Jones’s father replies unwittingly, “Thank you.  It was rather wonderful.”

And that’s how Indiana Jones finds out that he slept with the same woman his dad just slept with.

Harrison Ford - Sean Connery - Alison Doody - Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

"And what did you find dad?" "Me? Illumination."

There can be very few things in life more disgusting than finding out your dad’s wrinkly old balls were touching someone’s genitals right before yours. Even if those balls happen to belong to Sean Connery.  Just stop and think about it.  Imagine if you were dating a girl and you brought her home to meet your widowed father.  Then at dinner, you found out that your dad had already tagged your girlfriend a couple weeks prior.  Doesn’t get much more awkward than that.

Men, after watching this Shakespearean tragedy unfold, there are some very important steps you need to take to make sure that you protect yourself and your dignity.  You need to make sure to ask your partner the standard questions about birth control, STDs, if they’re married, and if so, what time their husband will be home.

More importantly, however, you need to make sure that your partner has not slept with your dad in the weeks leading up to the passionate bathroom floor sex you’re about to have.  That’s terribly disgusting and now, an incredibly easy situation to avoid.

Another Way to Die

August 21, 2010

On hypotheticals

June 18, 2010

The other day I was drinking with a group of friends, and after a few hours of conducting ourselves accordingly, we, like most people, started talking about questionable moral choices that we’d all made throughout the courses of our lives.  Like dinging someone’s car with your car door when you get out, sneaking your own candy into the movie theater, or masturbating into a library book before you return it.

Mine: Shallow Hal

Cringe worthy.

Around the time Shallow Hal was released on video tape and this new thing called DVDs (they’ll never last), my best friend told me that he wanted to see the new Jack Black movie.  It looks hilarious! he says.

(I’m sorry for the aside, but I’m assuming that all of you reading this have a best friend and can therefore understand where I’m coming from with this.  If not, before you continue reading this post, you should go make a best friend so you can better understand this scenario.  I trust my best friend with my life.  If I were taken captive by terrorists and tied to train tracks and left for dead, my best friend would do whatever he had to do to save me.  If I were Catholic, he’d be the Godfather to my unborn children.  I trust him that much.  So when my best friend told me that a movie looked hilarious, I was apt to believe him.  I learned however, that his taste in movies… I guess I may not trust his ideal comedy as much as his ability to dispatch an entire underground terrorist organization.  The whole point of this aside, I suppose, is that I did not… did not… suggest watching Shallow Hal.  Nor have I ever suggested such a thing.)

Riding the coattails of his critical acclaim as J.D. in the foreign film of the year “Saving Silverman”, my friend informed me that Jack Black had made his own situational comedy, in which he co-starred with Gwyneth Paltrow and George from “Seinfeld”.  Recipe for success, right?  At least to a 19 year-old boy it doesn’t sound like too bad of an idea.  19 year-old boys also tie sleds to the backs of their friends’ Jeeps and drive down unplowed roads at 40 miles an hour.  Needless to say, the judgment and critical thinking skills of a 19 year-old may not be as well developed as on might expect.

That evening I suffered through one of least enjoyable cinematic experiences of my life. I remember laughing at all the right parts; Gwyneth’s 10XL underwear, or her jumping into the pool and splashing all of the water out of it.  All the while, Jack Black is totally aloof to all the gags and simultaneously I’m wishing that the movie had been filmed in Latin so that it would have made more sense.  I guess I laughed because it was supposed to be funny.  But my laugh was hollow and empty.  Much like my heart.

Anyways, after discussing this with my friends, I realized that Shallow Hal brought up a very delicious discussion appetizer.  I don’t want to say that I learned anything from that disaster.  However, hypothetically, think about being able to communicate with someone via telephone, text message, e-mail, whatever.  The means of communication isn’t important.  What is important is that person you’re talking to… you can’t see them.  You know absolutely nothing about what they look like.

Now imagine that you can openly and easily communicate with them like no one else that you’ve ever met in your life.  You don’t believe in soul mates, because women have no souls, but if they did, this person would be your soul mate.  You’ve learned to affectionately care for this person.  Deeply.  You love everything about them.  Even their little bastard son.

Careful, or you could end up with this keeper.

Then let’s say that you finally get a chance to meet in the flesh.  And it turns out this person is not up to your physical standards.  “Ugly”, you could say.  Maybe not even hideous, like hillbilly ugly, but just unattractive to you.  Could you spend a considerable amount of time with someone of the gender you’re attracted to, even if they were ugly?  Now let’s up the ante.  Could you spend time with them if they were attracted to you and looking for something more than just a friendship?

Typical Shallow Hal viewers would probably tell you that they learned a valuable lesson from Hal’s story.  You should love someone for who they are on the inside.  I absolutely agree with that sentiment.  Everyone is special for who they “really” are, not what they look like.  Right.  That’s why all the actresses in Hollywood are so hot.  Because of their awesome personalities.  F that.  I want my soul mate to be a pre-preggo Jessica Alba, or else I’m going to look for a new one.  I couldn’t make a connection with someone that fat.  Are you kidding me?  The whole time we’d be talking, all I would be able to think about is Kevin Spacey in “Se7en”.  Then I’d be freaked out because, Jesus, Kevin Spacey is a weird guy and I don’t want to have to worry about being around someone that serial killers may be targeting.  No way.

In hindsight, I probably did not take away the same lesson from that movie that most people did.  Or that the producers, directors, or writers intended for me to take away.  Oh, well.  I’m going to go troll the anorexic self-help groups and look for someone I can connect with emotionally.