Sunday, May 28, 2017

DOWN BY LAW (1986), TAMPOPO (1986, JAPAN),


The trio of prisoners in Down by Law

The list at the bottom of this page shows I saw a lot of movies from this year that were the biggest hits of the year. But I did miss the two smaller movies until now, Down by Law and Tampopo. Down by Law is Jim Jarmusch's film about a trio of falsely accused prisoners who were set-up busting out of jail. It is another intriguing character study from Jarmusch and I admit I've become a fan of his films (better late than never on the Jarmusch bandwagon). The engaging trio of Tom Waits, Roberto Benigni and John Lurie is fun to watch. Don't expect the road often taken by other films plotwise, but hopefully you will enjoy the journey.
It's what's for dinner in Tampopo

It seems that in recent years, people are more and more obsessed with food as entertainment. The cooking channel, cooking contest shows and several movies. Big Night, Chef, The Cook, the Thief the Wife and Her Lover and Babette's Feast are movies that come to mind that have followed Tampopo. Tampopo may have been one of the first to tap into this vein over thirty years ago. It's the story of a trucker who helps a stranger with a noodle shop make improvements to her building, her food and her promotions to make herself a success. But how do you make this entertaining? That's the question that may have come up in the beginning, but Tampopo succeeds by being light, breezy, and having engagingly  off-beat characters. It also interspersed the main action of the film with little vignettes whose only relation to the main storyline is that they involve food. These "subplots" threw me off a bit at first, but once I realized what they were, I thought they did add flavor to the overall piece.


Here are some of the movies I've seen released in 1986 that didn't quite have the right stuff to make the 1001 movie cut. My wife was next to me as I was writing this and wanted to offer her opinion on some of these movies.

1. Howard the Duck-I remember the Howard the Duck comic strip as being a pretty creative undertaking from Marvel about a duck caught up in a universe he didn't belong to. I saw the movie based on it the day it opened...and to say it didn't translate all that well to the big screen might be a bit of an understatement. I do admit I was happy to see the Howard the Duck cameo at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy. It's been over thirty years since I've seen -I think I'm ready for another viewing! My wife says: "I'm not really familiar with Howard the Duck. Didn't he do a record of Disney sing-a-longs?"

                          Lea Thompson and Howard the Duck model their respective night clothes
in Howard the Duck

2. 52 Pick Up-I have to admit that the only thing I remember about this John Frankenheimer crime thriller is....Vanity's strip tease scene. Just being honest. I'm sure the rest of the film is just fine, too.
Probably wouldn't watch again, but I dont rule out catching Vanity's striptease scene on Youtube. My wife says: Nothing, because I did not wish to talk about the striptease scene with her.

3. 9 1/2 Weeks-I remember this controversial (at least at the time) story of kinky sex and obsession as not doing too much for me.Should I revisit? I'd probably watch Fifty Shades of Gray before I'd watch this again. My wife says: "Twisted, not my idea of what romance should be."

4. Crocodile Dundee-Probably the defining movie of 1986 (Though some may want to give Top Gun that title but they are wrong.). Dundee is the story of an American journalist who goes to Australia to interview the eccentric crocodile hunter named Dundee. The first half of the movie is the culture clash in Australia and the second half has Dundee going to New York and the culture clash is even more pronounced and has many comical moments. Star Paul Hogan made Crocodile Dundee II a couple of years later. I think he should have cranked out a few more while the character was hot, but that's just me.Should I revisit? I'd like to see the first Crocodile Dundee again. I'll probably pass on Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles.
My wife says: "Top Gun was definitely the defining movie of 1986!" I still say it was Crocodile Dundee. Opinions differ.

Paul Hogan asserts his manhood in Crocodile Dundee

5. Clan of the Cave Bear-This is a problem listing as I was actually thinking of Quest for Fire and NOT Clan of the Cave Bear. I was going to edit this out, but my wife says to leave it in and warn people NOT to ever watch Clan of the Cave Bear!
Revisit? No. But I'd like to see Quest for Fire again. 

6.F/X-Thriller dealing with makeup and special effects that I saw on the USA network thirty years ago. My vague recollection of F/X is that it was pretty good.
My wife says: "I haven't seen it, but it sounds interesting."

7. Back to School-I first remember Rodney Dangerfield from the Dean Martin shows during the 70's. Despite being a very funny self-deprecating stand up comedian, he seemed an unlikely candidate for movie stardom in the 80's. But Caddyshack, Easy Money and his valedictorian address in Back to School gave Rodney a brief but deserved ride as a movie star. I saw all these films at the theater, but could never bring myself to go see Ladybugs. My wife says Back to School is "ridiculous, but enjoyable."

Rodney Dangerfield getting his Longfellow straightened out
in Back to School

8. A Great Wall-Saw this Chinese film about a Chinese family adapting to life in America when it came out. I remember it as a good film.

9. Gung Ho-Similar cultural classes in this comedy as in A Great Wall, though this Ron Howard movie was a comedy about Japanese automakers trying to whip their American counterparts into shape. "If you guys are so come you lost the big one!"  I say it was amusing. My wife says she "liked that one."

10. True Stories-Laconic Talking Head frontman David Byrne narrates this tale of various American eccentrics based on stories you might find int the tabloids. I liked the movie...but loved the Talking Heads soundtrack! I say The Talking Heads were the band of the 80's. My wife does not agree and thinks it's Bon Jovi or something like that.

 David Byrne searches for some real Americans in True Stories

11. The Golden Child-Eddie Murphy comedy about for a chosen one I think it was? It was a big hit, but not really that memorable. My wife says: "It was mostly silly."

12. Gothic-I went through a Ken Russell phase when I first got my VCR. This eccentric dramatization of weird goings on at a chateau with Shelley, Keats, Wollstonecraft etc. that sounds like I need to see again.

13. Sid and Nancy-Rough and tumble, yet somehow endearing biopic of the ill-fated Sex Pistol Sid Vicious and his girlfriend.Nancy Spurgeon is definitely worth seeing. My wife says she hasn't seen it. My friend Mark, on the other hand, was obsessed with this movie and Gary Oldman...So much that he made me watch Track 29!

Gary Oldman probably not singing My Way in Sid and Nancy

14. Ruthless People-Hit comedy about Danny Devito setting up kidnapping of this own wife played by Better Midler. My wife says it was "hilarious and a great movie." I like it too, though I tend to not throw around the word "great" so casually.

15. The Mission-Roland Joffe's epic film about Jesuit missionaries in South America might be a better film to use the "great" label. How did this manage to not be in the of the 1001 book?

16.Troll-From The Mission to Troll...I'd see most anything in 1986, I guess. Not as bad in a fun way as the classic bad movie Troll 2! My wife says:  "I can't believe I missed this one. I saw every horror movie that came out in 1986 and 1987." I guess you missed one.

 The adorable title character in Troll

17. Wildcats-Another one of those 80's Goldie Hawn comedies that I seem to remember nothing about. Luckily, my wife is here to say that  she "Loved it, but wouldn't want to see it again." Mixed signals from her on this one, I'd say.

18.Hoosiers-Inspirational basketball movie with Gene Hackman as the coach is indeed a crowd pleaser, though not nearly as much as the later documentary Hoop Dreams.

19. The Name of the Rose- Considering Umberto Eco's medieval novel about a murder at a monastery is not at all conducive to film adaptation, this film does as pretty decent job of it. Read the book, though...even if you have to kind of thumb through a lot of the Latin. My wife calls the movie "unsettling."

Law and Order: 1327...Sean Connery and Christian Slater in
The Name of the Rose

20. Soul Man-Guy gets minority scholarship by joining a minstrel show. Isn't that what this was about? My wife said she "found it amusing at the time."

21. Sweet Liberty-Seems like Alan Alda directed comedies were on the downslide at this point. It was okay from what I remember. My wife had never heard of it.

22. Peggy Sue Got Married-The time travel movie from this era that wasn't called Back to the Future. This one has virtues of it's own. My wife agrees, but says she "loves it...but still not as good as Back to the Future."

Kathleen Turner going back to the past in
Peggy Sue Got Married

23. Seize the Day-I remember this Robin Williams drama was one of the first things I rented when I got a VCR. I don't remember much of the details of it, but my wife says that she would watch anything with Robin Williams in it.

24. Tough Guys-Gangster film notable for last screen teaming of Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas. That's enough reason to see it right there.

25. Little Shop of Horrors-Fun musical update of the old American International movie is even better if you see it at a cinema and draft house that serves pitchers of margaritas. Just saying. Interestingly, my wife called it "adorable."

Masochist Bill Murray meets sadist Steve Martin in Little Shop of Horrors

26. That's Life-All I remember is a friend took me to see this movie and Jack Lemmon and Julie Andrews were having some sort of middle-aged marriage crisis.

27, The River's Edge-A crazy Dennis Hopper, a crazier Crispin Glover, an unidentified dead body, a blow-up love doll is a combination of which cult classics are made.

28. The Color of Money-Latter day sequel to The Hustler gave an Oscar to Paul Newman that he probably should have won for the original film.

 Paul Newman may or may not throw away his best shot
in The Hustler

29. Down and Out in Beverly Hills-see
My wife called it, "Okay, funny. Wouldn't want to see it again."

I say the dog in the first scene of Down and Out in Beverly Hills looked a lot like my childhood dog, Humphrey.

 My dog Humphrey

Nick Nolte and Humphrey look-alike in
Down and Out in Beverly Hills

30. Something Wild -It took a long time for me to finally see this off-beat Jonathan Demme comedy about a straight-laced businessman getting involved with a woman who is anything but straight laced. It took me awhile to get into it, but I honestly think I would have liked it better if I had seen it 1986. Still worth seeing. My wife did see it in the 80's and described it as "quirky fun." I like that. Let's go with "quirky, fun" then. I did point out to her that this was an early Jonathan Demme film and was saddened to hear that he died later that same week.

Jonathan Demme's Something Wild

That's it for 1986.
That year doesn't seem that long ago, does it?

Sunday, May 21, 2017



Autumn leaves from Paul Schrader's Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters

How do you depict the life of a great writer or poet using a method that is worthy of the uniqueness of their vision? Off-beat depictions of this type include Sergei Parajanov's off-beat biography of poet Sayat Nova, The Color of Pomegrantes or Todd Haynes take on Bob Dylan in I'm Not There. Paul Schrader's Mishima is along those lines as well. It depicts events of writer Yukio Mishima told in flashback, in the context of the four seasons of the title and with dramatizations from Mishima's novels thrown in. And it all seems to make sense somehow! Not exactly the stuff that lends itself to commercial success, but certainly an artistic success for Schrader and a noteworthy entry for the 1001 book.

The apple doesn't fall far from the tree in
Agnes Varda's Vagabond

A different type of non-commercial film in Agnes Varda's Vagabond. Like Mishima, It also is told in flashback of a character that we know has died and the film retraces the steps of the tragic heroine. The movie has an occasional documentary feel with characters in the film describing their encounters with the main character. Her journey is unpleasant even during the best of times, but it's a pretty fascinating...assuming you are in the mood to sit through a such a somber journey.

There were some films that did not make the 1001 movie cut from 1985 that I have seen. Here are a few. I'll also try to determine if I should ever revisit any of these films again.
1.  After Hours-One man's crazy journey through Soho one night made for a fascinating film and a very different trip from Marting Scorcese.
Should I Revisit? I think this would be a very worthwhile revisit.

Griffin Dunne dreams of this night being over in After Hours

2. A Chorus Line-One singular sensation....Seems the musical was more popular on stage than on film from what I remember.
Revisit? More likely I'd see this on the stage.

3. Desperately Seeking Susan-Is this Madonna chick a flash in the pan? Movie didn't do much for me.
Revisit? Hope not
4. Clue-I remember this film based on the board game had several different endings that were all thankfully included together for the video release. Clue got panned when it came out, but it's not without its fans and does have an interesting cast going for it and is okay if you're in the mood for something light.
Revisit? Maybe...and probably more likely for me than it is I'd be revisiting the actual game itself.

Colonel Mustard, Professor Plum and others
dream of being taken seriously in Clue

5. The Emerald Forest-I remember thinking this movie as having a pretty strong environmental statement. Am I remembering that right?
Revist? Maybe if I'm ever in a Powers Boothe/Environmental kind of mood.
6.Fletch-A comedian roasting Chevy Chase once said something like , "Chevy Chase, a man whose career ambition seemed to be making four good films and forty bad ones." Fletch is one of the good ones.
Revist? I'd have to be with someone who says, "Hey, you want to watch Fletch!"

7. Cocoon-An alien culture bringing a fountain of youth of sorts to a group in a retirement home is a fun trip. It has been awhile since I've seen this one.
Revist? I could see watching this desire to see Cocoon II.
Wilfrid Brimley, Hume Cronyn and Don Ameche
 dream of getting that young feeling again
in Cocoon

8. Jewel of the Nile-Let's make an Indiana Jones type movie, but with Michael Douglas and let's give him Kathleen Turner as a leading lady. I think the results were pretty good from what I remember.
Revist? I don't see making an effort to see this again.

9. Jagged Edge-Courtroom drama whose twist and turns I figured out pretty quickly. Others seemed to like it better.
Revisit? Only if I forget who did it. I currently remember.

10. Lost in America-Fun trip in a Winnebago from a couple just trying to be like Easy Rider without being anything really like the guys in Easy Rider.
Revisit? Yes, I'd like to hop on the Winnebago again. 
Yuppies dream of being like Billy and Captain America
in Lost in America

11. The Mean Season-Reminded me of Absence of Malice and I know it had Mariel Hemingway in it. That's about all I remember from it.
 Revist? Don't see it happening.

12. Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment-If you can recount the plotlines of the individual Police Academy movies that you are a better man than I.
Revist? If one of the Clinton family comes by and wants to watch it, I guess I'll pop it in the ole VCR.

13. My Life as a Dog-Swedish coming of age story is still one of my favorite movies of the decade. Why isn't this in the 1001 book?
Revist? It's a knockout! Absolutely!
Kid dreams of being the next Ingemar Johannsson
in My LIfe as a Dog

14. Real Genius-My wife likes this 80's romp more that I do.
 Revist? That one is up to my wife.

15. Return to Oz-Pretty clever touches, but Wizard of Oz is a mighty hard act to follow.
Revist? Probably as likely as my watching The Neverending Story Again.
16. Pee Wee's Big Adventure-The definitive Pee Wee movie. See for a comparison between this film and The Bicycle Thief.
Revist? You should definitely see this one every few years or so.
Grown-up kid dreams of winning the Tour de France
in Pee Wee's Big Adventure

17. Mask-Sad story with Cher as a motorcycle mama raising a kid who suffers from craniodiaphyseal dysplasia. Not to be confused with the later Jim Carrey film, The Mask...not that you probably would.
Revisit? If someone says let's have a Cher or Peter Bogdonavich marathon, I guess.

18. Twice in a Lifetime-You know a movie doesn't leave much of an impression if the only thing you can remember about it is that Brian Dennehy was in it.
Revist? Sorry, this one is only for viewing once in a lifetime.

19. A View to a Kill-Last of the Roger Moore Bonds and not the best of the film series, but I think Roger was a most capable Bond...even though he has a lot of haters.
Revist? If I ever want to have a Bond marathon, A View to a Kill wouldn't be all that high on the list.
Roger Moore dreams of being as beloved as Sean Connery
in A View to a Kill

20. Witness-Nice detective story and interesting incorporation of the Amish people into the storyline.
Revist? Even though I like the film and have only seen it once, I really don't have that great a desire to watch it again...maybe I'll just find the scene on YouTube where the undercover Harrison Ford posing goes all radical Mennonite and punches out a jerk.

21. Rocky IV-Starts off well with James Brown and Apollo Creed...but then just disintegrates once Rocky starts training to fight the Russian.
 Revist? If I can change and you can change..everybody can change, but I ain't watching this one again.

22. Boggy Creek II: And the Legend Continues-The trilogy is...The strange original, which is worth seeing just for it's oddness. The awful Return to Boggy Creek, which does at least have Dawn Wells in it and a reformed Boggy Creek monster. Boggy Creek II is numbered II even though it is the third one. It is best seen in the guise of an MST3K episode. I know there have been recent movies with Boggy Creek in the title, but I'll leave those for study by future students of campy films.
Revist?  I just did and my Boggy Creek trilogy marathon is now complete.

Rustic auteur Charles B. Pierce probably dreamed his Boggy Creek II
had been respected enough not to be lampooned on MST3K

23. White Nights-Interesting (to me) two of the three main movies I saw during this period at the Plaza Theater featured Gregory Hines. Not sure how I missed going to see Wolfen or Running Scared there.
Revisit: I'll let it remain a Plaza Theater memory. (see below)

24. A Nightmare on Elm Street II: Freddy’s Revenge-Can't remember the details of this one...maybe need some kind of dream therapy.
Revist? -Only if I want to see every movie in this other words...I doubt it.

25. Runaway Train
I just watched this one. A good action piece about a couple of escaped convicts on a...well, a runaway train. It also boasts good performances from Jon Voight and Eric Roberts as the escapees.Interesting that both of them were Oscar nominated for this action flick...and deserved to be. Also give credit to director Andrei Konchalovsky for the solid pacing and a cabal of writers, including future Reservoir Dog Eddie Bunker! It's also interesting that this is also based on an earlier screenplay from Akira Kurosawa. I'm sure this helped with the films success (Artistically anyway!)

Jon Voight dreams of escape on the Runaway Train

The legendary Plaza Theater in Atlanta

I got my first apartment in Atlanta in 1985. One of my memories of that year was the just down the street Plaza Theater on Ponce De Leon Road. The theater (I liked to sit in the balcony) is forever ingrained in my head with that year. I remember (by advertisements in the newspaper, mind you) that this was an X-rated movie theater in the 70's. (Apparently, my memory of one ad is correct and there really was a 70's porno movie called Creme de Banana playing there!).

The theater was located next to the Plaza Drug pharmacy, which showed the same commercial on late night TV of a family from the 1950's well into the late 70's. On the other side was the all-night eaterie, Dobie's Good Foods, which was a good place for a late night 1985 cheeseburger.

The theater itself is still there, but it will always be the place I got lost in After Hours at a late night showing and White Nights as a matinee and entered The Cotton Club the year before. I didn't see that many movies there, but the memory is strong with this one.

The legendary Plaza Drugs pharmacy in Atlanta

Sunday, May 14, 2017


Harry Dean Stanton and Natassja Kinski in
Paris, Texas

Jim Jarmusch's Stranger Than Paradise

1984 in film had it's share of blockbusters (Beverly Hills Cop, Ghostbusters, The Terminator), big sequels (Star Trek III, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom), popular kid stuff (Gremlins, The Karate Kid, Footloose) and silly comedies (Police Academy, Revenge of the Nerds). In retrospect, the year also gave us some good small, independent films, two of which are listed above.

Wim Wenders's Paris, Texas is the story of a middle-aged drifter named Travis who is reunited with his brother and son after Travis's whereabouts have been unknown for a number of years. Much of the plot involves the unraveling of what has happened to him, and what he wants and needs. The search for his missing wife is a big part of the equation, too. I  love the scenes with estranged couple Harry Dean Stanton and  Natassja Kinski communicating through glass at a strip club. I saw this movie years ago and quickly got caught up in the storyline once again.

I like Jim Jarmusch's Stranger Than Paradise a lot. The story has three main characters: two buddies and their Hungarian born female friend. (Jarmusch later used a trio of main characters in Down by Law). The trio go from New York in the first scene to Cleveland in the middle act and wind up in Florida for the finale. There is a plot involving gambling theft, which does set their travels in motion, but it is the character study that is so biting here. We see shades of human frailty, avarice, and even a bit of growth for our trio at times. I liked the ending as well, though I can see where the unresolved nature of it all may leave some frustrated.

There were some films that did not make the 1001 movie cut from 1984 that I have seen. Here are a few. I'll also try to determine if I should ever revisit any of these films again.

1. 1984-One of the best and certainly best know of all Dystopian novels has been brought to the screen before the year in question. Some may prefer the 1950's television version with Peter Cushing as Winston Smith or the 1956 theatrical version with Edmond O'Brien. The 1984 version of 1984 successfully re-creates the paranoia and otherworldliness of the book. However, viewing will be no substitute for not reading the original novel in this case. There will be a test later!
Should I revisit? 2017 makes 1984 required viewing.

John Hurt as Winston Smith in 1984
2. 2010-The movie from 1984 named after a different year had the thankless job of being a sequel to Kubrick's unsurpassed classic 2001: A Space Odyssey. However, when viewed on its on terms, this Peter Hyams/Arthur C. Clarke collaboration is a fine film in its own right.
Revisit? Not sure, but I am hoping to read all the books in this Arthur C. Clarke series...2061, 3001 and maybe another year I missed.

3. All of Me-Lily Tomlin possesses Steve Martin's body and the comedy skills of these actors is what makes this an amusing film. It has a while since I've seen this one...opinions may change.
Revisit? Not unless I have a Steve Martin marathon where I have to see everything he made. (Not ruling that out!)

4. Bachelor Party-"Better than Animal House!" a friend of mine told me before I ever saw this Tom Hanks slob comedy. He was wrong. It wasn't better than Animal House.
Revisit? Don't see it happening. Will probably watch Animal House again instead.

5. Blood Simple-Good reviews got me to got to the theater to view this low-budget film noir from these new filmmakers called the Coen Brothers. I've seen all their films ever since.
Revisit? New Criterion release equals another viewing in the near future.

 Ubiquitous character actor M. Emmett Walsh in Blood Simple

6. Blame it on Rio-Sex comedy featuring a young Demi Moore and an aging lothario played by Michael Caine. It think they played daughter and father and Caine was dating a friend of hers...or something like that.
Revisit? This was a one shot only.

7. Broadway Danny Rose-Woody Allen's period of quality films from the 80's continued with this black and white comedy about a talent agent who gets involved with nefarious criminals and second rate acts.
 Revisit? I think it's worth another go...if it isn't, Woody's films are real short in any case.

 8. The Cotton Club-Francis Ford Coppola's gangster film is often compared to his earlier The Godfather in and usually ends with the conclusion that it isn't nearly as good as The Godfather. It's not without appealing moments, especially from the dance scenes featuring Gregory Hines.
Revisit? I think I'd probably spend that time re-watching The Godfather instead...or Animal House.
 9. Body Double-Criticized for being misogynistic and yet another Hitchcock rip-off from director Brian DePlama, I still like this film enough after all these years enough to own a copy.
Revisit?  It's on my shelf...I probably will

 Deborah Shelton has an unwelcome visitor
in Body Double

10. Dreamscape-If you die in your dreams, will you die in real life? A good thriller, but may pale a bit in comparison right after you've seen Inception.
 Revisit? I did watch it again a couple of years ago...that will have to do for this life.

11. Footloose-No dancing in this town! I remember when this came out, there was a criticism that it was just trying to piggyback off the success of the earlier dance movie Flashdance. But what do you know that Footloose has had more ultimate staying power than the earlier film!
Revisit?  I think its more likely I might see a stage version.

12. The Brother From Another Planet-Strange little sci-fi from director John Sayles about an escaped slave from another planet that I liked when it was first released.
Revisit? After reading the description of it and being reminded what this is about, this one would definitely be worth another look.

13. Give My Regards to Broadstreet-I'm a big Beatles fan and usually will try anything Beatles related, but I don't know what Paul McCartney was thinking with this one which was about...I'm...just...not...really...sure. At least it has some good songs.
Revisit? Despite the fact that I saw a website that said Give My Regards to Broadstreet was a lot better than you may remember, I don't see it happening.

Paul McCartney dressed as...I'm guessing a skunk of some kind?
in Give My Regards to Broad Street

14. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom-Often labeled as the weakest Indiana Jones film, I think after a recent viewing that that assessment may be unfair. I found it a pretty good adventure film. It doesn't have Karen Allen, which is a problem.
Revisit? I already revisited once a couple of years ago...that may have to suffice, Shorty!
15. Irreconcilable Differences-Drew Barrymore divorces her parents Shelley Long and Ryan O'Neal.
Revisit? No. Just no.

16. Johnny Dangerously-I like Joe Piscopo more than some do, but I can't remember too much to recommend this gangster comedy other than there is a song by Weird Al Yankovic.
Revisit? I saw this movie once...ONCE!

17. Choose Me-This low budget drama I remember really liking...any movie with Genevieve Bujold as a late night DJ has that going for it right off the bat.
Revisit?  Definitely

That sexy voice of Genevieve Bujold (and the rest of her)
in Choose Me

18. The Lonely Guy-It's tough to be lonely...not the best of the Steve Martin comedies, though I tend to like most everything Steve Martin is in.
Revisit? See comment under All of Me

19. Moscow on the Hudson-One of the early examples of Robin Williams showing off his dramatic chops in a Paul Mazursky dramedy about a Russian stateside.
Revisit? Yeah, I think so.

20. The NeverEnding Story-Creative, fantastical adventure and the favorite movie of at least two people I know.
Revisit? We recently did a book group on the Michael Ende book. I was planning to watch it again...but ended up only watching the music video of the opening song by Limahl!
21. Crimes of Passion-Underrated and kinky Ken Russell film featuring Kathleen Turner and Anthony Perkins.
Revisit? Yes. Just have to decide if it's part of a Kathleen Turner marathon, Tony Perkins marathon or Ken Russell marathon. Or maybe I'll just watch Animal House again.
Kathleen Turner examines the merchandise in Crimes of Passion
22. Night of the Comet-Cute teenage end of the world movie that I remember watching a few years ago with my son and niece.
Revisit? Only if Kara and Collin come into town and want to watch it.

23. Police Academy-Speaking of never ending stories...I guess this long running film series actually did have a beginning.
Revisit? Only if Bill Clinton comes into town and wants to watch it.

24. Protocol-One of those cute 80's comedies about Goldie Hawn going to Washington and...and...what was this about again?
Revisit? I'm not interested enough to look up in Wikipedia the synopsis of Protocol, let alone watch it again.

25. Master Ninja-Really a failed Lee Van Cleef pilot and subsequent episode smushed together seemingly for the sole purpose of being lampooned later on Mystery Science Theater.
Revisit? MST episodes are always a possibly for a rewatch.

 I think it's interesting that someone
actually took the time to make
 some Master Ninja artwork

26. The Razor's Edge-"I never understood gluttony." Bill Murray does Somerset Maugham with pretty interesting results.
Revisit? Probably only in conjunction with reading the book.

27. Revenge of the Nerds-It was nice to see the nerds get their revenge at the time.
Revisit? Though glad to see the nerds get their revenge, I don't really need to see them do it again.

 28. Repo Man-Cult film about car repossessors, aliens and featuring a cranky Harry Dean Stanton.
Revisit? Did someone say Harry Dean Stanton film festival?

  Emilio Estevez and Harry Dean Stanton get ready to do some
repossesin' in Repo Man
29. Red Dawn-The cast of Dirty Dancing and other brat packers take on the Russkies. Proves that not all 1984 movies with Harry Dean Stanton were good.
Revisit? No. But do need to watch The Russians are Coming! The Russians are Coming! as soon as possible.

30. Romancing the Stone-First of a couple of fun adventure movies with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner.
Revisit? Probably not...though watching Kathleen Turner during this period isn't an idea without a certain appeal.
31. Sixteen Candles-An important movie to the generation that graduated high school four years after me.
Revisit? Only if my wife asks me to. She did make me watch Real Genius and Pretty in Pink, so there is some precedent here.

32. Splash-Ron Howard film about a mermaid that really helped make Tom Hanks a star was a big hit...but I just remember thinking it was only so so.
 Revisit? I might like it better if I saw it again. I'll think about it.

33. Star Trek III: The Search for Spock-Clever entry in the Star Trek film series that found a way to bring back Spock.
Revisit? I'd have to see Wrath of Khan first.

I have been and ever shall be your friend...Star Trek III

34. Supergirl-Superhero movie that I only watched because it was on a VHS tape that was handy. I think this was only made in the first place because Christopher Reeve wasn't around.
Revisit? Not likely
35. Teachers-Not a bad dramedy about inner city teachers with Nick Nolte.
Revisit? I liked it, but don't particularly desire to go to school again.
36. Thief of Hearts-This was a chick flick about a guy who stole hearts and redecorated kitchens and I also remember it had George Wendt in it.
Revisit? I cannot imagine a scenario where I would watch Thief of Hearts again.
37. Stop Making Sense-Concert film of The Talking Heads that was one of the first things I checked out from the video store when I got my new VCR. It was about the only thing my friend Mark wanted to rent for awhile!
Revisit? Only if Mark comes into town and want to watch it.
 David Byrne of The Talking Heads dances while wearing
an oversized suit in Stop Making Sense
38. Tightrope-Clint Eastwood cop movie that was a little less over the top than Dirty Harry from what I remember.
Revisit-I wouldn't rule it out if I get on Clint kick...which is more likely after reading American Rebel: The Life of Clint Eastwood by Marc Eliot.

39. Unfaithfully Yours-Those halcyon days of lighthearted Dudley Moore comedy vehicles were probably fairly amusing but left no lasting impression.
Revisit-Revisit what?
40. Purple Rain-It took me thirty years to finally see this famous Prince semi-autobiographical film. The songs like When Doves Cry and the title song have been part of popular culture since release. The movie itself is about Prince's rough relationship with his family, his struggles with getting his music onstage and his relationship with an attractive hanger named Apollonia (Strangely enough played by an actress named Apollonia!) Not a classic by any means, but an undeniably impressive showcase for the talent of the star at his peak.
Revisit-It took me thirty years to watch, but I'll watch again. (If my wife asks me, of course)

Prince as the Kid in Purple Rain