Context is King

Disclaimer: I am wholeheartedly aboard the #MeToo train. Hell, I’m a feminist snowflake, if that’s the language you want to use. Our sisters, daughters, mothers, and friends deserve better, quite frankly. However, I also acknowledge when “cancel culture” goes too far. Political Correctness usually has the noblest of intentions, but now and then it gets in the way, and creates division where there has previously been none. Case in point: the song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.”

Watch this video.

Here are the first two times this song was ever recorded for distribution, from the 1949 film “Neptune’s Daughter.” We start with Ester Williams and Ricardo Freakin’ Montalban (!) doing the version we all know…the wolfish male predator and his hesitant quarry. Okay, yeah. It looks really bad. When he grabs her arm…repeatedly…to prevent her escape…oof. Not a good look. At least in the radio versions, like Dean Martin’s 1959 rendition, or the (far superior) Margaret Whiting and Johnny Mercer version from 1949, we don’t actually see the couple. We can imagine that she really does want to stay, but feels guilty, because people back in the late-40’s and 50’s were completely repressed, and slut-shaming was rampant…like, he’s almost doing her a favor in making the decision for her. Still, when you see Ricardo essentially chase her around the room, it’s a little unsettling to modern eyes.

And then we get to observe the other couple, and, uh…well, now!

I mean, come on! Showing her KNEE! Like some shameless HUSSY!

From the same film, we see Red Skelton doing a cartoonishly bad accent, and the tables have turned…his lusty adversary is Betty Garrett, and she demands, like any liberated woman, to have her needs met, by God. Years later, in her powerful “Don’t Leave Me This Way,” Thelma Houston expressed her similar desire thusly:

 

“Oh baby, my heart is full of love and desire for you

Now, come on down and do what you’ve got to do…”

 

Do what you’ve got to do. Yes. TELL HIM, SISTER!! That was the disco-clad Sexual Revolution in the Swinging’ 70’s, but even then, fairly bold. A woman? Demanding sexual gratification from her mate?! CLUTCH THOSE PEARLS!!
“Okay, great…but what’s your point? That we should forgive Montalban’s character for his aggressive courtship?” Well, no. Not entirely. But we have to realize that A) it was a wayyyyy different time and B) the scene exists primarily as a way to set up the much more comedic scene which follows. The Red Skelton stuff would have been somewhat humorous in and of itself…but after seeing the “male” version, it’s even more impactful when Betty Garrett throws her conquest on the couch…sits on him…and turns out the light. She’s in complete control, and there’s not a damn thing Red can do about it. And as a viewer, we all sort of agree that he really doesn’t want to anyway. And, ultimately, as things tended to do in the screwball comedies of yesteryear, everything worked out, and both couples found love. Here’s the official “Neptune’s Daughter” synopsis from IMDB:
 
Scatterbrained Betty Barrett mistakes masseur Jack Spratt for Jose O’Rourke, the captain of the South American polo team. Spratt goes along with the charade, but the situation becomes more complicated when they fall in love. Meanwhile, Betty’s sensible older sister Eve fears Betty’s heart will be broken when Jose returns to South America. She arranges to meet with the real O’Rourke and love soon blossoms between them as well.
 
This brief description leaves out that Eve is an aquatic dancer (hence the movie’s title) and that she’s actually partnered with a man (the omnipresent Keenan Wynn) in a swimwear company. Partnered. Equal. She is, by 1940’s standards, a powerful, professional woman. Athletic, smart, cunning, and protective of her younger sister. Does it make Ricardo’s Jose O’Rourke (his character’s actual name, and Beto O’Rourke is totally biting his rhyme, yo) any less creepy? Not really. But it implies that Eve was more than capable of fending for herself. And that makes a huge difference; she’s not some meek little virgin, not some naive waif who simply doesn’t stand a chance against the machismo of a young Khan Noonien Singh. (And who among us can truly say that? Not I. I’m a 49-year-old heterosexual male, but if he wanted to chase me ’round the moons of Nibia and ’round the Antares Maelstrom, well, heck…no mere mortal can resist such masculinity, especially if it smells of rich Corinthian leather.) I digress. Okay, in conclusion, I’ll simply say that yeah, “no” means “no.” Still. But it’s never wise to take isolated incidents out of context. Do the homework. Read the entire article. Watch the interview. Consider everything before leaping to condemn. And above all, relax, people. Have fun. Kiss him or her. If they slap your face, stop. Pretty simple.
 
Enjoy the holidays, everyone.

Hollywood Scuttlebeat!

I’m running out of clever names for these fake celebrity news blogs, so sorry for the lame header.  But goddammit, these are so much fun.  Let’s dive right in to the fake movie stuff…

Royal Reboot for Kiwi!

The non-stop runaway success story that is New Zealand’s wunderkind Lorde doesn’t show any signs of slowing down!  The teenage pop sensation recently signed on for the long-rumored reboot of 80’s teen flick  “Say Anything.”  Of course, curious readers would assume that Lorde would be recreating the role of Diane Court, originally made famous by Ione Skye in the original 1989 classic.  Not so fast!

lorde

Lorde models the prototype GHEToBlstr mp3 player (designed by Beats by Dre) that plays a key role in the film.

“Well, that was the original idear, but when they came to me and offered me the paht, I toold ’em straight away that it was the lead or nuthin’!”  Yes, movie buffs, it’s the ol’ gender switch-a-roo, with Lorde playing the part of Layne Dobler, a troubled young skate rat who desperately tries to woo the out-of-her league male love interest (rumored to be Josh Hutcherson.)  “I figger I’m almost Australian, so should be right spry enough a catty-wampus to dinkum’ up a todger all owly-like!”  Amen to that, sister!  Shooting for the newly-titled #NEthing begins this summer.

 

Ryan Reynolds Racing Reprise!

ryan goofy

It’s been a hit-or-miss few years for heartthrob and abdominal muscle Ryan Reynolds.  But it looks like that luck is changing, as Ry-Ry has signed to lend his voice to a sequel to the Netflix hit kid’s movie “Turbo.”  The project got the go-ahead when Dreamworks purchased iPhone game maker Republic of Fun after their recent bankruptcy.  The game studio had a modest hit of sorts with ‘Slug Wars’ for mobile devices and tablets.  Could that be a hint of things to come for America’s favorite gastropod and his pals?

“Well, obviously we’re taking Turbo in a bold new direction.  The initial thought was to do it as a prequel, show all the snails as babies.  Then we realized that they would all be terribly slow babies.  And it just got weird,” Reynolds recently told reporters.  “But with the recent rights to the title [Slug Wars] we’re going to have the wacky bunch of slimy molluscs actually join the War on Terror.  There’ll be a lot of NSA-style commentary and the Patriot Act gets sort of scrutinized and it’s just a great way for kids to learn about how the government really does have their best interests at stake.  I mean, the shell, right?  The shell on Turbo’s back is a great analogy for personal privacy or something.  I don’t know, really.  I haven’t read the script, but hey…freedom, right?”  We couldn’t have said it better!

Jurassic Sam?

One voice from the first film that will likely be missing from Turbo 2:  Slug Wars [working title] will be that of veteran actor Samuel L. Jackson.  Of course, Jackson is no novice when it comes to voice-acting, and has been featured in numerous animated flicks.  No, the real reason why the classy Sammy J might miss out on the fun this time around is due to a crazy busy schedule that has the actor moving…and might just have him running from prehistoric monsters!

"This is how I imagine Mr. Arnold looks now.  See, he ain't got time for yo' sh*t."  - Sam Jackson

“This is how I imagine Mr. Arnold looks now. See, he ain’t got time for yo’ sh*t.” – Sam Jackson

That’s right, you heard it here first:  20th Century Fox is working on a super-big super-secret project that is rumored to involve a return to Jurassic Park!  Jackson has been fairly tight-lipped, but let the following slip during the Red Carpet during the London premiere of Captain America: Winter Soldier…

“I mean, here’s Mr. Arnold, right?  Smokin’ cigarettes and sh*t right there at the computer.  G*d d*amn, that’s some hard-core sh*t right there.  You know right away that he’s a bad mother f*cker, maybe the baddest on that motherf*ckin’ island.  So he goes to turn on the power, and it’s like ‘a skinny-a*s velociraptor gonna take him out?’  H*ll, no!  You know he’s out there somewhere, waitin’ to pop a cap in some dino’s a*s.”

But what about the fact that Mr. Arnold has obviously lost an arm to the dangerous dinos?

“Did you see this motherf*ckin’ movie right here? [CA:TWS]  Bucky got him a motherf*ckin’ robot arm.  That’s some serious sh*t right there.  I mean, motherf*cker catches Cap’s f*ckin’ SHIELD with that thing!  Now, here’s Mr. Arnold, right?  He’s lost an arm, but they got all kinds of science sh*t on that island.  Who’s to say he didn’t grow it back?  Clone it or some sh*t?  Or maybe he’s just that bad-a*s that he only needs one arm.  H*ll, Nick Fury only got one eye, right?  You gonna f*ck with Fury?  Didn’t think so.  Nah, Arnold is out there.  Maybe he swims to Costa Rica or some god d*amn place.  All’s I know is that they wanna make a movie, and I aim to be in that mother f*cker.”

Sounds like we’re all taking a welcome return to Jurassic Park sooner than we think!

 

[NEXT WEEK IN CELBRI-NOOZ: SPIELBERG DISHES ON HIS LATEST PROJECT! “IT’S NOT GODD*AM JURASSIC PARK, SO QUIT ASKING.”]

Criswell PREDICTS!!

Well, crap…it’s 2014.  Sorry for my longer-than-usual absence, but I’ve had a few extra irons added to my fire, and let’s be honest: the holidays are a time for laying around in your pajama pants and drinking too much.  I got rather stinky over the last few weeks.  Like, literally.  I reek.  I have therefore decided to pull myself out of this torpor, wash the stink from my body and cobwebs from my mind, and hop back on the ol’ horse.

This blog is also a sort of two-pronged celebration.  Not only is it my first blog of the new year, but also it technically happens to be my 100th post.  How ’bout that?  To commemorate these two waypoints, I’ve enlisted the help of the Amazing Criswell!!  This was exceedingly difficult, as Criswell passed away in 1982.  But don’t trouble your pretty little head with the science behind this feat.  Simply sit back and enjoy the dead “psychic” and his astounding, remarkable predictions for the new year!  PREPARE TO BE AMAZED!!

criswell-predicts-3[1]

CRISWELL PREDICTS…that in the coming year, these all shall come to pass!

At a family get-together, your great-uncle will warn everyone that they’re all about to be mustard-gassed.  His prediction will come true!  Having eaten way too many brats with spicy Koop’s Horseradish Mustard, he will totally bust ass right in the middle of a post-cookout game of Euchre.

Worst. Memorial Day.  Ever.

Worst. Memorial Day. Ever.

On or about the same date…perhaps in July…you will awaken from a drunken stupor at a friend’s house to find (TO YOUR HORROR!!) that you are clad simply in jorts and a t-shirt bearing an airbrushed likeness of Dale Jarrett.  You will have NO MEMORY of how this came to pass!!

For a period of about twenty-six days in early Autumn, people will decide that “peg rolling” jeans is “a thing again.”  BEWARE THE HIPSTERS!!

Sadly, this is a pretty likely outcome.

Sadly, this is a pretty likely outcome.

In 2014 Jimmy Fallon will become the UNDISPUTED KING OF LATE NIGHT TELEVISION!!  (Editor’s note:  this is actually the most likely outcome, and not really a stretch as far as “predicting.”)

In March of this year…you will REMEMBER WHERE YOU KNOW THAT ONE GUY FROM!!

In time for the Oscars, it will be revealed that GEORGE CLOONEY IS GAY!!  And his lover will be revealed to be none other than THE AMAZING CRISWELL!!  (Editor’s note:  this is nothing more than wishful thinking.)

Pictured:  proof of nothing.

(Editor’s note: upon further review…)

“Fishing for ground muffins” will be a slang phrase that catches on with the kids.  It will either mean “pooping on a picnic table” or “voting for an unlikely Democratic challenger in a Tea Party state.”

TERRORISTS will attack a DISCOTHEQUE!  But because it will be a “DISCOTHEQUE” and not a “NIGHTCLUB” people in the United States won’t care a lick!

In 2014, you will discover that the girl you had a crush on back in 1998 has gotten TOTALLY FAT!!

This year scientists will discover that over-exposure to the sun’s rays actually FIGHTS harmful skin cancer.  The scientific community will offer a collective “Our bad!”  (Editor’s note:  I find this not only highly unlikely, it’s pretty irresponsible if you ask me.)

Pictured:  The HEALTHIEST WOMAN ALIVE!!

Pictured: The HEALTHIEST WOMAN ALIVE!!

Finally…before the end of 2014, the AMAZING CRISWELL will become mayor of Los Angeles just in time to welcome our NEW ALIEN OVERLORDS and their King, ANDY DICK!!

That One Guy: Black Hawk Down Edition

I got into a discussion with my boss the other day about the events depicted in the movie “Black Hawk Down.”  We’d been discussing how October 3rd through the 4th marked the twenty-year anniversary of the so-called “Battle of Mogadishu.”  Twenty years.  Mark Bowden’s book, upon which the movie was based, was published in 1999.   Ridley Scott’s incredible movie adaptation hit theaters in December of 2001.

I re-watched the movie on Netflix, and was reminded of what a damn fine piece of filmmaking the thing really is.   It reminds me of the classic 1977 film “A Bridge Too Far.”  That movie (itself an adaptation of a nonfiction book which chronicled the events of the failed Operation: Market-Garden during the Second World War) managed to weave several different storylines together into one wonderfully exciting and heartbreaking narrative.  And it did so with one of the largest casts of movie superstars at the time, including Gene Hackman, Robert Redford, Sean Connery, Anthony Hopkins, etc. without any one of them overshadowing the story.

Speaking of large casts…as I watched Black Hawk Down again, I was struck by the sheer number of people that I had forgotten about; yet there they were, happily running alongside Humvees and such.  I began Tweeting about it and quickly had to Tweet a second time,  a third time, then a fourth.  So I decided to blog it up and put all of the guys that I could recognize in one easy-to-browse location. We’ll begin with the obvious, big-name actors, then the so-called “character” guys who you’ve seen in a million different shows and movies…and then we’ll end up with the “WOW!!  HOLY SHIT!!” guys. (WARNING:  you may wear out your scroll wheel.)

Josh Hartnett, Eversmann

josh hartnettThis dude was supposed to blow up, wasn’t he?  Then he did Pearl Harbor, and…and…

Ewan McGregor, Grimes

wean mcgregorHe mainly made coffee then got knocked down.  I know he’s Obi-Wan now, but to me he’ll always be Mark Renton.

Tom Sizemore, McKnight

tom sizemoreThis was a couple of years before Tom went batshit crazy and did a bunch of drugs and lived with Heidi Fleiss.  Ah, the good ol’ days.

Eric Bana, Hoot

eric banaBefore he was the lamest Bruce Banner ever, he was a Delta hard-ass.  (Also?  My late uncle Myron was nicknamed ‘Hoot’ and he trained soldiers to jump out of airplanes.  Coincidence?)

Orlando Bloom, Blackburn

orlando bloomHe’s become a pretty big star thanks to the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ and ‘Lord of the Rings’ franchises, but in this film he basically falls out of a helicopter.

Jeremy Piven, Wolcott

jeremy pivenYes, Ari Gold.  Hug it out, bitches.

Ron Eldard, Durant

ron eldardI’ve always enjoyed Ron’s work, from sitcoms with David Spade to the enjoyable role of Skank Martin in ‘Mystery Alaska’ to the alcoholic dad in ‘Super 8.’  The odd thing is that of all the big names in this movie, one of the most important roles (in my opinion) ends up in his capable hands.  Good stuff

Kim Coates, Wex

kim coatesNowadays we know him as Tig from ‘Sons of Anarchy’ but the dude has 120 credits to his name, according to IMDB.  Yes, you actually HAVE seen him in everything.

Ewen Bremner, Nelson

ewen bremnerSpud.  He will always be Spud.  I wonder whether it was Ewan McGregor, his ‘Trainspotting’ co-star or Josh Hartnett, his ‘Pearl Harbor’ co-star that got him this gig…

Sam Shepard, Garrison

sam shepardA veteran character actor who seems to specialize in authority figures, he’s also an accomplished playwright and stage performer.  But he’ll always be Chuck Yeager to me.  “Hey, Ridley…got any Beeman’s on ya?”

Ioan Gruffudd, Beales

ioan gruffuddYes, Mr. Fantastic.  Also, the “Is anyone out there?” lifeboat guy from Titanic.  In this movie, he has a seizure.  That’s about it, really.

Jason Isaacs, Steele

jason isaacsAlways plays an asshole.  Always.  Hooah?

William Fichtner, Sanderson

william fichtner

Yes, THAT guy.  The blind guy in ‘Contact.’  The shuttle pilot that wanted to shake the hand of the daughter something-something-Bruce Willis-something in ‘Armageddon.’  The guy in the bank at the beginning of ‘The Dark Knight.’  Yeah.  THAT guy.

Glenn Morshower, Matthews

glenn morshowerAlways plays a colonel or something.  Always.  CoD fans will remember him as the voice of the SatCom guy in Modern Warfare II.  He may actually be Jim Gaffigan from the future.

Richard Tyson, Busch

richard tysonThis guy has been a a ton of crap and ‘Kindergarten Cop’ where he played the bad dad.  Also, he’s been in lighter fare like ‘There’s Something About Mary.’  His hair in this particular movie was modeled on a 1977 Luke Skywalker poster or a He-Man action figure.

Gregory Sporleder, Galentine

gregory sporlederA very recognizable dude, he’s been in everything from a Sheryl Crow video to ‘The Rock’ where he appeared as one of the bad guys.

George Harris, Atto

george harrisOne of the few non-soldiers that has a speaking part.  You may remember him as Captain Katanga, the dude that basically SAVES INDY AND MARION RAVENWOOD WHEN NAZIS BOARD HIS SHIP!!!!   Yes, that’s him.  The swarthy tramp steamer captain from ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark.’

Ty Burrell, Wilkinson

ty burrellOkay, now we’re getting weird.  Yes, that’s the guy from ‘Modern Family.’  Think that’s odd?  Keep scrolling…

Brian Van Holt, Struecker

brian van holt

He’s on ‘Cougar town’ now, but he was also in SWAT (the movie) and some other things that mainly chicks would know.

Tom Guiry, Yurek

tom guiryYOU’RE KILLING ME, SMALLS!! Yes, that’s him.  Scotty Smalls from ‘The Sandlot.’  Wait, it gets weirder…

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Gordon

nikolaj coster-waldauJaime. Fucking. Lannister.  And yes, he had great hair even then.

Tom Hardy, Twombly

tom hardyTom Hardy.  ‘Nuff said.

So, who did I miss?  Yeah, I know there are some support people and such.  Maybe I missed one of the villagers or medics.  If so, leave a comment below!  We’ll have to add a whole second page, maybe!  And for shits and giggles, go back and watch this movie again. It’s a great flick, and it’s a lot more fun when you can play ‘spot that one guy!’

Celbri-Doodle-Dandy!

I know I’m supposed to posting new blogs based on the feedback I got a week or so ago when I solicited ideas from you, and I promise to get right back to it (and, hey?  Look at me with, what?  Three blogs in less than a week?) but the overload of celebrity-news crap that started with the Affleck-as-Batman bombshell and petered out with Mileygate, I felt it was my duty to keep up.  Besides, some of you really dig these fake celebrity scandal write-ups.  So let’s dive in!

Mindy’s Major Moxie Mission!!

This is what Renée Zellweger will look like in five more years.

CORRECTION: this is actually a picture of Renée Zellweger from the future.

Full-figured voice actress and former child star Mindy Cohn is hoping to revamp her Hollywood career by following in the sexy footsteps of Britney Spears, Selena Gomez, and most recently, Miley Cyrus, by putting on what has been described as “one sexy Vaudevillian burlesque!” at an upcoming awards show or Kroger grand opening.

“I’m just waiting for my opportunity to show the world what I got!  ‘Cause I got a lot…and it’s all HOT!!”  says the plus-sized vixen. Cohn has been working on a “suitably shocking” routine while working around her ongoing gig as the voice of Velma on the successful Scooby-Doo Mystery, Inc.  “We’re just waiting to hear back from either the Golden Globes or the new Kroger Supercenter in Studio City.  Whatever’s going to give us the most exposure for my exposure, if you catch my drift!”  Oh, we read you loud and clear, lady!  Loud and clear!

The Diceman Cometh to Tarantino Sequel!

ADC answers questions at the press meeting for Reservoir Dogs 2

ADC answers questions at the press meeting for Reservoir Dogs 2

Hot on the heels of the longtime funnyman’s surprise dramatic turn in Woody Allen’s Blue Jasmine, the bombastic Andrew Dice Clay has already landed another high-profile project: the eagerly-anticipated sequel to Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs, tentatively titled Reservoir Dogs 2: Nice Guys Finish Last.  “It’s a blast!  Who knew, right?  Last flick I done, I get to work with a classy broad like Cate Blancett, who, you know…she’s English or some sh*t, so that’s class, buddy.  Class for days, am I rite?  And now?  Now I get to work with Stephen Baldwin AND that guy from Scrubs! [John C. McGinley, rumored] Unfrigginbelievable!”  Of course, some Hollywood types are taking a wait-and-see attitude towards Clay’s sudden cinematic chops.  Tarantino himself released the following statement:

“I’m so angry right now. Angry at myself for stupid rookie mistakes I made when we first shot Reservoir Dogs, my first film.  I stupidly overlooked a couple of loopholes when we signed the distribution rights, and now I’m powerless to stop this train wreck of a cluster-f*ck.  For starters, the title?  Apparently that’s a reference to Nice Guy Eddie, the character from the first film.  My problem?  Nice Guy Eddie is DEAD at the end of the movie, and the guy that played him is ALSO DEAD.  Hey, spoiler alert, assh*les:  EVERYONE DIES BUT MR. PINK!!  There can’t be a f*cking sequel!”

There has been no response from the studio, and the film remains in pre-production.

The Amazing Spider-Abs!

Your friendly neighborhood...um...JUST GET IN ME, C-TATES!!

Your friendly neighborhood…um…JUST GET IN ME, C-TATES!!

In a bombshell announcement that rocked the world of geek-culture for the second time in as many weeks, Columbia Pictures announced a bold last-minute re-casting of one of comicdom’s most popular characters.  With only weeks of production left on The Amazing Spider-Man 2 as the cast and crew strive for a May 2014 release date, the lead role of Peter Parker (who famously dons the mask as Marvel’s web-slinger) has been given the ol’ switcheroo.  Out is Andrew Garfield (The Social Network) who took over the red-and-blue tights for the first big reboot (The Amazing Spider-Man, 2012) and in is current it-boy and panty-dampener Channing Tatum.  The studio explained the sudden casting change this way:

“As much as we love Andrew, the test audiences just wanted someone ‘bulgier’ and ‘hotter.’  Plus, once the guys at Warner Brothers hit us with that Ben Affleck casting news, we knew we had to amp up the sex appeal in a big way.  I mean…have you seen the abs on C-Tates?!”  Tatum is no stranger to last-minute reshoots.  The release of G.I. Joe: Retaliation was delayed by a year in order to add more delicious Channing Tatum beefcake.  The same sort of frenzied shooting schedule is expected for the Spidey sequel if the studio sticks to its May release.

[NEXT WEEK IN CELBRI-NOOZ: STUDIO HEAD RECEIVES MASSIVE NUMBER OF DEATH-THREATS FROM ANGRY GEEK MOB!]

Reboot THIS! (Part Two: Sequels)

When last we spoke, you and I, we discussed Hollywood’s fondness for rebooting franchises every few years and churning out sequel after sequel.  (Okay, I did most of the talking, but you nodded silent agreement.)  In that blog post, I humbly submitted some films that are prime candidates for reboots/remakes, and this time I’m offering up some slam-dunk sequels.

Pump Up The Volume (Likelihood of awfulness: AVERAGE)

Now he looks like Costner's little brother, which OH MY GOD!! ROBIN HOOD WAS RIGHT!!

Now he looks like Costner’s little brother, which OH MY GOD!! ROBIN HOOD WAS RIGHT!!

Kids today don’t remember the good ol’ days of Christian Slater being the ultimate heart-throb. It’s hard for today’s generation to recall when Slates was like a rebellious combination of Leo DiCaprio, Ryan Gosling, and Johnny Depp.  He was dreamy, sexy, quirky, and dangerous.  He played vengeful skateboarders and sociopathic high-school rebels and his hair would fall into his eyes and he’d smirk and YOU COULD HEAR THE PANTIES HITTING THE FLOOR!! Anyhoo, the original Pump Up the Volume was not based on that Technotronic jam you’d hear at Chicago Bulls games, but was instead a story about how one kid fought the system…with ROCK MUSIC!!  Slater’s pirate radio station rocked out all the coolest underground bands back when there was such a thing as “underground.”  That’s why I think this story deserves a sequel:  thanks to the internet and digital music sharing, etc. ANYONE can have their own “radio” station.  Now imagine that ol’ Happy Harry Hard-On (Christian Slater’s on-air persona) has become a high school teacher, but still has the soul of a rebel.  In fact, perhaps he discovers mistreatment of some of the students in his class (or bullying or illegal standard testing or whatever hot-button topic works at the time) but the school shuts down the local internets or something so Harry must teach the kids how to do it OL-SKOOL and is threatened with termination and such but it’s totes okay because he’s taught the kids to find their own voice and DAMN THE MAN!!  Throw in some cyber-hacking bullshit and you’ve got yourself a stand-up-and-cheer feel-good movie with a bitchin’ soundtrack.  Plus, seeing Christian Slater play the adult for a change would be cool.

Real Genius (Likelihood of awfulness: High)

No, look again.  It's NOT Axl Rose.

No, look again. It’s NOT Axl Rose.

This would probably suck.  No lie, I would really cringe if I heard they were going through with plans for a follow-up to one of my favorite movies of all time (there have been repeated rumors since 2007 that Val Kilmer had already signed on for a yet-to-be developed sequel.)  I would cringe because the original is so perfect that there’s NO WAY they could make me love a second one any more than the first.  That being said, in the right hands (Shane Black springs to mind) it would be a lot of fun to see Chris Knight as either a college professor or even a private-sector company man.  Perhaps Chris has lost his way, and some upstart college wonks would have to show him the path back to the man he was in college, slaving away for Dr. Hathaway’s nefarious schemes.  Sure, a fat Val Kilmer would be depressing, but the dude can still be funny.  Team him with a Michael Cera or go the other way and have Chloë Grace Moretz play a sassy young lady, maybe even (GASP!) Chris Knight’s long-lost daughter.  Again, with the right script and director, this would be wonderful.  However, in the wrong hands, it could be Slap Shot 2.

Point Break (Likelihood of awfulness: Guaranteed)

In fairness, it was almost impossible to find an unflattering pic of Keanu.

In fairness, it was almost impossible to find an unflattering pic of Keanu.

Again, in a perfect world, this would work.  In the world we actually live in, however, this is doomed.  There was a great deal of talk about a sequel, but then, well…Patrick Swayze died.  He was totally on-board and excited to participate in the planned follow-up.  With Swayze, it could have worked.  Hell, the Fast ‘N’ Furious series basically ripped off the Point Break formula, and they’ve done pretty well for themselves (or so I’m told.  I’ve yet to see a single one of those films.)  Without Swayze, this doesn’t really stand a chance.  To make matters worse, there are rumblings of a reboot, with surfing only being a part of the big-picture “world of x-treme sports and illegal street racing” backdrop.  Okay, first off, who still uses “x-treme” to describe ANYTHING?!  Secondly, did Hollywood follow my lead and ignore the plot of every Fast ‘N’ Furious released thus far?  Because it seems like they have that covered.  Yeah, the sad thing is this will happen and it will be terrible and I will cry.

48 Hrs. (Likelihood of awfulness: Average)

Welcome to...Jurassic Park!

Welcome to…Jurassic Park!

“Hey, asshole!” you shout at the computer. “They already DID a sequel to this!  It was Another 48 Hours and it was…well…” and then you stare at your shoes and male little back-and-forth sweeps in the dust with your toes.  (Why is there dust on the floor where your computer is located?  Jesus, Swiffer that shit!  Place looks like a pig sty!) Yes, there was a sequel, and yes it was lackluster.  Do it right, and this is an aging-cops-and-robbers buddy cop movie that could realistically revamp the whole formula.  And hopefully the screenwriters would twist things up and make it seem fresh: perhaps Eddie Murphy’s con-man Reggie Hammond is now a bail bondsman or something.  Perhaps a skip-trace bounty hunter (although the original movie worked because even though the premise was far-fetched, it wasn’t completely beyond belief.)  Nolte’s Jack Cates is retired, maybe working as a night security guy or something, and Eddie needs his help to track down some bad guy.  It would be fun, and both these actors (especially Murphy) could use a sure-fire hit.

The Last Starfighter (Likelihood of awfulness: Less Than You’d Think)

Yes, it's true.  Under that state-of-the-art makeup is the head bad-guy from Robocop.

Yes, it’s true. Under that state-of-the-art makeup is the head bad-guy from Robocop.

My alternate-timeline brother Vex Pop (not his real name) and I have already discussed this idea and think it’s pretty goddam good.  Hell, we almost have a treatment ready.  This would literally write itself.  In fact, GPA Entertainment has a project called “Starfighter” stuck in pre-production that many feel is either a reboot or sequel.    For those unfamiliar with the original The Last Starfighter, here’s the plot:  The Rylan Star League has come under attack by the Ko-Dan Armada.  To recruit new Starfighters, they plant coin-op arcade games throughout the galaxy and guess what?  Those games are actually training simulators, and when you break a certain score they come down from space to your trailer park and ask you to fight bad guys in a pretty awfully-rendered CGI spaceship! (Hey, it was 1984, and yes, they’d come a long way since TRON, but still had quite a way to go.)  Anyway, the kid plays the game,  goes to space, teams up with a reptilian co-pilot/navigator, and totally saves the universe.  Now, imagine that same scenario…but with Xbox Live.  Jesus, do you know how many kids play CoD on any given weeknight?  You could even have the recruiters themselves playing against everyone, anonymously gauging progress and gamer scores.  Hell, you could actually have an entire recruiting class from all over the world, Willy Wonka style.  Even better, maybe some are old guys like me and others are foul-mouthed little pricks who say terrible things about your mom, blacks, and gays (not always in the order) from the safety of their living room.  Watching these twerps react to a alien-filled space boot camp would be awesome.  Alex Rogan (the kid from the first movie) is now Admiral Rogan, and High Chancellor Grig has tasked him with outfitting a new class of Gunstar Starfighter with talented pilots because of some threat or another. Honestly, the bad guy is an afterthought, because the whole recruitment and training part of the film just sets up the epic finale.  Even better, what if some of the Starfighters/pilots are actually fighting the war from their living rooms in what they think is a giant massively multiplayer shooter? Drone tech has come a long way on this planet…why couldn’t an advanced spacefaring race translate that to home consoles?  In other words, some of those kids playing think it’s a big tournament, but IT’S TOTALLY REAL!!!  And finally, one of the best parts of this whole enterprise would be that for once… for ONCE…we’d have a movie tie-in video game that made complete sense.

Reboot THIS!!! (Part One: Remakes)

There’s been much discussion about the sorry state of Hollywood of late.  In particular, the apparent need to REMAKE ALL THE THINGS!!  Or even better, prolong a franchise well beyond the realms of good taste.  (Seriously, how many SAW movies were there?  About five too many, prolly.  I don’t know, as I’ve never seen a one.)  Dig this stat: in 1981, seven of the top-ten grossing films were originals. Those titles included Raiders of the Lost Ark and Stripes proving that diversity was not only celebrated, but downright necessary.  Two of the top-10 films were technically sequels, although For Your Eyes Only doesn’t really fit my criteria.  I’d say that’s more of a “franchise.”   By 2011, not ONE SINGLE ORIGINAL SCRIPT found its way to the top-10.  Not one. Eight (EIGHT!) were sequels, including Fast Five and Cars 2.  The other two titles were comic book adaptations, Thor and Captain America.  Wow.  Bridesmaids finished in the fourteen slot, and Super 8 was a measly 21st.  Last year was no better.  The wonderfully unique time-travel flick Looper was ranked  #45 in the 2012 box-office tally.  Pathetic.  However, there were two bright spots:  The charming Disney anti-princess film Brave made it to the eighth spot (although one wonders how it would’ve fared without that big Disney machine behind it) and the love-it-or-hate-it Ted edged in at #9.

But let’s be honest: sometimes remakes/reboots work.  They do.  Star Trek needed a fresh coat of paint, lest it fall into obscurity.  21 Jump Street was an unexpectedly enjoyable re-imagining of the old Fox TV series.  So maybe the problem isn’t that Hollywood insists on doing remakes and reboots, but that they’re picking the wrong properties.  That’s where I come in.  In addition to being a certified genius, I also have a keen sense of the “good shit,” a talent that has been honed over these almost 43 years on Earth.  Here, then, are my humble suggestions for remakes (we’ll handle the sequels next time.)  Your move, Hollywood…

Smokey and the Bandit (LIKELIHOOD OF AWFULNESS: Low)

See?  They're already BROS!!

See? They’re already BROS!!

I seriously cannot begin to understand how this hasn’t already happened.  The popularity of the Fast and Furious series alone should’ve gotten some coke-fueled producer on the horn with Judd Apatow to get the ball rolling.  Imagine Matthew McConaughey’s “Bandit” running interference for Kid Rock as The Snowman, while Sheriff John Goodman chases after them with every police car and helicopter ever.  Amy Adams or Rachel McAdams or some Adams-sounding hot, cute, quirky girl as the love interest/runaway bride.  Sure, the plot would have to be tweaked.  Maybe Bandit has a GPS-jammer in his new-school Trans-AM (PRODUCT PLACEMENT, PEOPLE!) and if he gets too far ahead of the semi, WHUH-OH!!  Also, the whole “bootlegging beer” plot is kinda stale.  But I recently learned that it is impossible to order online and then have delivered a new Tesla electric car to North Carolina.  Hmmm…the Tesla manufacturing plant is in Fremont, California. Smuggling one of those bad-boys all the way across the country would be risky, yes? Plus, IMPORTANT ENVIRONMENTAL ANTI-OIL MESSAGE!!  Dude, this thing is writing itself.  And I want a screen credit, dammit.

Tank Girl (LIKELIHOOD OF AWFULNESS: Very High)

See?  Just hire some cosplay geeks and LET'S SHOOT THIS FUCKER!

See? Just hire some cosplay geeks and LET’S SHOOT THIS FUCKER!

This will never happen, so I shouldn’t get my hopes up.  The thing is, I had my hopes up waaaayyyy too high for the first one.  You could tell that nobody involved with the making of the film had any clue.  They just didn’t “get it.”  The soundtrack was killer (soooo many 90’s movies sucked, but managed to have AMAZING soundtracks.  Looking at YOU, Crow: City of Angels.)  My only hope here is that after butchering Judge Dredd, someone went back and tried to do it right, with much better success.

Tank (LIKELIHOOD OF AWFULNESS: Average)

See?  You can't even see Mel Gibson's racism and anti-semitism!

See? You can’t even see Mel Gibson’s racism and anti-semitism!

I really enjoyed the James Garner version, even if C. Thomas Howell had some truly awful delivery.  That Partridge Family chick as the mom was sort of wasted, too.  But you do it today with a new, slightly darker edge (which Hollywood loves right now) and have the main character be an Iraq War veteran, and make it some sort of protest about disabled veterans or human-rights abuse cover-ups or Gitmo or something.  Hell, maybe you throw in some drone policy commentary, and you’ve got a fun romp where stuff gets crushed by an M-1 Abrams and we all learn something.  Maybe the lead guy/dad/James Garner is actually doing it for his Iraq Veteran kid.  I can honestly see Mel Gibson in a decent comeback role.  Maybe Harrison Ford.

Megaforce (LIKELIHOOD OF AWFULNESS: High)

See?  SUCK IT, CALL OF DUTY!!

See? SUCK IT, CALL OF DUTY!!

Many people have forgotten about (or never heard of) this piece of amazing Hollywood kitsch.  BARRY FUCKING BOSTWICK played the lead.  No, seriously.  Look it up.  (Sidebar: Barry Fucking Bostwick was the never-completed sequel to Witches of Eastwick.) The bald chick from Star Trek: The Motion Picture was in this movie.  Some people thought Chuck Norris was in it, but he was in Delta Force, which was pretty much the same film, but with a better color palette.    I don’t remember the plot too well, but it had a MOTORCYCLE THAT FIRED ROCKETS!!!!  And goddammit, when you are a twelve-year-old boy (and you will be one day) that’s all you need.  A reboot of this flick would be a CGI-Michael Bay thrill ride, and would make the G.I. Joe flicks look sad and out-of-date.  This would be a live-action Team America: World Police.  You could even keep the iconic final credits theme, without seeming ironic.  Seriously, there was a scene in the finale of the original where all the vehicles are streaking across the desert trailing colorful red, white, and blue smoke.  I can’t make this shit up.  Someone MUST remake this movie, if for no other reason than my friend, morning show co-host, and former U.S. Marine Tommy Collins wants it to happen.