Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Five Most Forgotten (and secretly most awesome) Parody Films in Existence

Humor is a very, very subjective subject.    What’s funny to one person definitely won’t be funny to another, but some parody films (Young Frankenstein, Airplane!, Not Another Teen Movie, Blazing Saddles and Naked Gun, for example) have stood the test of time and become universally beloved.  That said, some movies that are pretty darn good in this genre that have either been critically derided or completely ignored.  These are the top five most obscure – and achingly funny – parody movies you might not have heard of.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Five Least Necessary Sequels Ever

Film sequels can be divvied up into neat piles.  There are the ones that arrive at the perfect time, with something to say and a theme to build on from its origin film (The Empire Strikes Back, if you please).  There are those that are misbegotten from the very start and leave the audience sitting in their seats scratching their heads (Stayin’ Alive and its odd plot choices).  Still yet there are sequels that get greenlit ten plus years after the first film and arrive before surprised and occasionally horrified audiences (Dumb and Dumber To, rise and take a bow).  Some sequels – even worse -  feature none of the original elements or stars that made the first one so successful (Grease 2) .  But some are special; some fall into the category of being unnecessary because the first film in the series was so satisfying, so complete, that a sequel feels like a desecration. 

Below are the five most unnecessary of that bunch, in my little opinion.  I’ve tried to be a little less obvious with my choices, but some chestnuts cannot resist a good roasting.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Matrimony Month(s): The Notebook versus The Wedding: Love As Tragic Farce In Nicholas Spark’s Mild Kingdom

The late 0’s to the early 10’s were an odd time.  Spurred on by war, famine and fear on all fronts, weary Americans turned toward simplistic, homespun entertainment to comfort them.  All of a sudden, and completely out of the blue, romances were all about tradition, and all about weeping again.

Maritmony Month(s): Mama Mia!: Loud Trope Subversion, ABBA and Fireworks in Greece

It took nearly ten more years after My Big Fat Greek Wedding for another big, splashy ‘feel good’ movie about marriage to hit the big screen – in this case a filmed version of the enormous Broadway jukebox classic “Mama Mia.”

Hitting theaters in 2008, the big-budget film came at the very tail end of the movie musical revival begun by Chicago’s 2002 Oscar win.  There were a handful of highlights and lowlights in the genre leading up to Mama Mia before the genre would receive another mini-revival with 2012’s Les Miserables update.  As for Mama Mia itself –and its POV on marriage and romance – the story is simple.  And complicated.