Wayne’s World 2, the hit sequel to the feature film based on the Saturday Night Live skit starring Mike Myers and Dana Carvey, premiered 25 years ago today on December 10th, 1993.
10 years ago, on December 10th, 2008, the dramatic World War II era, Holocaust drama, “The Reader” starring Kate Winslet and Ralph Fiennes was released. It would be Winslet the Best Actress Academy Award that year.
35 years ago today, on December 9th, 1983, both the adaptation of author Stephen King’s novel “Christine” from director John Carpenter, as well as Brian de Palma’s “Scarface” starring Al Pacino were released.
30 years ago today, on December 9th, 1988, the Arnold Schwarzenegger – Danny DeVito comedy “Twins” was released.
Actor / comedian Kevin Hart has stepped down as the next host of the Academy Awards after complaints about his past anti-gay, homophobic Twitter posts.
Good luck finding the most vanilla, politically correct host possible Academy; wouldn’t even be able to have that racist bastard Charlie Brown…
There were three very good movies which were released on this date, November 5th:
55 years ago today, on November 5th, 1963, the film “Charade” was released starring Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn.
45 years ago today, on November 5th, 1973, the film “Serpico” was released starring Al Pacino.
15 years ago today, on November 5th, 2003, the film “The Last Samurai” was released starring Tom Cruise.
Not one, but two John Wayne films were released on this date…
65 years ago today, on November 27th, 1953, the underrated western “Hondo” starring The Duke premiered. The movie was actually released in the new 3-D format, a relatively new technique at the time.
50 years ago today, on November 27th, 1968, John Wayne appeared in the film “Hellfighters” where he starred as an oil rig firefighter. Sort of a “Deepwater Horizon” of its day…
Two films of completely different genres were released on this date, 35 years ago today.
On November 18th, 1983, the beloved Christmas favorite “A Christmas Story” was released.
Opening on that same day was the cult horror film “Sleepaway Camp”.
Hope the projectionist didn’t mess up the film reels that weekend…
Two movie release anniversaries to mention for November 12th:
25 years ago today, on November 12th, 1993, the film “Carlito’s Way” starring Al Pacino and Sean Penn was released. Directed by Brian De Palma, it’s an excellent crime drama which features a fantastic chase through New York’s Grand Central Station in the final denouement. You can watch it here:
And 10 years ago today, on November 12th, 2008, director Danny Boyle’s Academy Award winning film “Slumdog Millionaire” was released. A vibrant, exotic look at life, love and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire in India, it was one of the year’s most successful movies.
With the space race film “First Man” currently in theaters, it seems apropos to mention that 35 years ago today, on October 21st, 1983, the early days of NASA drama “The Right Stuff” premiered. Based on the book by Tom Wolfe, the movie starred Sam Shepard, Scott Glenn, Ed Harris and Dennis Quaid among a cast of star-studded names. It was nominated for 8 Academy Awards and won 4. Another outstanding production about space travel.
Oh, and by the way, opening on the same exact day as “The Right Stuff” was the film adaptation of Stephen King’s novel “The Dead Zone” starring Christopher Walken and directed by David Cronenberg.
25 years ago today, on October 15, 1993, not one but THREE excellent films were released:
the surprisingly good suspense film “Judgment Night” starring Emilio Estevez, Cuba Gooding Jr. and Denis Leary
the cult classic holiday favorite from Tim Burton “The Nightmare Before Christmas”
the sports movie favorite “Rudy” starring Sean Astin.
22 July – Devastating, hard to watch, yet impeccably made docudrama recounts the worst terrorist attack in Norway’s history in the summer of 2011. At nearly 2 and a 1/2 hours, the film lags at times, but for the most part, is a compelling portrayal of the tragic events. Director Paul Greengrass (United 93, Captain Phillips, several of the Jason Bourne films, etc.) utilizes his hyper-reality style of film-making to dramatic effect in a film which is essentially divided into three parts. The first third of 22 July depicts the actual bombing of the Norwegian Prime Minister’s office in Oslo and the subsequent attack on the summer camp of the island of Utoya. In total, Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people and injured hundreds more in the name of extreme Right-wing nationalism. The middle third of the film is the weakest, depicting the immediate aftermath of the incident on victim’s families, the defense attorney assigned to Breivik’s case, the government and others involved. The human element is present, but it lacks the immediacy and drama of the previous opening moments of the movie. It’s also a section that we’ve seen done better in films like Stronger (with Jake Gyllenhaal). Fortunately, things pick back up in the final third of the feature which focuses on the trial of Breivik, the fight of victim’s families to keep him from speaking in court, and the push for one victim to testify against him. Overall, 22 July is an excellent, but uneven production that shows the graphic effects of terrorism. The Norway attacks in 2011 have been called that country’s 9/11, but I would say they are more akin to the Oklahoma City bombings by Timothy McVeigh. This is a case of a homegrown terrorist, acting on a delusional political mission, who felt he was fighting in a larger ideological war. Due to the nature of the killer, his sequences are far more intriguing to watch than the stories of the victims, which may not have been the director’s intentions. Still, it is a quality overall effort and director Greengrass continues to make some of the best “based in real life” dramas in cinema. 22 July is available to watch on Netflix and a few select theaters.