Archive for: March, 2013

Freaky Friday (1976): They’ll Play Batdance At Our Funeral

Freaky Friday (1976): They’ll Play Batdance At Our Funeral

In which Jason and Jack Walsh review the 1976 trailer for Freaky Friday. Part of a series of trailer reviews for body-switching comedies of the 70′s, 80′s, and 90′s. 

JASON

Jack, according to the trailer, here’s what we know for sure about the events of Freaky Friday—Barbara Harris is a teenage mother, Jodie Foster is a middle-aged daughter, and John Astin is a “confused male chauvinist.”

Listen, Jack—John Astin’s not going to let a little thing like not having any idea what’s going on stop him from sexually harassing you. He really captures the befuddled horniness of the 1970’s. If he was being drawn by a caricaturist, he’d have a cartoon question mark above his head and a huge boner.

Also, is that a witch on water skis jumping over a guy buried in the sand? Now I’m the one who’s confused with a boner.

JACK

I knew I should have trademarked the phrase “Confused With A Boner” before I put it on my business cards. Now everybody’s throwing it around like just another “YOLO.” It’s just as well, I guess. Angry phone calls from the manager of Chili’s were all that tossing that card into the “Win a Free Lunch!” fishbowl ever seemed to get me. But, what can you do? CWAB, baby!

When I agreed to review the trailer for Freaky Friday, I’d assumed that it would be the full theatrical trailer and not a quickie TV spot. There’s hardly anything to go on here, especially since I’ve been asked not to mention Lindsay Lohan in this, the one Scene Missing trailer review where it would have actually made sense. Are you sure I can’t convince you to do the trailer for Gorky Park like I wanted to? What if I told you that it’s a changing-places movie, too, and that William Hurt and Lee Marvin do the old Moscow Switcheroo? I mean, I know that isn’t the case, but even if Hurt and Marvin were just to walk past each other in the film, it would have to be a more convincing persona-swap than the one suggested by the special effects in the Freaky Friday trailer.

You know what was a real missed opportunity back in the day? A Lee Marvin/Lee Van Cleef switch-up. I always got those guys confused because a) Lee, obviously and b) they were both in movies with Clint Eastwood that my dad made me watch. Now I’m kind of sad that the world never got that iteration of Freaky Friday. Then, instead of somebody really getting into Jodie Foster and shooting President Reagan, you would have absolutely nobody getting really into Lee Marvin and shooting anybody. Except in The Killers, where I’m pretty sure Lee Marvin shoots Ronald Reagan. But maybe, just maybe, it was Lee Van Cleef all along.

Masters of the Universe: Is That, In Point Of Fact, Frank Langella In There?

Masters of the Universe: Is That, In Point Of Fact, Frank Langella In There?

In which Jason reviews the trailer for “Masters of the Universe” with Ian Belknap, former Fact Checker for The Encylopedia Show , and Founder and Overlord of WRITE CLUB.

JASON

I feel like Skeletor is throwing away a big opportunity to ghost-ride the whip here. If you aren’t familiar with the parlance, ghost riding the whip is when you put your car in neutral, turn the volume up on your stereo, and exit your vehicle to dance beside it as it rolls forward.  Much like Mitt Romney’s inauguration speech if he’d won the 2012 election, it’s a “Jesus, take the wheel!” kind of scenario, except with more Ray Parker Jr. samples.

“Hey ghosts, could you steer my PT Cruiser? I just need to hop out and twerk for a second. What? Your hands are incorporeal?! I thought you were a poltergeist! Look, just try to scare the car in the right direction. And would it kill you to put on a bed sheet with eye holes in it? People are going to think I’m dancing in the street next to a moving vehicle with no driver and I’ll look like a crazy person.”

Food for thought: Ray Parker Jr. is more afraid of ghosts than he’s ever been in his entire life.

Anyway, does Skeletor think he’s too good to hop out and ghost ride his own hovercraft? Maybe he’s the ghost, and every vehicle he occupies is constantly considered to be in a state of being ghost-ridden, and it’s his minions who should be dancing.

IAN

These are all excellent points you’re making. If “excellent” is understood to mean “scattershot observations that fail entirely to miss the most salient aspects of a thing.”

I for one would ask: “How are we to know that this is actually Frank Langella in there?” How are we to know? The credits that roll at the end of the picture? The somnolent voiceover in this trailer? His IMDB page? The voice (allegedly) issuing forth from behind that skull mask that looks to be made from some kind of luminous extraterrestrial snot? At least THIS Amazon summarizer has the COURAGE to ask of Langella’s memoir “Dropped Names” “How did Brooke Astor lose her virginity?”

Look, I’ll be the first man to stand tall and agree that there can be no more pure expression of “a being of utter evil” than the ability to shoot unconvincing fuschia lightning out of one’s fingertips in a command chamber festooned with gold lamé, as he does here. That’s not the issue. That much is clear. The credentials of the character are unimpeachable. But the people have a right to know: IS that Satellite- and Fangoria Chainsaw Award-nominated actor Frank Langella inside that snot-skull? I mean – at the risk of coming as the “Langella Birther Movement” within the mediascape of the nation of this trailer – I think we can all agree that it doesn’t take a whole lot of convincing to get Dolph goddamn Lundgren to put on that Linda Evans wig and spray tan, wriggle into that light bondage gear (Sidebar: BILLION dollar franchise idea: “Fifty Shades of Dolph” – you’re welcome), and pretend to be Adam, Prince of Eternia. And where the fuck is Battle Cat, by the way?

But Frank fucking Langella has come to STAND for something, goddammit. I mean, we’re talking about the guy who captured our hearts as Lieutenant Hudson in the 2005 Ja Rule picture Back in the Day. OK, maybe not our hearts. But some fleeting portion of our attention, for sure. That portion devoted to late-night BET-sightings of Frank Langella, at any rate.

As to this business of ghost-riding, which I believe was the initial subject of your inquiry: this seems a fantastic way to blow the minds of passersby. Provided you were somehow able to assure that the only passersby were plucked from the ranks of those whose minds are also blown by guys like this.

Total Recall (1990): Throwing Multiple Mommas From Multiple Trains

Total Recall (1990): Throwing Multiple Mommas From Multiple Trains

In which Jason and Laura Straub of Vouched Books review the 1990 trailer For Total Recall.

JASON

Back in 1993, I was a fifteen year old bag boy at a middle Georgia Bi-Lo. (This was when bag boys were still allowed to receive tips, as tipping had not yet been banned by the bag boy supreme court. You can spot the difference between regular court and bag boy court by the statue of a blindfolded Piggly Wiggly pig in front of the courthouse steps, balancing the fairness of $1.49 Boston Butt Pork Roast against the righteousness of $4.99 Seedless Watermelons.) While I was bagging his groceries, a disheveled man in a Members Only jacket and thick glasses told one of our pregnant cashiers he’d pay her $20 to sit on his face.

First of all, everyone—you can put down your twenty dollar bills. It didn’t work. Believe it or not, the cashier declined the man’s offer of a twenty dollar mustache ride. Which, has this man not seen the novelty T-shirts? His rates are well above the going market rate of FREE.

Second of all, if that dirty old man lived in the world of Total Recall, he wouldn’t know whose face to tell a pregnant cashier to sit on, because apparently everyone’s face is morphing into a different face all the time.

LAURA

My question is: does it hurt when your face morphs? It looks incredibly painful. Also, I’m a big fan of the start of this trailer, i.e: Arnold Schwarzenegger’s head is either a planet or a moon, rotating around this other planet, which has a pyramid so large that it can clearly be seen from outer space. Clearly not earth. It really sets the tone for the film, I think: 1. Worship Arnold 2. This movie is going to be its own kind of psychedelic trip.

I wonder what would have happened to that guy at the supermarket if he WERE in Total Recall and the cashier turned out to be Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character, Douglas Quaid. The DB of a shopper would probably say something like, “Hey sugar-britches, I’ll throw you an Andrew Jackson if you sit on my face.” Then the pregnant clerk you were working with would do that crazy painful Rubix Cube morph and transform into something all ripped and manly aka: Douglas Quaid. Douglas would then say something quippy, as a Douglas is prone to do. In fact, I imagine he’d just pull out a gun and say something like, “Sit on this.” Or Is that how your mother taught you to speak to a lady?

Jason… what would you have done if that had happened?

Imperial Trouble Episode 100: Mark Meer and Beau Brown

Imperial Trouble Episode 100: Mark Meer and Beau Brown

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It’s our 100th episode! Jason is joined at MomoCon by puppeteer Beau Brown of The Puckin’ Fuppet Show, and actor Mark Meer of Mass Effect and Versus Valerie. Topics include playing Salvador Dalí for 50 hours, who wore the Statue of Liberty better, and who’s the real monster.