Day 228: From The Hip (1987)

from the hipI was searching endlessly for a movie to watch today and I came across one that instantly peaked my interest. Judd Nelson (The Breakfast Club) was one of the coolest bad asses in the 80’s and so I decided to watch him in From The Hip for today’s film. Robin Weathers (Nelson) is a trial lawyer in Boston who is sick and tired of taking those types of cases. He wants to be a full fledged defense attorney, but he can’t do so at his firm. That is until he starts to be a rebel rouser in the courtroom which brings him lots of attention and a big win. After that big win, he is given a huge promotion at the firm despite others not wanting him to so they set him up with a murder case they feel he is guaranteed to lose. The film also stars John Hurt (V For Vendetta) as Douglas Benoit, Elizabeth Perkins (Big) as Jo Ann, David Alan Grier (In The Army Now) as Steve Hadley, Darren McGavin (A Christmas Story) as Craig Duncan, Dan Monahan (Porky’s) as Larry, Nancy Marchand (The Sopranos) as Roberta Winnaker, Allan Arbus (Coffy) as Phil Ames, Ray Walston (Fast Times At Ridgemont High) as 1ST Judge, Edward Winter (Porky’s II: The Next Day) as Raymond Torkenson, and the film was directed by Bob Clark (Porky’s).

from the hip 2This film in my opinion is actually two different movies in one and obviously I’ll explain it to you. The film starts off as this outrageous comedy about a jokester using the system to get ahead by fooling his peers. Then the film turns into an serious crime drama for the second half of the film as he ponders whether what he is doing is right or wrong. I am and always have been a huge fan of Judd Nelson and he definitely does not disappoint in this film, but the real dynamic of this film goes to John Hurt. Hurt absolutely raises the bar for Judd Nelson in this film with his brilliant performance which brings out the brilliance in Judd Nelson. John Hurt’s performance in the film is actually exhilarating for a film that otherwise is trying to find it’s identity. The other thing that bothered me about this film is that it takes place in Boston, but was filmed in the city of Charlotte, North Carolina. So, I am assuming for the most part that the picture above is not the city of Boston. The only thing that was authentic to the city of Boston was the Boston Celtics memorabilia and the New England Patriots sweatshirt he wears. There are barely any outside scenes shot for this film other than on the roof of Nelson’s roof which is OK, but I love shots of the city of Boston. Don’t however hold that against the film because it is enjoyable to watch. I am going to give the film an B for a final grade.

Day 108: She’s Having A Baby (1988)

6999 copyI was looking for something to watch today and I saw that Epix Drive In was having an 80’s takeover weekend. So out of all the movies they were showing today and tonight, She’s Having A Baby is the only one I hadn’t seen. The film stars Kevin Bacon (Footloose) and Elizabeth McGovern (Kick-Ass) as newlyweds Jake and Kristy Briggs. You see everyone in the world thinks that Jake and Kristy have no idea what they are getting into when the two got married and to be honest I don’t believe that they fully knew. Even though they might be unprepared for what lies ahead of them, they will do their best to tackle whatever it is including the decision to have a baby. The film also stars Alec Baldwin (The Hunt For Red October) as Davis, James Ray (The Edge Of Night) as Mr. Briggs, Holland Taylor (Two And The Half Men) as Mrs. Briggs, William Windom (To Kill A Mockingbird) as Mr. Bainbridge, Paul Gleason (The Breakfast Club) as Howard, Dennis Dugan (Problem Child) as Bill, Edie McClurg (Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) as Lynn, John Ashton (Beverly Hills Cop) as Ken, Larry Hankin (Home Alone) as Hank, and the film was written, directed, and produced by John Hughes (The Breakfast Club). 

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At first I had a hard time trying to figure out the plot of the film in accordance to what I should write as a synopsis above. The plot is as plain as day if you truly think about it because it’s all about whether we make the right choices or not. There are temptations in the world that makes us question the choices we made especially when it has to do with marriage. That is what both Kevin Bacon and Elizabeth McGovern’s characters face in the film as they get adjusted to each other and the life that follows. You can definitely tell when you are watching the film that it’s a John Hughes film because it has his name written all over it from the writing and the shots. Plus there is always this lesson that our main character learns in every film and Kevin has that lesson as well. Alec Baldwin lookss so young in this film, it’s crazy to see what he looks like now compared to then, but he was masterful in the film. If I were you guys I would stick around for the end credits as you gets some special appearances from actors like John Candy, Kirstie Alley, Ted Danson, Woody Harrelson, Dyan Cannon, Matthew Broderick, Dan Aykroyd, and so many more. If you are a fan of Kevin Bacon or even Kevin Bacon 80’s films, then give this one a look cause you never know you may enjoy this film. That is why I am going to give the film an B for a final grade.

Day 79: The Jacket (2005)

1876For today’s film, I felt like I need a little mystery and drama in my life and I found today’s film laying around. The film is called The Jacket and it stars Adrien Brody (Predators) as Jack Stark, an injured gulf war veteran. Jack Stark was injured in the line of combat and sent home to Vermont suffering from acute Amnesia. After a mishap, he is accused of murdering a police officer, but because of his condition they believe he has no memory of it and he is sent to a hospital for the criminally insane. While he is there, he is put through some torturous acts by Doctor Becker (Kris Kristofferson) who puts him in a morgue drawer. While in the drawer, Jack has some revelations about the future and he tries to solve it before he meets his untimely death. The film also stars Keira Knightley (Domino) as Jackie Price, Jennifer Jason Leigh (The Breakfast Club) as Dr. Lorenson, Kelly Lynch (Road House) as Jean Price, Daniel Craig (Sky Fall) as Rudy Mackenzie, Steven Mackintosh (Kick-Ass 2) as Dr. Hopkins, Brendan Coyle (The Raven) as Damon, Mackenzie Phillips (One Day At A Time) as Nurse Harding, and the film was directed by John Maybury (The Edge Of Love).

2004_the_jacket_004The best way that I can describe this film to you is to think of The Butterfly Effect, but in a mental hospital and without the bad repercussions and distorted realities. By going inside this morgue drawer, he is able to go into what some would call hallucinations, but he is actually in the future. The only thing is that at first they don’t really explain that he is in the future very well as you think it’s a memory that he is having until he finds one key object that you’ll have to watch for yourself to find out what I am talking about. I do however want to say that truly believe that this film had to be Adrien Brodys best role that he had ever done in his career. He was absolutely brilliant in the film and I have to give it to Daniel Craig as well. Craig is really convincing as a crazy guy who believes that he isn’t that crazy. Keira Knightley is smoking hot and we get to see a little more of her than I expected in the film, but she does great as well. I am surprised I haven’t seen more of this film on Television or anything else. I stumbled upon it not realizing that I had the movie and I never watched it (believe me for some strange reason I have a lot of those). Anyhow, I was very impressed with the film and enjoyed it a lot. They list it on IMDB as a horror film, but more suspense in my opinion. I mean the tones of the film are very dark and bleak like a horror film, but it’s more of a mystery story. So, I am going to give the film an B+/A- for a final grade because it borders on both of those grades.

Day Three: Foxcatcher (2014)

foxcatcherEver since last year’s Academy Awards and The Golden Globes, this was definitely a film I wanted to see for all the buzz it caught. The film Foxcatcher was directed by Bennett Miller (Moneyball) and it starred Steve Carell (The Way Way Back), Channing Tatum (21 Jump Street), and Mark Ruffalo (Now You See Me). The film centers around two of America’s greatest wrestling brothers and a very rich man from an important American family. Mark Schultz (Tatum) is training for his ultimate goal which is to win the gold at the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games. One day he is contacted by John du Pont (Steve Carell) multimillionaire who wants Mark to train as his facility to legitimize his Team Foxcatcher. Mark is a very impressionable person and du Pont quickly creates a rift between the two brothers.The union ultimately leads the Schultz’s into tragedy as du Pont is quickly losing his mind. The film also stars Sienna Miller (American Sniper) as Nancy Schultz,  Vanessa Redgrave (Howard’s End) as Jean du Pont, Anthony Michael Hall (The Breakfast Club) as Jack, Guy Boyd (Taking Chance) as Henry Beck, Brett Rice (Forrest Gump) as Fred Cole, and Lee Perkins (Wild Card) as Corporal.

foxcatcher-channing-tatum-steve-carell-1The film didn’t win any of the big awards, but it definitely put up a fight against some of the heavy contenders at the time. The thing that amazed me the most about this film was the transformation Steve Carell went through because not only does he appear different, but his character is strange. He was a man with a lot of money to throw around and for a little while no one, but Mark could tell that there was something strange about him. He was definitely one of those guys who was socially awkward and sheltered from the dangers of the real world by his mother. Mark Ruffalo is as brilliant as he usually is as he went through a transformation of his own having to put on weight and muscle for the film. The film isn’t full of action, but it’s a slow decent into madness as you dive deeper into it like the characters are. The film is relatively dark in tone if you ask me as there is nothing happy about the film. It’s definitely a film about a match made in hell that turns out drastically bad by the end of the film. There are no spoilers to give here as the film is based on a true story so you can look it for yourself without having to watch the film.

brthsThere is a post online that questions what is true and what isn’t true about every film naturally as they are on “Based” on a true story. One of the facts that went into question was whether or not Mark had a sexual relationship with du Pont and Mark took to his Facebook page to explain the truth saying, “Leaving the audience with a feeling that somehow there could have been a sexual relationship between du Pont and I is a sickening and insulting lie. I told Bennett Miller to cut that scene out and he said it was to give the audience the feeling that du Pont was encroaching on your privacy and personal space. I wasn’t explicit so I didn’t have a problem with it. Then after reading 3 or 4 reviews interpreting it sexually, and jeopardizing my legacy, they need to have a press conference to clear the air, or I will.” There are a lot of details about the film that is wrong so if you want to read any if it, just visit this website for more. Otherwise, I thought it was a great film. I am going to give the film an A- for a final grade.