Random Thread for February, 2014

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So I was watching Groundhog Day, because, you know, it’s almost Groundhog Day, and I noticed an actor with a small part looked like a young Michael Shannon. Turns out it is Michael Shannon. For those who have seen the movie several times, he’s the young man in the diner who is going to be married that day.

About Jackrabbit Slim

Location: Vegas, Baby! I’m much older than the other whippersnappers here, a baby boomer. I tend to be more snobbish about film, disdaining a lot of the multiplex fare for “cinema.” My favorite films: Woody Allen’s oeuvre (up until about 1990), The Godfather, The Graduate, A Hard Day’s Night, Pulp Fiction. Politics: Well, George McGovern was my political hero. I’m also a prickly atheist. Occupation: Poised to be an English teacher in Las Vegas. For many years I was an editor at Penthouse Magazine. My role on this blog seems to be writing lots of reviews and being the resident Oscar maven.

48 responses »

  1. Definitely sucks. I didn’t even know he had kids (let alone three) until just now.

    I’m shocked he was only 46 though. Bad genetics + addiction…ouch.

  2. Yeah, here’s the Times:

    His principal works in progress were “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” and “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2,” in which he plays the head game-maker Plutarch Heavensbee. He had largely finished on the first film, but was scheduled for seven more shooting days on the second, according to a person who was briefed on the situation and spoke on condition of anonymity because of confidentiality strictures.

  3. Oops, posted using another account I created for a top secret crazy thing I’m working on.

    Anyway, it’s going to be kind of odd seeing a new Hoffman movie in theaters nearly two years from now.

  4. Anybody care to share their favorite PSH performance? He won the Oscar for Capote, but I kind of thought he was great in The Devil Knows You’re Dead, or Boogie Nights. Of course, got to love him in The Big Lebowski.

  5. The Mattress King! Really, the slow tracking shot away from him as he yelling in the mattress store? Phenomenal. And The Master was a masterclass in restrained, angered psychopathy. (Is that a word?).

    But really, what’s the top secret crazy thing?

  6. The Lego Movie is at 99% on RT. Lord and Miller really are unstoppable (with the exception of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, but they only produced that). By most accounts, Lego is the type of film that Pixar used to make.

  7. I am so amped for Nurse 3D this weekend. Thank God it’s day-and-date theatrical/OnDemand because it’s not playing in-state.

  8. The death of Shirley Temple today made me aware that despite her iconic status in film history, I’d seen virtually none of her film work. The only film of hers that I saw was ‘The Blue Bird’ a long time ago which actually was the beginning of the end of her reign as the most popular star in Hollywood.

    It’s quite easy though to catch up on her filmography as a lot of her films appear to be up on YouTube (presumably many of them out of copyright).

  9. There’s no understating her importance as a star during the depression. She was the number one box office star for five years straight, from 1935-1939.

    I saw a lot of her movies as a child, as they were frequently on television, but I haven’t seen one in well over 40 years.

  10. I heard this morning that she made 4 million by the time she was 12. 4 MILLION?! THEN? That’s obscene, and kinda unimaginable.

  11. I see that McG has been let out of movie jail for Three Days to Kill. He had done only television since This Means War, which was a huge flop. Why would Luc Besson entrust a feature to him? The trailer looked somewhat interesting, but his name on it is warning to stay away.

  12. I still appreciate the energy of the Charlie’s Angels films. They’re essentially feature length movie trailers.

    And really, McG is a pretty good get for Besson. A rare “name” director brought in from the outside rather than promoted through the ranks of his production company (ala Louis Leterrier, Pierre Morel, Olivier Megaton, etc). It probably only cost something like 25-30M.

  13. I’d rather see Keaton and Burton team-up for another Batman than Beetlejuice. I always thought a 25 years later kinda thing would be fun.

  14. He was great, loved him in Demolition Man, too.

    Yeah, mounting a sequel with any returning cast members would be difficult. Ryder might be possible, but Baldwin and Davis look completely different. Jeffrey Jones is unemployable. Does Catherine O’Hara even work anymore?

  15. While all the Late Night talk show attention is on Jimmy Fallon’s first Tonight Show episode, no one seems to have noticed that Conan is now 100,000+ viewers under the show he replaced (Lopez Tonight). Glad to see that’s working out for them.

  16. I was reading Esquire and they had their “Alternative Oscars” and one of them was “The Clive Owen Award for Career Regression,” or something like that, and it went to Eric Bana. Indeed, he once, like Owen, seemed on the precipice of major stardom but instead has been a supporting player mostly, lately in Star Trek and Funny People or Lone Survivor, or starring in junk like Closed Circuit. What happened?

  17. Let’s make that a separate post! I know that Juan and I have had similar discussions about other actors (including Bana) and it would be fun to discuss in a dedicated thread.

  18. I’m really intrigued by the FF reboot, thanks mostly to Josh Trank’s involvement. I’d imagine they’ll address the racial thing by having one of them adopted.

  19. Harold Ramis (Groundhog Day, Ghostbusters, Caddyshack, National Lampoon’s Vacation, etc) dead at 69. Shame his last credit had to be Year One.

  20. I have no idea why this is the quote always comes to mind when I hear his name, but such is the mind… “I think they’re more interested in my epididymis”

  21. Interesting: Sony’s The Equalizer (with Denzel Washington and Chloe Grace Moretz) is reportedly earning the “highest scores for an R-rated movie in Sony’s history.” It opens September 26th.

  22. Even though I despise iTunes, this Disney Movies Anywhere connection is pretty slick. Disney has tried this for years – trying to deliver their movies through digital streaming – but their solutions never caught on. Tapping into iCloud may be the fix.

  23. Re: the death of Harold Ramis, the reaction to his death reminded me a bit of the reaction to Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death a few weeks back in the impact they had on cinema wasn’t really appreciated until they passed away.

    While Seymour Hoffman was widely respected during his successful acting career, I rarely heard him be listed as right at the top of the modern acting tree, he just tended to be overlooked. It was only upon his death that many realised that the quality of films he appeared in the past 15 years were probably the best of any actor in that period, and he usually delivered the performances to match. Only with his death did it seem to be realised he was probably the best in terms of consistent quality of the modern era.

    With Ramis, despite his successful acting roles in megahits like Stripes & Ghostbusters he never gained the fame of many of his contemporaries, which is understandable as he was largely a writer/director. But upon his death the impact he had on modern cinematic comedy (especially in the 1978-1993 period) made itself felt. I think it shows that it’s own way comedy has a greater and lasting impact on cinema audiences than any other when done right.

  24. In the wake of Harold Ramis’ death, I read that Ghostbusters 3 was still kicking around. Now that he’s gone, and since Bill Murray never wanted to do it (he and Ramis were apparently not speaking for ten years–note his rather terse statement about the death), one hopes this idea has been finally put to rest. Of course, given Aykroyd’s shamelessness, there might be a reboot in the works, with younger ghostbusters taking over (Andy Sandberg?) Let’s hope not.

  25. Is it me, or has Top Gun always been juvenile in its jingoism?
    And each time I watch it, I try to remove it from the ‘haze of homoeroticism’ that has built up around it over the years, but it’s nearly impossible.
    It is so unfailingly ‘of the ’80’s’, it reeks of cheese. The chest-pounding is as evident as the ‘chest-rubbing’. It’s quite a feat.

  26. I wanna see Scarlett Johannson walk into the Ghostbusters headquarters and say ‘I heard there was a position open’, for the opening scene, and just make it as ‘Jessica Rabbit’ comic book as you can as she fights ghosts in New York. Or go the other way, and make her a Jason Bourne Ghostbuster in a hot Ghostbusters outfit. Just turn the entire thing on its head. And Gozer comes back, and there’s an awesome, epic chick fight at the end on top of one of the stanchions of the George Washington Bridge.

  27. Welp, they’re rebooting The Matrix. I wonder if it’s so they can say some ‘big ideas’, ideas bigger than Hollywood in any way deserves, so it can later be unironically co-opted into commercials for huge, faceless corporations.

  28. It’s difficult to think of many film universes I’d rather re-visit less than The Matrix. Hell I’d gladly welcome an actual remake more than any sort of continuation.

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