Archive for the ‘Top Ten’s’ Category

Top 10 Football Movies

Monday, January 20th, 2014

Ahhh, Superbowl hype week, where one has to wait two weeks for the big game, and the first week is just a load of trash talking (Richard Sherman had a head start and got on it right at the end of the game yesterday) and commercial build up. So why not spend the days leading up to football big game by watching movies. Here are ten of the best football movies, in no special order, though number 1 in my book is……

1) Any Given Sunday: 1999: Still my favorite football movie to this date. Yes, its a bit overdone at times. But its got a real edge to it too, whilst Lawrence Taylor’s acting done quite well (though disturbingly real in his “life after football” speech).

2) Remember the Titans: 2000: I didn’t really like this the first time I saw it, as it felt like a Hollywood blockbuster about team camaraderie during times of separation – where winning takes it all in the end. Then you realize there’s nothing wrong with that.

3) Big Fan: 2009: Film about an obsessed NY Giants fan in Staten Island who has no life otherwise, calls sports radio repeatedly at night (hey, I heard it got another caller a job doing shows there), finds he favorite player and finally meets him, but not in the ideal way. Not that this list is in any order, but perhaps being a NY Giants fan helps.

4) The Program
: 1993: As you may have seen from the DRE blog, 90’s movies are a weak-spot for me. As a kid I had more time to watch movies and tend to remember them for more that what they are.

Of course now-a-days, you can just find them online (full length movie below!). This one has that “Straight off a tape” authenticity. Despite that, it does touch base ahead of its time on topics such as NCAA bribery.

5) North Dalls Forty: 1979: You think some of this life that some of the NFL players lead now is new? Here’s a movie that depicted this in the 70’s, starring Nick Nolte.

6) Rudy: 1993: Ru-dee, ru-dee. Based on a true story and while not a big box office winner, it still gets plenty of showing on cable TV to this date.

7) The Waterboy: 1998 – Great football comedy. Its an absolutely stupid movie, but that’s the point. Take it for what its worth, its an Adam Sandler movie. But I found this to be one of his more amusing ones – couldn’t name one since though!

8) Friday Night Lights: 2004: Bonus points for director Pete Berg who last month stated there will not be a sequel to the original movie that spun into a TV miniseries. I have never actually seen the series that happened after, but this list is about movies.

9) Necessary Roughness: 1991: not the recent TV show but the 1991 movie with a 30 year old rookie called in on an otherwise mediocre team, the story line won’t surprise you. But its got a lot of familiar actors in it even some I forgot were in this. It’s a dumb comedy of old and see the reference made earlier regarding the 90’s.

10) League of Denial: 2013: Time to get serious though. The game hits hard. The fans love it but the players get the worst of it in many cases. Even the big names are not immune. This documentary reminds us that the biggest story about the sport is the sport itself.

It may even change how some people view football. It didn’t in my case, as I think its not exactly a new discovery on how such hits can cause harm….but it did slightly change how I view the NFL and how it put business first and players last.

Any one we missed out on, let us know and we’ll try and check it out at least. Knute Rockne: All American? Never seen it. Blindside, Jerry Maguire, yeah we know those, but it wasn’t top 10. Brian’s Song, well that one is technically a made-for-TV movie, but will have to check that out sometime soon regardless. Have a great Superbowl wherever you may be watching it from.

Top 10 Halloween Movies To Watch During October Nights

Thursday, October 17th, 2013

Movies to watch during halloween season. At first I was going to do a top 10 of halloween movies, but I’m not sure if all of these were necessarily “halloween” releases, a couple of which spring to mind. But they are worth a watch during the season of movie marathons.

10 – Nightmare on Elm Street / Friday the 13th / Carrie (1984 / 1980 / 1976) – I was reluctant to put these in, as they were a bit on the novelty side at times and sequels of each were a bit too many. But they exemplify 80’s horror movies. To this day they get remade over and over again, in fact a remake of Carrie has just been released this month. Ignore those and see the originals.

9 – Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) – Lofi horror movie before it was a genre. Sure all the remakes and recent films have more gore and blood, but a lot of it was influenced by this one.

8 – Nosferatu the Vampire (1979) – Werner Herzog’s version has a haunting score and a memorable performance by Klaus Kinski. I know the original was a pioneer in film-making but this one does not feel dated at all.

7 – The Thing (1982) – Another remake that tops the original and in fact that could be a list of its own, with Texas Chainsaw, Frankenstein and many others. This one was so good that they thought they’d remake it a third time in fact.

6 – American werewolf in London (1981) – Best wolf related movie and great use of effects without any CGI. Dark humor and gory scenes that started many of the 80’s horror trends.

5 – The Fly (1986) – I know we’re going remake heavy here but Jeff Goldblum vomiting flesh burning ooze on a man’s hand David Cronenberg-style is classic.

4 – Carnival of Souls (1962) – Produced and directed by Herk Harvey for an estimated $33,000, it literally features a carnival, whats more scary than that?

3 – The Exorcist (1973) – It sent my head spinning, literally, one of the movies I remember watching when I was a kid, and thats probabaly not a good thing.

2 – The Shining (1980) – I’ve seen this a bunch of times, I guess it messed with me. Now it just amazes me. Not really a halloween movie perhaps – in fact I don’t know the time of year it was releases, but when scary winters come into play, The Shining is an absolute classic.

1 – Halloween (1978) – Of course, the original one an not the sequels (though the Rob Zombie one was actually suprisingly decent too), is a classic that still sends chills to this day.

As for the rest of the team here, Justin’s pick for a Halloween movie worth checking out is – Let the Right One In / Let me in (2008) “Låt den rätte komma in” (original title) – A unique art house take on the vampire genre via Sweden. Once again American studios felt compelled to make a dumber and tasteless remake.

And overall, bonus points for Thriller (full length music video which was revolutionary and traumatised a friend of mine) and any David Lynch movie (even the non-horror ones). Plus Psycho (1960) which is another example of how one can categorise horror or halloween. Let us know if we missed any others or if any suggestions.

Also, there was this movie I saw on TV in the 80’s where someone was buried alive and that was a big part of the plot. It was more a psych thriller than a bloody gory flick, but I’ve been trying to find out this film for ages. It freaked me out as a kid. Anyone know what it was?

Happy Halloween!

Worst Summer Blockbusters, According To Them

Saturday, July 13th, 2013

Now playing at a theater near you. Star Trek: Into Darkness, Hangover 3, Fast and Furious 6, After Earth, Superman: Man of Steel, The Lone Ranger, Pacific Rim, 300: Rise of an Empire. Once again, sequels and remakes galore compile the list of 2013 summer blockbusters.

Instead of making a list of worst summer blockbusters, because I don’t plan on seeing most of these, and bar a couple of these and some 80’s or 90’s flops that I actually wanted to see back in the days, I thought about trying a different angle and guiding you to various places on the web who’ve compiled similar lists way before I did and have more of a genuine say on this matter.

Of course, I have seen some of these, for instance a common theme is Transformers sequels (such as Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen), which a friend of mine really loved and convinced me to give a chance. I’ve been holding it against her ever since. Of course, the reasons I hated it, was actually why she loved it. As I learned on previous posts such as this one, people don’t want a lasting memory or an amazing insight from movies, they just want to be wowed and taken away for a couple hours.

Still, even the most recreational movie goer can attest to the fact that big budget movie doesn’t always equate to success, even when conservatively banking on an existing franchise or storyline remake. Here are some lists from other sites that include their takes.

http://www.complex.com/pop-culture/2012/05/the-25-worst-summer-movie-blockbusters-of-all-time/ – loads of usual suspects like Superman III, Waterworld, plus Batman and Robin, along with a lot of DC Comic remakes

http://www.newser.com/story/124332/transformers-2-star-wars-episode-i-and-the-worst-summer-movies-ever.html – Battlefield Earth, which I’ve been told is so bad, I should give it a look one day. Maybe if stuck on a plane with only one film choice on it.

http://entertainment.time.com/2011/07/26/top-20-worst-summer-blockbusters/ – they dig up some rare ones. Hudson Hawk? Wow, and Bruce thought people forgot. Knight and Day, didn’t hear a thing about it. And some familiar ones most lists have, such as Speed 2, Catwoman and Howard The Duck. What I dont get was that people were expecting the latter to be good?

hudson-hawk-bruce-willis-or-bruce-danger-willis

http://guyism.com/entertainment/movies/50-most-disappointing-summer-blockbusters-of-all-time.html – another list, but at least has the nice option to view it all in one page. Many long forgotten flops like Prince of Persia, Da Vinci Code, Miami Vice, The Happening, Superman IV (which was amazingly worse than III), along with commonly shamed movies like Catwoman and Green Lantern.

Now if only one of those movies passed some of their budget over here. Its not like anyone would notice anyway, right?

Lost in Translation – Movie Titles Around The World

Sunday, May 19th, 2013

In 2013, there is a movie titled “In The House”. But I didn’t quite understand why they needed to call it that, other than for consumer convenience.  “Dans La Maison” (its original title in 2012) was fine. The 2013 release in the US is in French with English subtitles and that’s fine with me, in fact I’m glad they didn’t try a full on revision (and gone are the days of dubbed over movies). Still, why remarket the title when having the title in French might help broadcast the movie name a bit better.  “In the House” just sounds cheesier too (as if one of those dance-off movies from a few years back!)

However, this post isn’t about the movie above, which has done well in film festivals around the world. I haven’t really seen any of François Ozon’s movies, but have heard some hype and wouldn’t mind checking this film out.

Instead, it reminded me of two things (and a need to keep posting even though time is a hot commodity). One was a friend of mine who over the years loves to say “Dans la Maison”. Secondly was the annoyance behind movie titles finding the need to be translated. Unless its “that” bad a translation, where you find it amusing.  Such as this excuse for making another top 10 list.

Top 10 Amusingly Translated Movie Titles:

The English Patient = Do Not Ask Me Who I Am – Ever. (China)

As Good as it Gets = Mr Cat Poop (China again, where allegedly the main characters name sounds like the word for Cat Poop)

Grease = Vaseline (Venezuela)

Never Been Kissed – Because She’s Ugly (Philippines)

Bad Santa – Santa is a Pervert (Czech republic)

Pretty Woman = I Will Marry a Prostitute to Save Money (also China, where they like to make the title very descriptive)

Die Hard – Mega Hard (Denmark), in fact several countries have odd translations for this series.

The Full Monty = released as “6 Naked Pigs” or “Six Stripped Warriors” in China based on language (Cantonese/Mandarin)

Dodgeball – Full of the Nuts (Germany)

Dr No = We Don’t Want a Doctor (Japan)

Kept this pretty slack, as it turns out there are loads of lists of these around the web, so if you’re looking for more, check out http://www.denofgeek.us/movies/13782/50-movie-titles-that-got-lost-in-translation or http://www.shortlist.com/entertainment/films/50-funniest-movie-title-translations – though you’ll see some of these might even be made up.  For instance, “Matrix” in France was not what some of these people say it is.

Or for example, some say, Lost In Translation was translated to “Meetings and Failures in Meetings” over in Portugal.  Not True.  It was “o Amor É um Lugar Estranho” or “Love in Translation”.  http://cinema.sapo.pt/filme/lost-in-translation/poster/73d1df369f0a10498386771da63e853d

In fact its weird where some of these came from, I guess its the whole ability to make up stuff online! Anyway, let us know any other good ones (real or rumoured) that you know of.

Ok, end of quick break, back to writing again.

Top 10 Baseball Movies for Opening Day 2013

Saturday, March 30th, 2013

Forget March Madness and good luck finding 10 Easter movies anyway. Spring is here, though it sure doesn’t feel the case and its been way too long since we did an old fashioned top ten post. So, in time for opening day tomorrow, here are a top 10 of Baseball Movies. We also realized that some baseball movies are pretty bad. Other than these.

1) The Natural (1984) – It’s quite a slow paced movie, which makes me wonder how I was more suited to watch it and enjoy it 20 years ago, but it was “that” good. I tried not to commit an order to this list, but its hard to find a baseball movie better than this one. And, from a voting perspective, this was an easy winner.

2) Moneyball (2011) – Solid movie, and though Pitt and Jonah Hill get all the credit, I think Philip Seymour Hoffman was pretty good in this movie too, even if the person he played in the movie (Art Howe) was furious about it and hasn’t had a job since (hopefully happily retired at least).

3) Major League (1989) – Comedy, baseball, late 80’s, uh-oh, likely a movie that I’ll like. Plenty of useless banter too for an Indians franchise that hasn’t won much in recent years in reality either.

4) Field of Dreams (1989) – If you build it, they will come. Everyone knows this line. It’s also Kevin Costner’s best movie, take what you want from that statement. Ray Liotta and James Earl Jones also were good in this movie too. Haven’t seen it in a while though, and perhaps some stories are best left as is.

5) Road to the big Leagues (2008) – Hats off to the 2013 WBC Champions. Great documentary about baseball in the Dominican Republic, and not like that other baseball documentary in 1994, which was 18 hours long.

6)The Bad News Bears (1976, certainly not the 2005 remake!) – Classic movie that I enjoyed as a kid, but for them to try a 2005 remake was pointless. Things are too politically correct now. Which is a shame, because the 1976 one had some gems in it.

7) Brewster’s Millions (1985) – More of an off-field movie perhaps, but I have to admit, nostalgia plays some role here, as I found this movie hilarious when I was a kid. Plus it had Richard Pryor and John Candy. What says mid-80’s better than that? The downside is that you realize years later some athletes actually spend just as irrationally.

8) Unknown / Kokoyakyu (2008?) – I saw a random Japanese baseball documentary while on a plane from Japan. It made no sense verbally, yet I still was captivated by it and watched it (perhaps because all the other channels were in Japanese too, except some CNN nonsense). And it is not Kokoyakyu, though that seems to have a similar perspective and that one is worth a mention here too. Only difference is the one I saw on the plane had big league teams like the Seibu Lions in it. Hoping someone tells me the name of it!

9) The Sandlot (1993) – Two movies that are similar in some ways, but totally at other ends of the spectrum in some ways too. The Sandlot take you back in the era when movies for nostalgia circa generations past were quite upbeat (was released in 1993, but could have passed for a movie done earlier).

10) The Rookie (2002) – Yes its cheesy, but its a true story, disney-fied to some extent perhaps. Perhaps I’m giving credit to the actual story behind the movie rather than the movie though? However, what could have easily been “made for TV” style, was actually a decent showing.

11) Baseketball (1998) – Damn, this was 15 years ago? I put this at number 11, as I know plenty of people won’t count this as a baseball movie. But I don’t plan on making a base-ketball list!

Honorable mentions, movies I haven’t seen and other people’s suggestions: Bull Durham (which I know a lot of people would put on their own top 10), The Babe, A League of Their Own, Bang The Drum Slowly, Eight Men Out.

Missed anything? Probably, but there are 3 strikes allowed. Either way, enjoy opening day. If movies had any say, those Hollywood teams would win one this year.

Presidents Day Weekend – Faux President Movies

Saturday, February 16th, 2013

It’s Presidents Day Weekend. Great news for those with a day off because of it, which in this case actually includes me. And like we did for election day movies its time for a top 5 or 10 list.

But who cares about the actual presidents, no this list is about “Faux presidents”. So no JFK, Nixon, etc. And forget about Rutherford B. Hayes, Chester Arthur, Franklin Pierce, Millard Fillmore (though they’ve never even been acted out in movies) – these are previous “actual” US presidents who have had movies in which they were represented. And certainly forget about Daniel Day Lewis, playing the role of Lincoln, also an actual US president. Here are 5 that never existed, in no special order.

1) President Thomas “Tug” Benson
: the late Lloyd Bridges in Hot Shots (president role was in part two). Dumb comedy, the way a faux president should be.

2) President Tom Beck – Deep Impact was a 1998 movie and Morgan Freeman played the role of Pres Tom Beck. I remember when this movie came out, the whole controversy in the US about the role of president being played by an African American actor (let alone naming his character Tom Beck!!!!). And the whole wave of “world ending” movies circa late 90’s. I didn’t like this movie, but still remember it for some reason.

3) President James Dale – Jack Nicholson in Mars Attacks. Also in the 90’s (when my movie watching and influential days were at its finest). Its a Tim Burton film before it got too Tim Burton-y. Watchable if you’re in the mood to watch a movie that is “that” bad (which does happen at times). Which leads to…..

4) President Thomas J. Whitmore – Independence Day. This was on TV a few years ago. I recalled how it was a big money blockbuster back in the days, yet all I could think of was that the visuals were pretty poorly made, and movies in the 80’s were more discreet about doing imagery in a way one could still believe. This was big budget once?! However now, I’m more “glass half full”. And avid about “no budget / low budget” movies, like lo-fi music had won me over for a while…. and it helps me cue up a good choice for #5.



5) Unnamed President
– Fail Safe (the 1963 version directed by Lumet, featuring Henry Fonda as the president, who I don’t even think had a name) was so lofi yet it totally captivated me when I saw it (you guessed it, some point in the 90’s). However, it was tacky in the right way. It didn’t look like anything recent, but you still watched it.

The one problem with this, is that I think a fair few movies with fictional presidents didn’t have names at all on them. As for all time “actual” president representation – here’s a score card of how many movies were about each “real” president.

Best New Years Eve or New Years Day Movies….Not Really

Monday, December 31st, 2012

Got a few minutes here, so while I’ll spare our movie premier and DRE’s new years resolutions for the next post when its 2013, I wanted to use these few minutes to do a top 5 of new years eve and new years day movies. I thought about this and well, I couldn’t think of much.

While Harry Met Sally is popular with many, it’s not on my list. Sorry, I don’t know why people love this movie so much. It is however better than “New Years Eve” which despite its cast, I couldn’t watch for more than a minute! So lets keep it simple.

I do like The Hudsucker Proxy – which was filmed in North Carolina (one of our main locations) might I add. This is one of the more overlooked Coen brothers’ movies, and its also an underrated Tim Robbins movie. However, this does not compare even remotely to one of my favorite movies of all time.

Eddie Murphy in Trading Places of course, wishing a “Merry New Year” to you.

Top 10 Worst Christmas Movies

Tuesday, December 25th, 2012

Merry Christmas everyone! Long time, no post. Blame Time Warner, who I’m still waiting on (and can’t switch from, as they are the ONLY option here). Anyway, despite that, its been a good laid back holiday today. Back to work tomorrow though, working on plans for Dead Red Eyes in 2013, now that we’ve got to kick it up into the next gear. Our goal in mid October 2012 was to get things started, finish a screenplay and do a couple of short films. Those are done, and will be online soon (already submitted to various places in the meantime), along with ongoing commentary on how they progress.

Back on this site/blog though, I realized that a top 10 list for Xmas movies had not been made. However, everyone does that. So, lets resume grinch mode and pick the worst 10. And picking sequels is too easy, so there’s a no sequel policy on the first 5. Here we go…..

Worst Ten Christmas Movies:

1) Jingle All The Way: Ah-nold the working class man vs Postal worker Sinbad. Oh man, this movie is horrendous. It’s that movie that you watch because it is THAT bad. At least that’s the excuse you should go with. Even Phil Hartman can’t save this Xmas bag of coal. Am pretty sure Sinbad hasn’t done a movie since.

2) Jack Frost: Michael Keaton, reincarnated as a snowman. What I want to see is that moment where Keaton sees the script and goes “wow, this is great, I can’t wait to act in this”. Evened out the Batman and Beetlejuice roles I guess.

3) 8 Crazy Nights: I couldn’t even watch this whole thing, even on TV. It was that bad. It was like waking up from a bad hangover and saying to yourself “what did I do last night”. The “last night” being one where I liked Adam Sandler movies. Around that time, say 2002, I couldn’t ever watch any of his movies since. That is the effect it had.

4) It’s a Wonderful Life / The Family Man: Believe it or not, I’ve never seen more than 30 seconds of this movie. And people out there LOVE this flick. But Justin strongly insists I put this in my list. Will have to ask him why and get back to you on that. In the meantime, I nominate The Family Man. This movie plot-wise is the same thing, and it has Nicolas Cage doing his same style of acting that he does in every movie. Other than seeing him be a jackass, no reason to watch this.

5) Christmas With The Kranks: Tim Allen may have gotten away with the “no sequel” policy, but this makes the top list. I have to admit though, I haven’t seen most of this one either, so I’m going on other people’s strong recommendations on this. What, you think I make the lists by myself and watch crappy movies all day?

6 through 10) Christmas Sequels: Run them down….

Ernest saves Xmas, Home alone 5, (there was a 4th part!? I was going to write 3, but have been informed that a 4 and a 5 was made!), The Santa Clause (3 of those I think). And even though it’s technically not a sequel, 4 Christmases is enough to dampen any positive viewing spirits for the holidays. That’s more than enough right there. Back to my holiday, have a good one!

Top Ten Stoner, Reefer, Pot Movies

Sunday, November 18th, 2012

Earlier this month, voters in Washington and Colorado voted to ease the laws on smoking trees. I’m sure there won’t exactly be Amsterdam-esque cafe’s opening up tomorrow or anything, and public use is still banned in these states, but it was surprising to hear of this. My second thought was of making another top ten list, which is no way related i’m sure. Should also say, this isn’t necessarily just stoner comedies or anything like that (some are), but flicks with it as a key component of the story.

1. Up in Smoke (1978) – Cheech and Chong’s first full length film, enough said.

2. Dazed and Confused (1993) – Black Sabbath echoing through the neighborhood as high school seniors swat down mailboxes.

3. The Big Lebowski (1997) – “The Dude”. Great twisted comedy only slightly dampened by everyone saying “The Dude” in the year or so thereafter.

4. Reefer Madness (1936) – Twisted, an old propaganda film that’s plot-wise pretty useless. It got popular many years later for reasons that differ from what the group funding the original project probably intended.

5. Halloween (1978) – Lighting one up while Blue Oyster Cult plays in the car as a psychopath follows in the rearview mirror

6. Friday (1995) – Puff puff give, puff puff give. Classic. Just don’t make a sequel too many. Too late.

7. Maryjane (1968) – Haven’t seen this, but the title says enough.

8. Grass (1999) – A modern day documentary that looks at how the US government has spent loads of time and money on drug policy strategies, hosted by who else…. Woody Harrelson.

9. Half Baked (1998) – Dave Chappelle co-wrote and carried the comedy here.

10. The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (2009): Shoot him again, his soul is still dancing.

Other mentions.

The Trip (1967) – Written by Jack Nicholson (though more an LSD flick) back in his Easy Rider days (which also had Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda). Something tells me they “rehearsed” all parts many times….

Pineapple Express (2008) – Not sure what I thought of this movie, half of it is quite good, half of it is quite bad.  Many movies of all kinds in the mid 2000’s fit this sort of criteria, perhaps revised last minute to give the story more action.

Super Troopers (2001) – Bit of a “retro” movie in some ways, but a decent movie overall.

Grandma’s Boy (2006) – I didn’t know Adam Sandler was still making silly comedies after The Waterboy (or decent ones at least), but this one about a 35 year old pothead video game tester got good feedback from many places / and horrible feedback from others.  Sometimes that’s a good sign, better than if everyone says its average.  Haven’t seen it though, so can’t add my opinion.

Plenty of others I’m sure, but well…. I don’t quite remember.

Live From New York, It’s Saturday Night Live, Movies

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

I have to admit, its been a while since I’ve watched Saturday Night Live. In fact, I struggled to name three current cast members (had no idea Andy Samberg left). And there have been some horrible ideas come from this show when it comes to movies, a reason why five minute skits should not be 90 minute movies, maybe 80 if you discount the intro and credits. Which means you have 5-10 minutes to kill. So to fill those minutes… here’s a few movies that they maybe (should/could/probably better they did not) have done.

1) Wild and Crazy Guys: Instead of Night at the Roxbury. Ackroyd and Martin might have made this a good movie.

2) The Ambiguously Gay Duo: It’s animated, so easier to do. And they had about a dozen short versions of their stories, that one larger plot wouldn’t be too farfetched.

3) Toonces the driving cat: It would be a horrendous movie. You would already know the ending. And animal rights activists might complain. But done right, this could be hilarious. And it would allow nine crashes.

4) Mr. Belvedere Fan Club: This would be funnier now because it would make no sense to most and for someone to be into it now…? Surely there’s an online fan club, group, etc for everythinng.

5) Hans and Frans: Allegedly this was almost made and it even had Arnold cast for it. But it was never completed.

6) Matt Foley / Motivational Speaker: Because his life is more interesting than Pat’s. But no one could play this role other than Farley, so its perhaps a non factor.

It’s not a top 10 list, as well, most of these skits should not be movies (such as “Pat”) and largely Waynes’ World is to blame.  Will have to make up for it by putting 14 on the next list.