Posted in Blog Posts, Flick Central

Better off Dead, created by Savage Steve Holland: a Film Review


High school student Lane Myer’s two major interests are his popular girlfriend, Beth, and skiing. When Beth dumps him for handsome and popular Roy Stalin, head of the ski team, Lane is thrown into a suicidal tailspin as the Christmas season starts.

Between attempts to take his own life, he works on plans to either show Beth he can get over her, deciding to show Stalin that he can beat him at the K12 ski route. While trying to win her back, Lane begins to realize that maybe his life isn’t so bad.  His best friend, and junkie, Charles is right by his side encouraging him step by step.  The French exchange student, Monique, across the street, befriends him as a way to get out of the horrible house she is living in.  And his crazy family goes about their days doing their own little things from fighting with the newspaper boy to making creative meals that occasionally walk away of their own accord.

As Monique and Lane become closer, bonding over rebuilding his 1967 Camaro, his hallucinations about trying to get back together with Beth or to take his life continue.  He eventually challenges Stalin to racing on the K12 in order to prove that he is better and to win Beth back in the process.

General Information:

-Genre: Teen Black Comedy

-Creator: Savage Steve Holland

-Length: 97 minutes

-Rating: PG (for mild violence, mild drug use and innuendo, suicide attempts and suicidal ideology, some surreal violence)

-Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (Buy/Rent), iTunes (Buy/Rent), DVD, Blu-Ray, or look for it at your local library

-Main Cast: John Cusack, Curtis Armstrong, Diane Franklin, David Ogden Stiers, Kim Darby

-Page of Reference in RP1: 62

Review (contains spoilers):

This is a frequently watched film in my house and has been since I was young.  Its to the point that I can, and often do, repeat lines throughout the entire film.

It’s a fun and quite silly look into the teenage brain.  Lane is absolutely obsessed with Beth and it is NOT healthy.  But this does commonly happen in teenagers.  They can become so obsessed with someone or something that death seems easier than living without that person/thing.

Even with presented with different options it really takes a LOT for Lane to snap out of it.  Of course, his parents are completely oblivious to the entire thing happening (though his father does try to connect with him at one point).  He is left to deal with everything his own way.

And overall, he does a decent job.  Seeing into his mind is a blast.  The over exaggeration of everyone around him wanting something or other is just fantastic.

I definitely recommend it to families with teens…or really anyone who enjoys 1980s comedy. The “Everybody wants SOME” scene is CLASSIC 1980s surreal Claymation perfection.


Rating: 5 out of 5.

Posted in Flick Central

Career Opportunities, created by John Hughes: a Film Review


Jim Dodge, the town dreamer and spinner of yarns, has been fired yet again from another low-paying job.  When he gets home, he is given a choice by his father: interview at the local Target to be the overnight cleaning boy or get on a bus to Saint Louis and make his way there.

He takes the job at Target and finds out on his first night there that he will be locked in the store by himself, overnight, to clean the store.  As he messes around between cleaning, he stumbles upon a girl who has been locked into the store.

They begin to connect over the course of the night learning about each other.  Josie fell asleep in Target when she chickened out on shoplifting in an attempt to get away from her abusive father.  Jim reveals (though he doesn’t realize it) that he simply wants to stay at home because he won’t end up lonely.  Josie propositions Jim to join her in California with the $52,000 she has hidden in her purse.

But when two murderers make their way into the store the pair have to think fast or end up dead… suddenly abusive and overbearing parents are the least of their worries.

General Information:

-Genre: Romantic Comedy

-Creator: John Hughes

-Length: 83 minutes

-Rating: PG-13 (mild to moderate sex and nudity)

-Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (Buy/Rent), iTunes (Buy/Rent), DVD, Blu-Ray, or look for it at your local library

-Main Cast: Frank Whaley, Jennifer Connelly, Dermot Mulroney, Kieran Mulroney, John M. Jackson, Jenny O’Hara, Noble Willingham

-Page of Reference in RP2: 182

Review (contains spoilers):

Such a good film and the twist was something I was not expecting.  Though I want to know how they got Target to agree to them destroying the entire store…. however I guess the publicity worked because even 30 years after the film was made it made me want to go to Target.  Touché.

I mean it’s a John Hughes film so it had to be at least decent.  I don’t think I’ve seen a movie of his that I haven’t enjoyed. At least not to where I currently am in my life.  But I was a little shocked that I had never even heard of this one… which is my fault because I haven’t completed the Almanac and Ready Player One does list all the John Hughes movies as a reference so go me.

The whole movie is just one silly thing after another as they fall in love in the middle of TARGET. Its like every Millennial’s dream. Go into Target and fall in love. Though running for your life from murderers isn’t really ideal.

It is another winner from John Hughes.


Rating: 4 out of 5.
Posted in Blog Posts, Flick Central, Week of Love

Real Genius, created by Neal Israel and Pat Proft: a film Review


The CIA is determined to create a new “peace time” weapon, codename Crossbow, that uses a high-powered laser to eliminate potential threats before they become terrorists.  To do so they recruit the help of a well-know college professor to create the laser needed to pull off this accomplishment.

Meanwhile, 15-year-old Mitch is accepted to the college for mid-winter term due to his insane intellect.  Rooming with genius and role model, Chris Knight, proves to be vastly different from the idea that Mitch builds up in his head.  Knight is a bit of a prankster and overall chill guy compared to tightly wound genius Mitch.

As the pair find their differences and turn them into strengths to help each other through the difficult final semester for Knight, they work to create an incredibly powerful laser that will be Knight’s ticket to graduation.

But when they are forced to see what possible uses someone would have for a laser that big and powerful they must come to terms with the fact that sometimes, as scientists, you need to think about the practical applications of your creations…and come to terms with the fact that they may not be used for the good and hopeful reasons you would want them to be…

General Information:

-Genre: Science Fiction Teen Comedy

-Creator: Neal Israel and Pat Proft

-Length: 106 minutes

-Rating: PG (for mild sex, nudity and sexual innuendo, mild profanity, mild partying)

-Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (Buy/Rent), iTunes (Buy/Rent), STARZ (with subscription), HBO Go (with subscription), DVD, Blue-Ray, or look for it at your local library

-Main Cast: Val Kilmer, Gabe Jarret, Michelle Meyrink, William Atherton, Robert Prescott, Jon Gries

-Page of Reference in RP1: 62

Review (contains spoilers):

Such a great comedy and one of my top watched movies of all time.  It is a staple in my vocabulary to quote lines from this film.  And there are plenty of them that are quotable.

I love the story, the quirky characters and the fact that, though the science is incredibly above my head as I know nothing about optics, everything discussed is relatable.  It isn’t about the science.  You don’t have to know anything to love this film.

Witty and sarcastic this whole movie is an absolute gem of late ‘80s comedy.   From the child genius on a college campus (and in a dorm!) to the fact that the bad guy is someone in the faculty…its just an overall ridiculous film that is just as funny after the first watch as the 100th.  Plus, it has a great soundtrack.


Rating: 4 out of 5.