Monday, April 30, 2012

17/50x2: Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

I just did a quick look and Paul Newman has a vast number of films on his resume, but before doing this list I had only seen three - but I have now seen two more. Before watching these movies I had only seen Slap Shot, Road to Perdition (which I've only seen once, but will be seeing it again soon in my HOT) and Cars.

The first of the two I watched was Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. Newman stars as Butch, a thief who is the leader of a small gang of crooks. He is the brains of the operation, though feared, he had never shot a man before. His partner in crime is The Sundance Kid (Robert Redford), who is the crack shot of the group.

After defeating a member of his own group who was trying to take over as leader, Butch and the group decide to rob the Union Pacific Flyer, a train carrying money, twice. Once going and once coming. Their thought process was that after being robbed once, they would reload the train with even more money never expecting to be robbed a second time.

But, this backfired on the gang as too much dynamite was used exploding the safe during the second robbery and money is thrown everywhere. As the group is trying to gather as much money as possible, another train arrives with men on it protecting the money and looking to apprehend Butch and The Kid.

The rest of the film is this group tracking Butch and The Kid, and them trying to stay two-steps ahead. The two even received a normal job protecting a mining companies payroll - and when they get ambushed, Butch is forced to kill his first man. Realizing they are much better crooks, they decide to return to a life of crime.

After the theft of the payroll, they find a small town - and are finally tracked down by the men.

I didn't mind this film when I watched it, but it obviously didn't make that much of an impression on me. I had difficulty remembering a lot of what happened in the film.

I enjoyed the younger Newman and definitely Redford. They worked well together, and makes me want to consider watching The Sting as well.

I am glad I finally watched it, and if I stumbled across it I might sit and watch it again, but it's not one I would throw in the DVD player again anytime soon.


(2) Yoda vs. (2) Luke Skywalker

I had the seedings pretty much down until the quarterfinals. Yoda demolished Obi-Wan Kenobi, while Luke Skywalker barely snuck past Han Solo.

The semifinals begin today. Today's vote selects the winner of the Light Side and who will be going up against tomorrow's Dark Side winner.

(2) Yoda

Yoda made it to the semifinals by knocking off Chancellor Valorum in the first round; a noble foe Wicket in round two, Princess Leia in round three and finally Obi-Wan Kenobi in the quarterfinals.

(2) Luke Skywalker

Luke Skywalker lands in today's semifinals by defeating Lobot in the first round; Nien Nunb was next in the second round; a difficult victory in the third round over Chewbacca and finally squeaking past Han Solo in the quarterfinals.
Updated Bracket

Sunday, April 29, 2012

HOT: Joe vs. the Volcano

I remember watching this film when I was younger and not liking it very much. Since rewatching it, I feel I like it a bit more - but it is still not up to par with most of Tom Hanks' films.

Anyway, Hanks plays the titular character Joe in Joe vs. the Volcano. This is Hanks first time costarring with Meg Ryan. They will star together in two more films in the 90s, which of course I will get to in the near future.

So, Joe works in this boring factory where he trounces in to work each day and sits with flickering fluorescent lights above him. He drinks crappy coffee and puts up with a pain in the butt boss each and every day. Plus, he has a crush on a coworker, DeDe (Ryan), but never does anything about it.

Finally, he is a hypochondriac. Joe visits his doctor on a regular basis constantly thinking he has some sort of disease - but really he may just be hoping for something exciting to happen in his life. On this one day, the doctor announces that Joe has a 'brain cloud' and will die within six months.

With the news, Joe quits his job and asks DeDe out - which actually goes well until he tells her he is dying. The next day he is visited by a wealthy man, Samual Graynamore (Lloyd Bridges), who asks him to do the unthinkable - jump into a volcano. Graynamore needs to mine on a small island called Waponi Woo and the locals will allow him to do so if he can find them someone to appease the volcano and jump into it.

So, with nothing really to lose, Joe agrees. Graynamore sets him up with a credit card and he goes nuts with it - with his main purchase being these large trunks to carry is clothes. He is to set sail to the island and when he arrives he will be treated like a king then he must jump into the volcano.

On the ship, he meets Patricia (also played by Ryan - she played three roles in this film). Patricia is Graynamore's granddaughter and she has only agreed to bring Joe to this island because she was promised the yacht that she loves so much once he is delivered.

While bonding on the boat, a typhoon hits and Patricia is knocked unconscious. Joe jumps into save her and as he does the boat is hit by lightning and sinks. Luckily he purchased those trunks, because he was able to string them all together to form a life raft.

I won't say anything else about it except that they do manage to make it to the island, and the island folk are in love with orange soda.

As I said at the top, this movie was not a favorite of mine when I was younger. It was very bleak and dull in the beginning, but it does manage to pickup once he actually finds out he is dying (odd to say, but it's true). I'd say it has grown on me a bit with repeat viewings, but it is still lacking compared to other Hanks films.

It is also a bit unbelievable at times - but you have to let that slide, I guess.

Overall, a decent little film that I can watch whenever it's on, but not one that I would search to see again.


Saturday, April 28, 2012

(1) Darth Vader vs. (2) Boba Fett

Well, it took almost the entire day, but Luke Skywalker snuck past Han Solo. Yoda, though, rolled past Obi-Wan Kenobi.

The Light Side semis are set. But, who will make it in the Dark Side?

Vote for both please!

(1) Darth Vader

"We would be honored if you would join us."

(2) Boba Fett

"What if he doesn't survive? He's worth a lot to me."

(2) Darth Maul vs. (5) Jabba the Hutt

(2) Darth Maul

"Tatooine is sparsely populated. If the homing trace is correct, I will find them quickly, Master!"

(5) Jabba the Hutt

"Bring me Solo and the Wookiee. They will all suffer for this outrage."

Friday, April 27, 2012

(1) Han Solo vs. (2) Luke Skywalker

Well, Darth Maul and Boba Fett each move forward completing the third round.

As we move into the quarterfinals it appears that the seedings have been pretty straight forward on the Light Side with both No. 1's and No. 2's remaining. But, who will wind up in the semifinals? We will know after today.

Vote for both!

(1) Han Solo

"Sorry about the mess."

(2) Luke Skywalker

"NO! That's impossible."

Updated Bracket

(1) Obi-Wan Kenobi vs. (2) Yoda

(1) Obi-Wan Kenobi

"Use the force, Luke!"

(2) Yoda

"Do, or do not. There is no try."

Thursday, April 26, 2012

(2) Boba Fett vs. (3) Count Dooku

Darth Vader and Jabba the Hutt ease their way into the quarterfinals for the Dark Side.

Final matchups of round three today. Vote for both!

(2) Boba Fett

"He's no good to me dead."

(3) Count Dooku

"I have become more powerful than any Jedi...even you."

Updated Bracket

(2) Darth Maul vs. (6) Grand Moff Tarkin

(2) Darth Maul

"At last we will reveal ourselves to the Jedi. At last we will have revenge."

(6) Grand Moff Tarkin

"If you're right, he must not be allowed to escape."


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

(1) Darth Vader vs. (13) Stormtrooper

The two No. 2's move into the quarterfinals. Luke Skywalker sneaks past Chewbacca while Yoda easily moves past Princess Leia.

Dark Side's third round begins today. Make sure to vote for both.

(1) Darth Vader

"The force is with you, young Skywalker, but you are not a Jedi yet."

(13) Stormtrooper

"Let me see your identification."

(5) Jabba the Hutt vs. (9) Tusken Raider

(5) Jabba the Hutt

"There will be no bargain, young Jedi. I shall enjoy watching you die."

(9) Tusken Raider


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

(2) Luke Skywalker vs. (6) Chewbacca

Han Solo rolls over his old buddy, Lando, and into the quarterfinals. Obi-Wan Kenobi, meanwhile, barely slips past our favorite astro droid, but he also lands in the quarterfinals.

Final two matchups for the Light Side's third round. Remember to vote for both.

(2) Luke Skywalker

"I'm endangering the mission. I shouldn't have come."

(6) Chewbacca


Updated Standings

(2) Yoda vs. (3) Princess Leia

(2) Yoda

"You must unlearn what you have learned."

(3) Princess Leia

"Some day you're going to be wrong, I just hope I'm there to see it."

Tuesday's With Movies: 4/24/12

Slim pickens this week in the release department, but here they are.

Contraband: Looks to be a nice little smuggling movie with a bunch of stars that I don't mind watching. I will definitely be checking this one out when I can. Mark Wahlberg, Kate Beckinsale, Giovanni Ribisi and Ben Foster, I'm in.

Innkeepers: Definitely not my cup of tea.

Monday, April 23, 2012

(1) Han Solo vs. (4) Lando Calrissian

In the final second round matchups, Count Dooku and Grand Moff Tarkin land in the third round.

Again, two matchups per day in the third round. Light Side continues today. Enjoy!

(1) Han Solo

"Get in there, you big furry oaf. I don't care what you smell."

(4) Lando Calrissian

"Why you slimy, double-crossing, no-good, swindler."

Updated Bracket

(1) Obi-Wan Kenobi vs. (5) R2-D2

(1) Obi-Wan Kenobi

"That's no moon. It's a space station"

(5) R2-D2


Friday, April 20, 2012

(3) Count Dooku vs. (6) Bossk

Jabba the Hutt and the Stormtrooper roll into the third round.

The Dark Side's second round wraps up today. Make sure to vote for both.

(3) Count Dooku

Count Dooku was portrayed by Christopher Lee in both Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. Fun Fact: Dooku was apparently one of the best lightsaber duelers and was one of just a few who was able to best Mace Windu when Dooku was still a Jedi.

(6) Bossk

Bossk was portrayed by Alan Harris in both Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Fun Fact: In the extended universe, Bossk is a rival of both Chewbacca and Han Solo many times.

Updated Bracket

(3) Jango Fett vs. (6) Grand Moff Tarkin

(3) Jango Fett

Jango Fett was portrayed by Temuera Morrison in Attack of the Clones and he also played all of the clone troopers. Fun Fact: Before the name Jango was selected, a few other names kicked around were Ambu and J'mee.

(6) Grand Moff Tarkin

Grand Moff Tarkin was portrayed by Peter Cushing in A New Hope and by Wayne Pygram in Revenge of the Sith. Fun Fact: Cushing was originally approached to play Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

(12) Dengar vs. (13) Stormtrooper

Boba Fett and Darth Maul easily move into the third round.

Today two more matchups for the Dark Side. Vote for both.

(12) Dengar

Dengar was portrayed by Morris Bush in both Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Fun Fact: During the Clone Wars cartoon episode "Bounty" Dengar was voiced by Simon Pegg.

(13) Stormtrooper

A ton of different people were stormtroopers. Fun Fact: In early drafts stormtroopers were originally to carry lightsabers and shields.

Updated Bracket

(4) General Grievous vs. (5) Jabba the Hutt

(4) General Grievous

General Grievous was voiced by Matt Wood in Revenge of the Sith. Fun Fact: The apparent reason for Grievous' asthmatic cough was that in a previous fight, Mace Windu crushed his chest panel with The Force.

(5) Jabba the Hutt

Jabba the Hutt is voiced by Larry Ward in Return of the Jedi. Fun Fact: Jabba was an animatronic puppet in Jedi and CGI in both A New Hope and Phantom Menace. It took three puppeteers to control Jabba's many movements.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

HOT: The 'Burbs

I first saw this film when I was younger and it sort of freaked me out. I don't think I have watched it in its entirety since then until I just recently watched it. This review/synopsis will have a ton of spoilers, so read only if you have seen or don't want to see.

Tom Hanks stars as Ray Peterson in The 'Burbs. He is married to Carol (Carrie Fisher) and live on a cul-de-sac in a suburban neighborhood.

It's your typical neighborhood as everyone is always in everyone elses business and the gossip runs pretty wild. But, nothing is too over the top and everyone, for the most part, gets along. One of the neighbors that the rest of the neighbors deal with, but don't really get along with is Walter (Gale Gordon), who has a dog that goes to the bathroom on people's lawns.

A new family, the Klopeks, move into the neighborhood and they are a big odd. They keep to themselves and really don't fit in with the rest of the neighbors. One night the rest of the neighborhood, including the Petersons, Lt. Mark Rumsfeld (Bruce Dern) and Art Weingartner (Rick Ducommun) head over the Klopeks house to introduce themselves. They meet Werner (Henry Gibson), Reuben (Brother Theodore) and Hans Klopek (Courtney Gains) and the suspicions of the men in the group grow even more after meeting them.

Once Walter goes missing the neighbors step up their snooping around, and Ray even believes he sees the Klopeks digging in the back yard of their house during the night.

When the Klopeks head out for a meeting at the local university, Mark, Art and Ray break into their house to do some more snooping around. When they venture into the basement they find a huge furnace that can get to as high of 5,000 degrees.

Stuck in the basement, and looking for dead bodies, the Klopeks discover the basement light on and call the police. While digging, Ray hits a gas line and the house explodes into flames. But, Ray is able to escape with only a few minor injuries.

While in the ambulance, Werner Klopek jumps into the back thinking Ray has seen skulls of the people they have killed in the basement. Werner tried to kill Ray and as they are fighting, Ricky (Corey Feldman) discovers a ton of bones in the back of the Klopek's trunk.

After rewatching it the film is actually pretty enjoyable. We've all seen this type of neighborhood, or at least have heard of it, the one where everyone is so gossipy and they are always looking at someone else as having issues. But, here the people actually did have issues - and the neighbors made themselves crazy and broke the law just to prove it.

The characters in the film were outstanding. I enjoyed all of them, especially Ray and Ricky.