Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Episode 16: "Die Hard"

So apparently numerous women get "Die Hard" and "Lethal Weapon" confused as Lindsey wasn't the only one who came into the evening thinking we were going to see Mel Gibson's mullet. I guess it makes sense. They're both from the same general era, they're both excellent blends of action and comedy, and they both vaguely revolve around Christmas (opening shots to "Lethal Weapon" are set to "Jingle Bell Rock"). However, while both are good, there is no contemporary to "Die Hard."

I'm just going to say it (and perhaps one particular reader will ridicule me for this): "Die Hard" is the greatest action movie of all time. Period. There really isn't any room for discussion. It has every single thing you could ever want in an action movie. Does it have some ridiculous moments? Of course. But it doesn't revel in them the way, say, the average Michael Bay film does. Or maybe it does. You know, to be honest, it's hard to write an unbiased review of "Die Hard." It's just too awesome to be fair and unbiased. "Die Hard" is the mother of all action movies. No, the bully that all other action movies are afraid of yet secretly revere. It takes all other action movies out back and beats the tar out of them but the other action movies still try to hang around it because maybe "Die Hard" will teach them to be cool.

Despite how good of an action film it is, however, it would be only a pretty good movie without Bruce Willis and Alan Rickman. Rickman's Hans Gruber is one of the top 10 villains of all time. And yet, for me, he doesn't come close to how great Willis's John McClane is. This is one of those times where you could easily root for the bad guy if it weren't for the fact that the hero is one of the toughest, smartest, most awesome son-of-a-gun to ever grace the screen. I mean, the dude is taking down German terrorists WITHOUT SHOES! How do you top that? Scene after scene, Willis/McClane just nails it. While this was his first real action role, Willis was absolutely the perfect choice. He is the quintessential Man's Man playing the quintessential Man's Man. If anyone else plays McClane, Rickman dominates the poor guy. But not Bruce. Bruce is just too stinking good here. In fact I blame his perfomance here for several hours I've wasted on films like "The Jackal" and "16 Blocks" (not to mention "Die Hard 2 and 3") just on the off chance that Willis would repeat his awesomeness once more. "Die Hard" has been out for over 20 years and when "Surrogates," by all accounts a true stinker, hits Blockbuster in a couple of weeks, I'll probably check it just out of respect for Willis and this film. A+.

Best character: See above

Best scene: The final shootout with Hans.
There's a ton of great scenes but this one is iconic for me. The dude has tapes a gun to the back of his head! That's still one of the coolest things I've ever seen in a movie.

Best Line:
A ton that I can't repeat but...
(note attached to dead terrorist): "Ho ho ho. Now I have a machine gun." Classic.

"John McClane v. Jack Bauer" would be a spectacular matchup,

"Die Hard" through Lindsey's eyes:

As the movie was starting, I began asking questions. I decided that with these action movies, sometimes it's a little hard for me to follow. So I need a synopsis of what I could expect. It was at that moment that I realized we weren't watching "Lethal Weapon." This whole time, as I've been waiting to see this movie, I had "Lethal Weapon" in my head. I thought Mel Gibson's terrible mullet was about to pop up on screen, but no, it was Bruce Willis. Who knew? Amazingly, two other girls thought the same thing. I'm not a complete idiot.

I actually enjoyed this movie. I enjoy an action movie that has some great 80's humor in it. The terrorists reminded me of the bad karate guys on Karate Kid. Bruce Willis was definitely the Jack Bauer of the 80's, but a little timid. I guess you have to be a little timid if you don't have shoes. Then, Bruce Willis' wife totally looked like a mix between Dylan McKay's mom on 90210 and April from TMNT.

My favorite characters of the movie are Carl Winslow and Argyle. It was nice seeing Carl play a very similar role to "Family Matters," but without his annoying family and Urkle. Then there's Argyle, The Limo Driver. Oh how I love limos. Limos just bring a little joy to my heart. Argyle had that great joy in his heart as well, while driving that limo. He knew how lucky he was to hold a job like that. The Limo Driver.

Overall, it was entertaining. There's a 50% chance I may watch it again if I'm browsing the TV and it happens to show up on TBS.

I'm fascinated by large cars with gadgets,

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Episode 15: "Big Business"

"Big Business" is another classic movie from my childhood. It has been at least ten years since I had last seen it, but all the memories and quotes came back to me as I was watching. For those who haven't seen the movie, it is about two sets of twins that are switched at birth. A Bette Midler is switched into the small town Lily Tomlin family and a Lily Tomlin is switched into the rich snobby Bette Midler family. It was even better than I had remembered.

As a kid, I adored Bette Midler. I loved her red hair and her loud singing. She wore all the cute outfits in the movie, so of course I wanted to be her. I ALWAYS decided which character I liked best by their fashion. I also had a great love for 80's Business Women. So I admired her respect and high heels.

I thought for sure I was going to feel a little embarrassed for making Brian watch this one. But as I was watching it, I changed my mind. The movie is totally legit and still entertaining. I kind of wish they would do a remake of this movie. I would love to see this movie again, but made with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

Where is Lily Tomlin these days,

I admit I entered into the viewing of "Big Business" with great trepidation. The description I was given made it sound like "The Parent Trap" but set in the 80's, which wouldn't be so bad until I heard two terrible words: Bette. Midler.

Better Midler, for me (and 99% of the straight males in the world), is an IMMEDIATE out. If she's associated with a project, I want nothing to do with it. Acting, music, whatever, it doesn't matter, I'm done. She is a serious beating. So loud and over the top. And that voice. I'm very voice-centric. I don't know why, it's just something that matters a lot to me. There are certain entertainers who I love or hate based solely on their voice. Bette Midler's voice grates on me worse than just about anybody else out there. And it really weirds me out that Lindsey liked ol' Bette so much back in the day. Blerg.

Anyway, surprisingly, I found "Big Business" to be not so bad. It was far from original and there weren't many laugh out loud moments, but it was a pretty solid showing. I liked it better than "Sixteen Candles," actually, which I would definitely not have predicted at the beginning of this project. (That sentence cannot possibly be grammatically correct.) In truth, I don't remember too much about this because we watched it approximately four months ago but I vaguely remember enjoying the movie in spite of Bette Midler. I am totally on board for a remake with the great Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Lily Tomlin could reappear as one of the supporting characters like Burt Reynolds did in the "Longest Yard" remake or Leonard Nimoy did in the new "Star Trek." But not Bette Midler. Better Midler has to continue her decade long movie hiatus. It's for the better of mankind. B.

Here's a picture of Bette with 50 Cent. I don't know why. I just felt like it needed to be shared.

I can't remember any scenes or lines,