In with the Old: The Mighty Ducks

Recently, I found myself with some time on my hands and saw that all three of the Mighty Ducks films were on Netflix and thought, “Eh, why not?” I am an adult, therefore, giving me the ability to choose to spend my day watching stupid kids movies. I had a lot of thoughts while watching and thought I would share them with all of you.

MD

Pretty sure that this movie gave me a misconception about the 1970’s. I thought they were a very hazy time… Actually, maybe it wasn’t too much of a misconception.

MD1

Sometimes I think that Disney is a little too heavy-handed in pointing out that someone is a bad boy. Beer! Loud music! Sassing cops!

MD2

Am I too logical in thinking that this prank wouldn’t work on someone driving by? A passerby, sure, but someone driving by is going to come to a screeching halt to stop in the middle of the street and steal a purse? Maybe I’ve seen too many Russian traffic cams of truckers saving kittens.

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md3

I’m glad that at least the closed captioning gave credit where credit was due. Also, I posit that a kids sports movie cannot exist without the snarky trash talker (see also: Ham from The Sandlot, Tanner Boyle from The Bad News Bears, etc.)

md5

Seriously, inquiring minds would like to know, is that a phone?

md6

FART JOKE!

md7
Gordon Bombay. Possibly the best name in film history. Also, the best shoulder pads in the biz.

md8

Bombay, you know how movies work, right? Of course, it had to be the Hawks.

md9

Pretty sure that my brother and I were incapable of going to hockey games between the years of 1993-present (?) without saying this.

md10

Ah, the good old days when teenage boys had to make do with issues of Sports Illustrated.

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You know it’s a 90’s movie when the menacing gang is on roller blades.

md12

Hans is the Yoda of this movie. So wise. So sage.

md13

Little baby Joshua Jackson!

md14

Oh, movie, I don’t need you to tell me when Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch is playing.

md15

Do I need to call Social Services on this 22 year old movie?

md16

Again, this movie is really delivering on the 90’s awesomeness. Roller blading through the mall?!

md17

The movie the made quacking a haunting battle cry to all 90’s kids.

md18

It’s so convenient that the entire team is in this one Chemistry class, despite the fact that some of them look like they are 5 years apart in age.

md19

Gordon, stop quacking!

md20

Don’t we all, Banks. Let the rich kid play, Ducks! The cake-eater has two more movies to do.

md21

This has to be either the weakest net ever or this puck just defied the laws of physics, right?

md22

What publication is this that has front page headlines about a Minnesota Pee-Wee hockey team?

md23

Haha hijinks. Even as a kid, I thought Emilio laughed weird.

md24

Yeah, go for it, Bombay. She will never be able to resist you in that Cosby sweater. What woman could?

md25

Does Disney have a contractual stipulation that there must be a contrived romance that nobody watching the movie will really care about and that won’t last into the sequel?

md26

Again, what is this “Hockey Publication” and where did they get these pictures of these pee-wee hockey coaches? I would really like to see a Newsroom like TV show about this paper.

md27

What kind of douchebag father isn’t going to root for his son’s team? I don’t care how rich your friends are.

md28

Aw, Banks. You took the stick out of your butt. Presh. See you in MD2!

md29

Um, Bombay, you need to win. Haven’t you seen a Disney sports movie?

md30

You just know that they were so stoked on this shot. “Aw man, this is going to look so cool.”

md31

I cannot believe this worked. I’m supposed to believe that these kids who are growing up on the ice have never seen someone do a scratch spin?

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Flying V! Ducks fly together!

md33

Bombay, you are not helping the “Coach’s Pet” taunts that he has been getting. Also, what exactly has Charlie done to elicit this confidence? Other than let you bone his mom.

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QUACK, QUACK, QUACK! Now THAT’S how you end a Disney sports movie.md35 Wah-wah, Hawks. It’s because you didn’t have a humorous yet cool chant and, most importantly, because you weren’t having fun out there.md36 Hold the phone. Bombay is leaving his lucrative law career to possibly be a minor league hockey player? At his age?

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It must really suck for Charlie that he is the only one of these kids with a present parent. She really cramps his style.

Who wants to go watch this movie on Netflix now?  Sorry if I spoiled it for you.

Ellen

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In with the Old: The Sandlot

The-Sandlot-SquintsBaseball season.  The smell of freshly cut grass, the taste of peanuts and Cracker Jack, the sound of the crowd roaring in the stadiums.  But for this girl, the best part of baseball season is the yearning I get to watch The Sandlot.   Granted, this is coming from the girl who spent a good portion of a Dodgers game analyzing the Padres right fielder’s butt, but everything I know about baseball, I learned from The Sandlot.  How else is a 7-year old to learn who the “Great Bambino” is?

If you’re reading this post, you probably don’t need me to tell you what a great movie it is, but it’s a great movie.  It’s one of those rare family movies that the whole family can actually enjoy.  We must have watched it at least 100 times (no joke) in my family.  It’s the only way to explain why I can still quote the entire movie.  And why I still think that Benny “The Jet” Rodriguez is the perfect man.

More than anything, I love Sandlot for it’s heart.  There are few movies that capture childhood as well as this movie.  It only makes me sad that kids don’t seem to have summers like that anymore, running around the neighborhood getting up to antics kids get up to.  Blame it on To Catch a Predator, kids with iPads, or whatever it is we are blaming these sorts of things on these days.

So here’s to summers of big dogs, throwing up on Scramblers, Wendy Peffercorn, playing ball “like a girl”, S’mores, and shaving your dog’s butt and teaching it to walk backwards.

Don’t lie.  You want to watch Sandlot now, right?  Don’t be ashamed, it doesn’t take much for me either.

Ellen

TV Obituaries: RIP Better Off Ted

Better-off-Ted-better-off-ted-10352512-2000-1331You know what I hate? I mean, other than perfume commercials, mashed potatoes, or sentences that end in a preposition? I hate watching a young show get cut down in it’s prime. Three years after its cancellation, I’m still reeling from the loss of ABC’s Better Off Ted. Speaking as someone who strongly feels that the world can never have enough zany workplace comedies, the show was the bright spot of my week during its brief two season run.

On paper, the premise of this show seems pretty ho-hum. Ted Crisp (Jay Harrington) manages a research and development team for a massive corporation. Bored yet? Then perhaps I should mention that Ted’s boss, the stoic and well-coiffed Veronica, is played by the one and only Portia de Rossi, with all the stellar comedic timing and deadpanned delivery we’ve come to love. Oh, are you back on board? Awesome. Let’s proceed.

Of course, you can’t have a great workplace comedy without some great writing attached. I can’t tell you how many funny one-liners I’ve pilfered from this show. Oh no… there’s no stopping it… I feel a cluster-quote coming…!

There was the time Ted and his love interest/employee Linda invented the game of throwing stale bagels into an air vent:

Ted: What are you afraid of? If you throw a game, it’s gonna keep you out of the time-wasters hall of fame?
Linda: No. My position there is secure from getting my art history degree.

Or the time Ted inadvertently forced Ryan the security guard to quit his job:

Linda: So did you hear the latest office gossip? Ryan the security guard quit his job because you’re a giant douche-mobile. That’s right, you’re a douche on wheels. Or perhaps a decorative sculpture hanging above a baby douche’s crib. The gossip didn’t specify.

And how could we forget Veronica, the company mouth-piece:
Veronica: If you want to get the company off this, you have to show them that this new pace will cost them money. Because the company loves its money. If they could, they’d go to strip clubs and throw naked women at money.

Like the Temptations, I ain’t too proud to bed. Please, please, please, watch this show. You can find both seasons now on Netflix streaming!
-Whitney

In with the Old: Heart and Souls

Heart20and20SoulsOnce upon a Sundance Film Festival, I happened upon one Robert Downey Jr.  This was pre-Iron Man and pre-his comeback.  The crowd was clamoring around him, whispering about his priors and calling out to him.  Struggling to get his attention, I yelled out the first thing that came to my mind.

“I loved you in Heart and Souls!”

He stopped trying to escape the masses, turned to me, and said, “I don’t get that one too often.”

He then proceeded to his Black SUV, but I will always remember that as the time that RDJ and I bonded.

The important thing about that story is that I wasn’t lying when I said that.  It came from the heart.  No matter how big he gets, to me he’ll always be that guy strolling down the streets of San Francisco singing “Walk Like a Man” with his ghost pals.

This movie was my jam when I was a kid.  I got it on DVD for Christmas this year and I was anxious to see if it would hold up, but it delivered in spades.  I have yet to determine whether that is purely based on nostalgic reasons, but whatever, it warmed the cockles of my heart and isn’t that what matters?

The basic plot of Heart of Souls  centers on RDJ’s character, Thomas, who was born near a bus crash and as a result was granted/cursed with the four “guardian angels” of the victims.  With the mounting child psychologists and calls home, the angels decide to watch him in silence.  However, when Thomas is a grown man they are told that they were supposed to be using him as vessle to settle their unfinished business.  They are given a little extra time to do so, but Thomas does not take seeing his former “imaginary friends” very well.  Crazy hijinks and tender moments ensue.

While much of my love for this movie probably stems from those memories of watching this in my family’s basement and dancing along with Thomas and the gang, I still feel like I can say it’s a good movie.  Not a great movie, but a good one.

After that resounding recommendation, have I sold you?  Did anyone connect to this movie on a visceral level as a 7 year old?

Ellen

In With the Old: Clue

Tell me if we were  the only kids who did this:  Whenever I visited my cousins (or visa versa) growing up we would always do this thing when we watched movies together.  Either prior to starting the movie or at the very beginning, we would pick a character to “be”, so if someone is a character who later gets slapped, we’d say things like, “That looks like that would hurt”.  Or if someone’s character is somewhat risque, we would call each other “naughty” or “a bad girl”.  Keep in mind that we were young and innocent, so our vocabulary of more scathing remarks was limited.

Our favorite movie to watch together had to be Clue because we watched it close to every time that we visited each other.   My cousins and I would fight over who got to be Ms. Scarlet or even Yvette the maid, because we were impressionable little girls growing up believing that it was more desirable to be the more attractive option.  However, as we grew older and wiser, I believe that our choices became more informed.  There’s only so many options in that movie, so one of us would still end up being Ms. Scarlet, but instead we were fighting over Mrs. White because we had begun to recognize the comedic genius of Madeline Khan (“it-it- the f – it -flam – flames. Flames, on the side of my face, breathing-breathl- heaving breaths. Heaving breaths… Heathing…”  Best.  Ever).

As I have matured, it dawns on me that this is one of those perfect movies to grow up watching.  The slapstick will be funny to all ages.  But as you get older, you begin to understand more of the zippy one-liners and “adult” humor that went over your head as a child.  It also occurs to me that when watching movies you loved as a child, it is difficult to re-visit them without being biased and tell your grown-up colleagues that they are truly as great as you remember them.  Now, I fully believe that Clue is as great as 9-year old me thought that it was because I still get the same enjoyment out of it that I did back then.  The performances here are genius and I pick up on new jokes that I had either never previously heard or “gotten”.

I just love this movie and it warms the cockles of my heart every time I watch it.

Did/do you love Clue, too?  If you do, did you know that Psych is doing a reunion episode for it’s 100th episode?  Yeah.  You could say I’m excited about that.  If you have some free time, check out the video I found of someone’s top 25 moments of the movie. (SPOILERS!)

-Ellen

In with the Old: She’s All That

I believe that there comes a movie in every young girl’s life where she finds that one film that takes her into adolescence.  That one movie that makes her feel like a cool teenager rather than a little kid.  For me, that movie was 1999’s She’s All That.

Conditions were perfect: I was 12 going on 13 when I first saw this movie.  Old enough to get some of this movie’s humor (pubes on pizza?!  The laughs never stop), but young enough to overlook some of it’s imperfections.  Imagine my disappointment when I found that there are not groups of people who break out into choreographed numbers at the school dances!  It is for this and no other reason that I never went to one.  Also, I had to face the hard truth that Usher’s voice would NOT be coming over my school’s PA system giving the morning announcements.   Thanks, but NO thanks, high school.

And luckily, as a spectacled youth with a mother who was sure to tell me that girls in glasses can still be cute, I was wise enough to question why sticking glasses on Rachel Leigh Cook automatically made her a social leper.  Maybe it was the overalls?

Despite all these faults that I was a little less aware of then, I still love/loved this movie.  My love for this movie mainly stems from having watched it at least 50 times between the years 1999 and 2001.  While you may be thinking that I am exaggerating with that exorbitant number, I can assure you that I am not.  To this day, I can still quote along with the whole movie.  You may be wondering why I nearly wore out my VHS copy of this movie, but really, do you even have to ask?

My 12-year old heart beat so hard for my beloved FPJ.  In fact, while trying to find a picture of Zach Syler for this post,  I realized that the search results were all pictures I had printed and slathered on my walls.  Or they were the featured pictures in the  paperback Freddie Prinze Jr. biography that I begged my mom to buy me at my school’s book sale.

While FPJ and I have grown apart (mainly because he is giving me little to work with these days), any time I watch She’s All That  I still revert to that prepubescent 12 year old swooning in front of the TV.  Who doesn’t want to go back to that every once in a while?

-Ellen

In with the Old: Empire Records

Empire Records has ruined all of my summer part-time job experiences. You think I’m kidding? Imagine my horror, when I showed up for my first day of work at Don Pedro’s Family Mexican Restaurant, to find that my boss was NOT a curmudgeonly but lovable ex-drummer, no one had ever shaved their head in the bathroom sink, and I had no veto rights in regards to music choices. My co-workers actually did turn out to be a rag-tag group of misfits, but not in a cool way. It’s ok, though. The fact that my summer joe-jobs never play out like a cult comedy only furthers my appreciation for this awesome, awesome movie.

It’s hard to pin down what exactly makes this film so friggin’ spectacular. It might be snappy dialogue, the awesome cast, or maybe the killer soundtrack, packed with all the 90’s alt-rock a lady could wish for. Or, more likely, it’s because this movie is so weirdly polarizing; either you love it or you hate it, and simply by loving it I get to be part of an exclusive club. (If that sounds snobbish, remember that this is a club that worships a movie about a bunch of losers working in a record store). And someday, I may have to move past this juvenile obsession I have with Empire Records. I may have to learn to appreciate Wes Anderson movies and try really hard to get into The Killing. But for now, I’m gonna stick with what I know.
Damn the man, save the Empire!

-Whitney