Emilio Estevez

The Outsiders

Year: 1983
Directed By: Francis Ford Coppola
Written By: Kathleen Rowell (screenplay) S.E. Hinton (novel)

RYAN’S REVIEW

I found myself surprisingly sucked into this movie when I sat down to review it. It was the first time I had seen it in probably as many as ten years but it was one I saw frequently in my youth. This movie reminds me of my dad because he was a big fan of it and talked of it often when I was young. It has a very large cast of popular young actors from the time. Some of which would go on to be big stars today while others rose to brief stardom before fading away. The movie tells an interesting story about class differences and rivalries during the 1950s.

Francis Ford Coppola made one of the greatest movies of all time and it is one of my personal favorites. The Godfather, for all practical purposes was a perfect film and a masterpiece crafted by Coppola. Aside from that I like very little of what he has done in his career. I hate the two sequels he made for The Godfather, and I have always thought Apocalypse Now to be overrated. I know that I would lose a debate when it comes to my opinion about Apocalypse Now but I will fight till I’m blue in the face over the The Godfather II and III. While I get why Apocalypse Now is a big deal I just find Coppola’s Vietnam hitman mission film to be too long, too dark, and too confusing. Given that opinion I am inclined to consider this my second favorite film by the guy who is a big deal for the one awesome thing he did forty years ago. Truthfully I think the direction of this movie actually brings it down a peg as I think the story and the cast are what make it appealing. For example the typography in the intro is awful; the ending too fails to do anything but drag out the closing to the story.

It’s the story of this deep seeded cultural barrier between the rich kid Socialites and the poor impoverished Greasers that drives the film. The greasers with their leather jackets, switchblades, and greasy hair are the rough guys that bring down society by always causing trouble. The Socs aren’t much better however. These rich kids dress better but they like to get loaded on booze and cruise the bad part of town looking for trouble. When the two sides come together bad things are bound to happen.

The cast of this movie is its greatest strength because it is an interesting thing to look back on. The group of young actors that were cast in the movie would all have their moment in the sun, although some went quicker than they probably would have liked. Ralph Macchio never really did anything after the 80s, and C. Thomas Howell did little after a promising start to his career with films like this one and Red DawnEmilio Estevez would hang on to stardom through part of the nineties but is practically forgotten these days as his famous family members continue to prosper. Patrick Swayze, may he rest in peace, is such a silly actor. I have always thought he was just awful in just about everything and this movie is no different. This was actually one of his first big roles. He looks the part true enough but regardless how good the man might look on screen he has just never been worth a damn as an actor.

This was also one of the first roles for Tom Cruise who would go on to be one of the biggest actors in the business. Even today, over 30 years later, he has yet to slow down as an actor, or even age for that matter. Rob Lowe also has to be considered a big time star today. I do not know why though. I detest him as an actor because I think he ruins EVERYTHING. I used to be a big fan of Parks & Recreation until he showed up and his stupid character just ruined the whole thing for me. As far as I’m concerned, the only time he didn’t suck was in Austin Powers The Spy Who Shagged Me. Diane Lane also had one of her earliest roles in this movie. She would go on to just get hotter and hotter for the next twenty years. It hurts my heart a bit to see her in roles as the older woman now, such as we saw in Man of Steel. However, she is still hotter than any woman her age has any business being and hats off to her.

My favorite role in this movie goes to a guy that can only be described as hit or miss throughout his entire career. I have always liked Matt Dillon in this movie the best. He is the toughest of the tough kids and in his youth you would have thought he would go on to be bigger than all his peers. Sadly that wasn’t the case but he still has plenty to be proud of with what he has accomplished in his career.

I’ve stumbled through this review a bit and still said little of any significance. I like this movie and think it is interesting to watch in hindsight. I think among all the crap its unseemly famous director has made it stands out among the rest. I enjoyed it more than I thought I would and I think this movie is easily worth your time to see. I think though, if you want more insight to the film you are bound to find a better review from someone more invested in this movie.

NEXT MOVIE: Passenger 57 (1992)

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Judgment Night

Year:1993
Directed By:Stephen Hopkins
Written By: Lewis Colick and Jere Cunningham

RYAN’S REVIEW

A couple of years ago Amber and I took a trip to Chicago. We drove there and along the way our borrowed GPS device lead us into a really seedy neighborhood in the slums outside the city. Fortunately for us it was early, because I would not want to see the people who wandered out of those houses after noon. We had just bought our first brand new car as a couple and happened to be driving it when we found ourselves in this place. I remember how bizarre it felt and I remember thinking about this movie. It was after that trip and once we returned that I sought out the movie and added it to the collection.

This movie is one I remember watching in my teens and really enjoying. It’s an interesting and riveting story about people who find themselves in a different part of the world and in a danger they have never know before. Denis Leary gives the performance of a lifetime, possibly playing one of the coolest bad guys ever. He is ruthless, he is intimidating with his wit, and he does not take any shit from anybody. My favorite part of the film is when he offers the projects gangster money and the gangster tries to tell him if he wants his money he will take it. Leary responds “no you can’t take my money,” with a look and tone that cuts like a knife. The gangster does not challenge the statement, and I don’t know that anybody in the world would have. Of course Leary is enhanced as a gangster by having a really badass number two man played by Peter Greene. Greene has not done enough over the years. That guy has a look that was made to be on camera. His face is so villainous-looking and he has a voice that invokes intimidation. He should have been in more movies and those movies would have been better because of his presence. He is old now, and based on his short role in the pilot episode of Justified a few years ago I can attest his best years are behind him. He looks like shit now and that is unfortunate, but the guy had his moments. It’s a shame his best role came in The Mask, but he had a few parts that he did really well in. This one and The Usual Suspects were very good for him, and although it was a stupid movie, he was great in Under Siege 2 as well, but like I said the guy was born to play the bad guy.

As for the good guys/victims in this movie I think they were a great ensemble but some were better than others. Cuba Gooding Jr, Jeremy Piven, and Stephen Dorff were all three great but I felt this was one of the worst roles Emilio Estevez ever played. I find myself so often wondering what happened to Emilio and how he fails to find work while his psychotic brother stumbles into success at every turn. This movie may have given me an answer though. Emilio just isn’t a very good actor and this role is specifically not one he can pull off. Emilio isn’t a convincing tough guy. He doesn’t really play a tough guy in this movie but more so a settled down dad who used to be tough. He doesn’t pull it off well; he should have stuck to playing the lovable Disney hockey coach. I’ve always been a fan of Jeremy Piven but I like him better when he isn’t playing the kind of weasel character we see him play in this movie. He is still good despite that. Cuba has a great crazy look that he has exercised in many of his films and uses it frequently as this movie progresses. Stephen Dorff rounds up this group and plays his part well too.

I think this is a cool movie and would encourage anybody to check it out. If for no other reason you should see this movie to witness Denis Leary in one of his finest roles. I think he has been good in many movies but this one gives him the spotlight and he runs away with it. This movie doesn’t show up on TV very often but if you have the opportunity to see I think it is more than worth your time.

AMBER’S REVIEW

I was actually really surprised how much I paid attention to this movie. I got sucked in and found myself anticipating the end. I usually find more than not that movies like this are cheesy. I shouldn’t think like that, I could be missing out on other good movies. This one is worth watching. It is surprisingly good.

judgmenetnight

The poster surprised me too. I usually don’t really like too many posters that try to fit too many people on it, as I may have mentioned before. Cough. Having said that, I think it works here. The bad guy is all dimmed out and is hiding behind all of the other objects in the poster. The typography is tight and simple. Overall I think it’s a good poster for this movie.

NEXT MOVIE: Julia & Julia(2009)

The Breakfast Club

Year: 1985
Directed By: John Hughes
Written By: John Hughes

RYAN’S REVIEW

This movie is out of order in the blog because Amber just bought it the other day.  I was really pleased and surprised when she brought it home because I think it is a terrific movie.  I haven’t seen this movie all the way through since I was in high school, so I have really enjoyed revisiting it. I have never really connected with this film on a personal level and I think that’s why we haven’t owned it before.  It is an undeniable classic though and I always love adding classics into the collection.

Like when we have reviewed certain other classics, like Caddyshack or Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, I don’t think you need me to vouch for this film. Most people know how great this movie is because it’s the kind of movie nearly everyone has seen. If somehow you haven’t seen this movie there is really just one thing I think you should know before going in…it has nothing to do with breakfast.  I think the title The Breakfast Club is awesome but it is an unusual name for the movie. Early in the film the characters discuss the clubs that they are part of. Brian mentions that he is a member of a few math clubs and it is he that coins the title later in the film. Bender also asks the question “what club do you belong to?” Maybe after the time they have spent together and the things they shared with one another they belong to each other in some way, they are their own club at the end of the day.

John Hughes made many great and iconic movies but this one is near the top of his all-time greats.  We will have several opportunities to discuss John Hughes though, we own many of his films. His regulars Molly Ringwald and Anthony Michael Hall were both at their best in this movie.  Emilio Estevez is good as the straight-laced jock.  Judd Nelson is incredible as John Bender, it is his role that makes the movie so great.  They are all great and bring something good to the film but I think Nelson set himself apart with his role. Paul Gleason always has been the guy he played in this movie when I see him, so I have never been a big fan.

This movie was the main reference point for the pilot episode of my current favorite tv show.  The first episode of NBC’S Community made several references to this film and it was actually dedicated to the memory of John Hughes, who had died recently.  It was a great tribute to a man who left a big mark on the industry, he was legendary and Community has continued to reference his films throughout the series.  Community is one of the most creative and intelligent shows I have ever seen and it is actually in danger of being cancelled now.  This is a show that thinks outside of the box, it’s clever and special, but it will be a casualty due to lack of ratings unless we all support the show. I implore anyone who reads this to watch Community when it returns to the NBC line-up. Watch the earlier seasons of the show online or on DVD and get ready for new episodes.  This is one of the best shows I have ever seen, and I really hope NBC decides to keep it going.

In closing I will simply say that it has been a lot of fun to see this movie again.  The soundtrack is worth mentioning before I wrap this up too, it’s a great contemplation of 80’s songs.  I love the Simple Minds song that serves as the theme for the movie, but doesn’t everybody? This movie is great and I think it is more than worth your time.

AMBER’S REVIEW

Ah. The Breakfast Club. We didn’t own this movie, that’s why it wasn’t reviewed with the “B’s.” When Ryan has a bad day at work or a bad in general, I know that I can go and get him a movie and the world is right again. Well, such a day happened last week and as I was going to the dreaded Wal-Mart anyway…I decided to peruse the movie section when I came across this movie for a completely reasonable price. I know some people who absolutely live and die by this movie. I really enjoy it. It is one of those movies that we can all relate to in one way or another. There is probably a good chance that we are all like one if the teenagers in the film. We probably had the same upbringing and feelings that these kids had.

If you haven’t seen this movie before, it is surprising. I honestly think everyone should see this movie. It is a classic and often a go-to for parodies. Definitely check this film out if you have never seen it before.