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REVIEW: Free Willy

April 9, 2014 Leave a comment
Free WillyDirected by: Simon Wincer
Produced by: Lauren Shuler Donner, Jennie Lew Tugend, Richard Donner, Arnon Milchan
Written by: Keith A. Walker, Corey Blechman
Edited by: O. Nicholas Brown
Cinematography by: Robbie Greenberg
Music by: Basil Poledouris; Michael Jackson (theme)
Starring: Jason James Richter, Lori Petty, Jayne Atkinson, August Schellenberg, Michael Madsen, Michael Ironside, Mykelti Williamson, Michael Bacall, Keiko
Year: 1993

 

Man, I remember a time when I could watch this movie and not think of all the horrors that went on at SeaWorld, don’t you? Thank you, Blackfish, for making the message behind Free Willy so devastatingly real now that I’m a grown man. I hate you.

All kidding aside, however, this was probably one of the first pieces of media with an activist message kids from my era ever watched outside of a “very special episode” of one of their favorite TV shows. (And that was probably the episode of Fresh Prince where Carlton bought the gun after Will was mugged.) Free Willy was the movie that dared us to care about the remarkable relationship between a troubled young boy named Jesse who just desperately needs someone to love him and set a good example for him and his unexpected friendship with a tenacious whale who was taken away from his own family and put on display for a world that doesn’t fully understand him. Read more…

April 2014 is ’90s Nostalgia Month!

April 1, 2014 1 comment

Alright, this was originally going to happen in March, but that didn’t end up panning out, so I decided to move it to April! First theme month of the year!

What does ’90s Nostalgia Month mean, exactly? It means that, for the month of April, I’ll be reviewing nothing but some of the most quintessential kids movies I watched from 1990 – 1999 — the time period in which I also started school until I was a 7th grader.

Now, not all of these movies will be universally loved by my fellow 90s kids. Heck, I might not even love them that much any more, myself, maybe not even then, but the movies I choose to review for this time period, I assure you, will be ones that I specifically remember being a pretty big part of my childhood. Examples? You want examples? Okay, well, I’ll give you a few hints of what I’ve got planned:

Space Jam - Michael Jordan

3 Ninjas - Rocky, Tum Tum, ColtSo… yeah, this should be pretty fun! In case you can’t wait, though, here’s a starter list for movies that I’ve already reviewed from the 90s — not all of them kids movies, but movies we watched as kids — that we all loved/hated but watched anyway as kids to whet your appetite!

Batman Returns

Batman Forever

Batman & Robin

Billy Madison

The Blair Witch Project

Braveheart

Clueless

Home Alone

Home Alone 2: Lost in New York

Independence Day

Jingle All the Way

Jurassic Park

The Lost World: Jurassic Park

Macross II: The Movie

The Muppet Christmas Carol

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Quest for Camelot

Scream

Titanic

Review: Groundhog Day

February 1, 2012 10 comments
Director: Harold Ramis
Produced by: Trevor Albert, Harold Ramis
Written by: Danny Rubin (also story), Harold Ramis
Starring: Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott
Music by: George Fenton
Year: 1993

 

Terrible romantic comedies are a dime a few dozen, and it’s a shame that some rather wonderful love stories get thrown out with the rest of the trash just because they happen to be humorous movies that also are about love. But there is one standout that I have to say transcends even some of the best romantic comedies out there – one particular movie that just so happens to take place on a particular February holiday that people across the nation pay way more attention to than it really, quite honestly, deserves… I am, of course, talking about Groundhog Day. Read more…

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