When Dinosaurs Ruled the 90’s

The 1990’s were an odd time where the most unlikely of trends would just consume the pop culture climate. Sometimes the trends lasted for fifteen minutes (Swing music! Grunge Rock!), and other times they lasted the whole decade. For many that don’t remember, the concept and science of Dinosaurs experienced a wide resurgence in the 1990’s, and getting in to dinosaurs was chic for quite a time. I fondly remember just tearing through massive books of dinosaurs that my cousin lent me, and spent so much time learning about various species and classes of dinosaurs.

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Thank You, Paul Reubens (1952-2023)

I was born in 1983, so I was at that point in time where the eighties was just on its way out as I was growing in to adolescence, but I very fondly remember a lot of the decade. I remember how much I loved the comedy of the decade mainly because I grew up around a dad who exclusively lived on a diet of comedy. So I watched Weird Al, and Ernest, and Elvira, and Alf, and Robin Williams. Most of all I watched Pee Wee Herman. Pee Wee Herman played a huge role in my life as a comedy fan and a fan of just entertainment in general. There was a period in the eighties and early nineties where Herman was just an massive icon. I didn’t really catch his stand up material.

But I was there for “Pee Wee’s Playhouse.”

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The Disaster Art of “The Room” And Making Movies

Returning to theaters with a special “celebration” screening for one night only on June 27th; tickets for the event can be purchased at Fathom Events in participating theater box offices. Some locations are subject to change.

Back in 1999, my uncle was clearing out his old stuff and decided to give me his old camcorder. At that time, I was probably seventeen. I decided I wanted to become a filmmaker. He’d had this old camcorder from the early 1980’s that had no sound, was color (I use the word loosely), and could only really attach to the VCR if you wanted to film with it. In either case, I’d decided to play with it for a while and then staged a short film with my brother and sister. It was the three of us in the middle of the night filming a horror movie in my small bed room. We ended up with about a four minute video. The four minute “short film” had taken us about eight hours to film, overall.

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Dogs Are Man’s Only Best Friend in the “John Wick” Universe

“You Hit My Puppy.” – Mr. Nobody

When we first meet John Wick, he’s already hanging on a thread. He’d all but expended his humanity on his past life. He’d spent his entire life as a ruthless hit man known as the dehumanizing name of “El Baba Yaga.” All sense of what makes him a person had been lost thanks to the mythologizing of his time as a career hit man. When he meets his wife Helen, he sadly loses her to terminal cancer, which ultimately causes him to reflect on not only giving up but relinquishing whatever trace of heart and soul that he had left. When Helen leaves him a young Beagle named Daisy, much to his surprise and chagrin, she’s not only giving him a purpose but a part of his humanity. If she can’t be there to take care of him and love John, at least he can have Daisy to care for and become friends with.

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“Robot Monster” and Seventy Years of the Ro-Man

Will be screening on June 24th at 3p.m. at Manhattan’s Dolby Screening Room, 1360 Avenue of the Americas. Tickets can be purchased online.

“The boy is impertinent!”

Ro-man is not quite an ape. And he’s not quite a man. He’s kind of a sentient alien who is smart enough to destroy civilization but not smart enough to be able to breathe Earth’s atmosphere sans his diving helmet. He’s a complicated Ro-man and no one understands him but his woman. Phil Tucker’s “Robot Monster” is a post apocalyptic survival film that conveniently evades all glimpses at the actual invasion and aforementioned apocalypse. The evil Ro-Man have invaded and destroyed Earth because—well—humans are bad. And to add insult to injury they monitor the remaining survivors in hopes of capturing and or destroying them.

They can never seem to make up their minds on that mission statement.

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The Aimless Joy of Youth: “Dazed and Confused” at 30

One thing Richard Linklater can never be accused of is someone that deals in concepts of fate and destiny. He’s also pretty much an atheist when it comes to storytelling. His characters aren’t fulfilling destiny or living up to a higher purpose (e.g. “Boyhood”). They’re merely characters drifting and crashing in to one another, creating random occurrences that may or may not work out the way they want to. Jessie and Celine in “Before Sunrise” are just drifting along the world until they meet one day. The dreamer in “Waking Life” is just drifting through his sub-conscious meeting others. Jake is ostensibly drifting around in “Everybody Wants Some!!” Hell, even Dewey in “School of Rock” doesn’t truly fulfill any grand destiny, except merely learning to grow.

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“Iron Man” Fifteen Years Later: The Tech Superhero We Didn’t Know we Wanted

Recently I was on Tik Tok, and I came across a comic book content creator who was under fire from commenters who took issue with his claim that before he became a big screen hero, Iron Man was not at all popular. It’s quite the comical turn of events because if you were a fan of comic books in the late eighties throughout the nineties, Iron Man was not popular. Out of all the superheroes running during that time, Iron Man was at best a third tier superhero.

While The Punisher, Spider-Man, and X-Men were selling huge for Marvel Comics, Iron Man was low on the totem pole in terms of status and popularity. His series was constantly cancelled, rebooted, and restarted, while his alternate War Machine became the more celebrated of the pair. While he was respected as one of the Avengers’ founders, he just wasn’t a popular or even appealing character.

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Superman is Still the Hero We Need

Superman has always been deemed as something of an antiquated superhero by many, but I’ve always turned to him in my need for a good superhero fix. Ever since I was seven, I devoured everything and anything that had Superman featured. That also included Richard Donner’s “Superman: The Movie.” It not only featured Superman, but it featured one of the Supermen that I grew up with. Along with the Max Fleischer Superman, and George Reeves Superman, Christopher Reeve was the big dog in the superhero universe. Reeve’s boyish charm and staunch determination made Superman a hero you could look up to and depend on.

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