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Love in the time of big hair and neon

Three teen romances from the 1980s

Let’s return to a time when girl-power had more to do with romance than showing a male superhero that she can be his equal. Follow links to rent online. Valley Girl (1983) A savage on ...

Johnny Rocks

Three instructional sessions from the school of hard Knoxville

This week’s column celebrates the opening of Action Point (and my interview with Johnny Knoxville) with a trio of non-Jackass related titles. All three available for rent on Amazon. The Ringer (2005) After Jackass: The ...

Triple-X entertainment

Project X, The Return of Dr. X, and X: The Man with the X-Ray Eyes

John Badham’s Project X (1987) What is an inordinately intelligent baby chimp like Virgil to do when, in the great tradition of Walt Disney, we open with the removal of not one, but two of ...

Our cup bubbleth over

Three films about living in bubbles, literal and otherwise

Watching Bel Powley break free from her single-room existence in the coming-of-age werewolf drama Wildling brought to mind this trio of trapped teen tales. Randal Kleiser’s The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (1976) Your basic ...

Hot Babe Dynamite

This week’s trio of films qualify as so bad they’re educational

John Brahm’s Hot Rods to Hell Believe it or don’t, I’ve probably paid more visits to Hell than I have to Citizen Kane’s Xanadu. En route to the motel of their dreams, invalid (pronounced: “een-va-leed) ...

Harold Lloyd's organic flow

These early slapstick two-reelers should be required text for all wannabe comic filmmakers

This week we feature a trio of Harold Lloyd shorts from 1920, all of which are available on YouTube. Alfred J. Goulding and Hal Roach’s Haunted Spooks While Lloyd was posing for promotional stills midway ...

Half snuff film, half exploitative grindhouse

Films that never fail

Hated (USA, 1993, Skinny Nervous Guy Productions) is a great documentary the way that The Godfather Part II is a great movie or Moby Dick is a great book. They illustrate a story of a ...

As potent today as it was in 1987

A truth serum about capitalism

“How much is enough, Gordon?” Bud Fox asks his boss, Gordon Gekko. That quote encompasses exactly what Wall Street (USA, 1987, 20th Century Fox) is about. Gekko wants it all and even that’s not enough. ...

Ex-SEAL turned private investigator

Two of my favorite shows

I’m a sci-fi and anime fan, so people are often surprised that two of my favorite shows are Magnum P.I. and I Love Lucy. I think these shows are so original that they can’t be ...

Netflix picks

Seven siblings fight for the right to live, and two teenagers accomplish so much in so little time

The End of the F*ing World (UK, 2017, Netflix) is a British TV show with eight episodes. It’s based on the graphic novel by the same name. It’s witty and fresh, plus it comes with ...

A nod to maniacal cartoons

Terror that flaps in the night

Darkwing Duck gave viewers mild-mannered father Drake Mallard, who transforms into the superhero Darkwing Duck, the terror that flaps in the night. Infused with a Silver Age–era comics’ sensibility as well as a nod to ...

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