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About EricJ

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  • Birthday 06/14/1964

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  1. EricJ

    universal horror monster mess

    Not to mention that the pre-Code outcry over Edgar Ullmer's "The Black Cat" pretty much finished off Universal Horror's popularity with the public, and made the supernatural a box-office-taboo word at the studio. Most of Universal's, quote, "horror" output without the Laemmles after that was generic "Old Dark House" thrillers--with comic elements added, for Scooby-Doo value--with Bela Lugosi reduced to playing just generic sinister butlers and gardeners. The "Vs." monster-mashups were only after Universal was reduced to showing the Classic monsters to matinee revivals, and discovering that they had B-movie value with kid and teen audiences. At which point it became a B-movie industry at the studio, with budgets and production value to match, until the Jack Arnold "Universal International" days of the Creature From the Black Lagoon. Although, of course, we've already had the thread that explained why FMtWM feels so disjointed and that there's a lot more Wolf Man than Frankenstein in the finished product--After the studio cut out the major subplot continuing Lugosi's talking Ygor-stein Creature from the end of "Ghost of Frankenstein". It's a nice idea for a monster-mashup, and good points for intent, but like certain Warner DC Comics mashups, you wish for a do-over that had all its ideas worked out before they went in.
  2. Streisand was funny as a Brooklyn Jewish Girl in the 60's and 70's of "Funny Girl" and "Hello Dolly", because she had enough humor to play herself as realistically New Yawk and comically over the top for late-60's/early-70's comedy and Broadway. By the time she did "Funny Lady" in '74--which was also about the now career-established Fanny Brice turning into a ruthless self-promoting businesswoman with an entertainment empire--art was starting to imitate life, and we were on our way to the rampaging Barbara-Zilla of the South Park episode. (The one we got in "Yentl", which would have been a better movie musical if anyone else had been allowed to sing in it.) And while I don't absolutely loathe Katherine Hepburn in BAB as much as other posters--or at least to the murderous degree I hate the "wacky" family in "My Man Godfrey"--her complete lack of any motivation for WHY she's such a looney will test your ultimate patience for 30's Screwball Comedy.
  3. EricJ

    I Just Watched...

    You do know that the song has absolutely nothing to do with sex or the Bangkok trade, don't you? 😛 (Hint: It's sung by an int'l chess champion in the Abba musical, and the queens he uses would not excite you.) When?--I wasn't aware she was sick. Although I remember a BBC series analyzing Shakespeare, that paralleled the weak "God shall defend his king!" inaction of Shakespeare's Richard II with Margaret Thatcher's stay-the-course belief that loyal England would rally to her side during the Vote of No Confidence that drove her out. (How Meryl Streep handled it, I haven't got around to renting.)
  4. I'll admit I tried to watch it, along with "Monsignor", as part of a series on "lost" John Williams scores. (Er, the Oscar-nominated song was good, but...) But after the sustained insufferable cutesiness, which was excessive even by early-80's rom-com standards, I gave up after ten or fifteen minutes. English issues aside, Pavarotti LOOKS like he should be a better actor than he is. From what I saw, if they wanted to show a "cute" gag showing Pavarotti's hinder, at that point, it wouldn't surprise me. 😓
  5. EricJ

    Changes Coming for the Academy Awards

    The goal of most awards is to give awards to EACH OTHER--Simply because nobody else outside the industry knows what work merits one as intimately as those inside the industry. They don't televise your office's Employee of the Month winner, but if you work there, it's nice to have. The Golden Globes, for example, was started as a way for press columnists to show their loyalty to the studio-system publicists, which is why nobody cared about them until we couldn't think of our own nominations anymore and got onto our big fantasy-baseball "Oscar buzz" kick. The Tonys could be considered "marketing", since the whole point of televising the musical excerpts is to give people outside of NY a peek at what they could come to town to get, but once Neil Patrick Harris opens his audience-schmoozing mouth, it's back to the private industry get-together again.
  6. EricJ

    Puppet Films

    (I'm old enough to remember the NBC Conan O'Brien episode where they premiered Triumph, where he was meant in context of an actual joke. That was a long time ago, and I'm pretty sure nobody else today does, least of all R. Smigel.) Michael York and Pia Zadora, which I always found a bit odd. Brian Froud on the disk commentary mentioned showing Dark Crystal to kids, and often heard the reaction of "Cool, what is this, it's not CGI?" I'm assuming the stop-motion of Ray Harryhausen, Lotte Reiniger and, ahem, Henry Selick's Halloween movie are disqualified, as we're talking about puppets with real-time movement. (Also, I remember being trapped in a theater watching Lotte's shadow-puppet animation "Baron Munchhausen" movie with an audience when the winter heat went out, and...I'd rather not relive those memories, thank you.) Oh, well--Moving right along:
  7. EricJ

    Gregory Peck's grandson is the new Spock

    ...What would Nurse Chapel think?? 😮
  8. If I'm ever in court, can I get out of it by charming their better natures with a big "Aww..." feel-good speech directly to the jury about why it was the right thing to do, like at the end of all those 80's comedies? (...Can't I even bring in some sick kids, like at the end of "Patch Adams"?)
  9. EricJ

    the most silly little movie myths

    I'm not sure whether I want to dig up the YouTube conspiracy theorist who complained that now that we have Oz on pristine 4K restored Blu-ray, we can now SEE, in crystal clarity, that the "hanging" Munchkin was actually the same African crowned crane who was strutting about and flapping its wings near the house during the Tin Man's song: It would be disappointing to say that technology had permanently robbed us of a favorite old urban-chestnut, so, never say die, the theorist was trying to float the theory that Warner had altered the scene with CGI for the Blu-ray, to try and bury the suicide evidence once and for all! (And what were his compelling arguments?: A) "They can do that now!", and B ) "The old shot was totally different!--It always looked like one on my fuzzy old VHS, years before!")
  10. EricJ

    Gregory Peck's grandson is the new Spock

    Pretty much even the most basic Trek fan knows that Spock once had the very violent hots for T'Pring, back when he was feeling his Vulcan-ritual oats. Can't say I blame him, but she just as asexually turned out to be a politically manipulative schemer. As he told the better Vulcan man who won, "You may often find that having a thing is not as pleasing after all as wanting it...It is not logical, but true."
  11. EricJ

    Changes Coming for the Academy Awards

    The "Triplets of Belleville" theme was also a lively defense of the Best Song number: Oh, and I DID already mention Cirque du Soleil's '02 salute to great moments in Best Visual Effects, right?
  12. EricJ

    I Just Watched...

    I'm going to have to agree with Tiki on this one: Anyone who abuses the Text Color and Capitals feature usually ends up attacked by a Wookelar.
  13. EricJ

    Changes Coming for the Academy Awards

    As was Pilobolus on Ellen DeGeneres's '07 hosting: (Which I always put second to Cirque du Soleil's '02 appearance as evidence-for-the-defense toward Why to Leave the Entertainment Numbers IN.)
  14. EricJ

    the unsung joe cantwell

    I'm curious about looking up some of the old "70's Mainstream TV Tries to Do Watergate" miniseries based on all the hit post-jail autobio bestsellers (yes, I'm THAT desperate for good old-fashioned Old Skool 70's TV that Hulu won't show), back when few people literally understood what the heck had been going on, and it took "All the President's Men" to FAQ-101 it to them--No one even remembers the TV miniseries of The Final Days, except for 70's SNL doing a hilarious Dan Aykroyd parody of the book's excesses. Sadly, no "Will" on YouTube, except for isolated clips of Robert Conrad, although you can find "Blind Ambition" in some back corners if you look. As for Nip, Lawrence, you're catching on: It's not that he posts recommendations for anyone else, he just.........posts. And Fire Maidens is much better downed with the obvious chaser:
  15. EricJ

    If They Had Lived...

    I don't know, seeing Dean's sudden bursts of Method Acting in his films--Filmstruck's Twitter page has had fun comparing Dean's "You're tearing me apaaart!" in Rebel to with Tommy Wiseau's from "The Room"--puts one in mind of what happened to Marlon Brando ten or twenty years after "Stell-laaa!" Except that Dean didn't quite seem to be as ambitious to play against his own real-life brooding-delinquent-who-stumbled-into-acting personality, and probably wouldn't have played Shakespeare's Marc Anthony quite as well. Monroe was aware that she didn't like glamorous concocted studio images--always sardonically joking about "her"--and she was curious to break out into more challenging projects to play against her image but didn't quite know how to do it, especially if her Acting Institute coach wasn't around. Even when all her other smitten directors were starting to give her less glamorous and more sympathetic parts like "The Misfits", just to see her natural offscreen personality emerge in casual clothes. Watching Fox's restored "Something's Got to Give", she's still not quite on the beam for playing a fast-paced dialogue comedy, compared to trouper Doris Day in "Move Over, Darling"--Doris could move on to 60's comedy and TV sitcom, but Marilyn in "Let's Make Love" looks like she feels she still "has" to do breathy-earnestness and suggestive musical numbers.

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