Posts Tagged ‘Jason Lively’

Monday Morning

Tuesday, December 6th, 2022

MONDAY MORNING (1990) is the only movie written and directed by the producer Don Murphy (NATURAL BORN KILLERS, DOUBLE DRAGON, BULLY, THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN, TRANSFORMERS). I’ve been kind of fascinated by him since his furious all caps attacks on people for saying the wrong things about his productions on AOL message boards back in the Hyborian Age, so when I saw that a movie he actually directed came out on disc from MVD Rewind I got curious.

It was actually his USC thesis film, but he managed to sell it for release on VHS under the title CLASS OF FEAR. They promoted it like an exploitation movie, but it’s more of a corny drama, almost an After School Special. It does not show many signs of directorial vision that I could pick up on, but maybe Murphy deserves credit for recognizing that and going into producing instead. I’m not gonna hold it against him. (read the rest of this shit…)

National Lampoon’s European Vacation

Tuesday, July 28th, 2020

July 26, 1985

NATIONAL LAMPOON’S EUROPEAN VACATION is one of the Summer of 1985 movies I actually did see in the theater. I was young and I’m sure I thought it was funny enough at the time, but I doubt I ever rewatched it before now, and I did not feel any nostalgia for it.

While the first VACATION was directed by Harold Ramis, this one was Amy Heckerling, following FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH and JOHNNY DANGEROUSLY. She occasionally brings what probly were considered “MTV style” flourishes to montages and stuff, but is fairly anonymous. John Hughes returned as writer/producer, but for the first one he’d been able to adapt a short story he’d already written for National Lampoon. This one had no such basis, so he had to bring in a serious, heavy hitter, not fuckin around superstar pinch hitter of a co-writer to carry his dead weight and turn this into something truly special. But that person must’ve been busy so he got Robert Klane, writer/director of the disco movie THANK GOD IT’S FRIDAY (1978). Klane had previously been a novelist, but in 1970 adapted his book WHERE’S POPPA? into a movie, which led to writing some episodes of M*A*S*H, an unproduced GREASE sequel called GREASIER, the Summer of 1985 movie that I skipped THE MAN WITH ONE RED SHOE, etc. (read the rest of this shit…)