Making Sense of the Senseless Entry: Footloose (1984)

Author’s Note: Yes, there is a remake; no, I never saw it. 

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Recently I visited my Mom’s hometown in South Georgia to see a sick relative. Although the relative in question is home from hospice (not in a ‘You don’t need hospice!’ kind of way, more a ‘There’s nothing to do but wait for the inevitable’ kind of way)  it was overall a stressful and trying trip, especially this close to the holidays.

While driving down the little dirt roads and looking out over gray fields full of rusting farm equipment, dilapidated trailers covered with weeds, and yards full of chickens and goats, I recognized that I had always associated the area with the rust belt, even though it’s quite a ways south of that region. Any ’80s movie depicting economic decay, agricultural stagnation, and declining small-town industry always made me think of that area, and I’m sure residents would agree that the imagery is accurate, if not agree with the sentiment. In fact, part of the reason I never saw Footloose is because I already knew the story; hell, being a city kid who’d go to the country to visit a couple times a year, I lived it. I also picked it up from pop culture references and a joke in the Elvira movie, and there’s really only so many times the ‘big city vs small town’ pastiche can be explored. But I knew it to be a much-loved classic, and when I got home from a depressing visit with relatives, I thought I’d watch something kind of fun and upbeat.

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Noooot quite on the beat… But still having a great time! 

I have to say, I was very impressed! The story and characters had surprising depth, and I really appreciated the complexity of the conflict.

Continue reading “Making Sense of the Senseless Entry: Footloose (1984)”

Y’all Ready for This?

Guess what next week is….

That’s right! It’s the beginning of HORROR MOVIE MONTH here at Late to the Theater! And we’ve got a whole big RANGE coming up! I’ve been planning and scribbling ideas and having all kinds of fun figuring out the themes for the weeks!

  • Week 1 – The Suburbs: Hell is Other People – Ride along on your BMX while we deconstruct some of that most 80s of juxtapositions, horror in the suburbs, with well-known films The Burbs, Poltergeist, and the less well-known Lady in White. If you enjoyed Stranger Things, you will find some familiar ground here. I’ve covered The Burbs before, but that was then and this is now and I’ve got lots of new corny jokes.
  • Week 2 – A Walk Among the Fandoms: My Trip to Spooky Empire – In which I recount my experience at Spooky Empire, Orlando’s horror convention. And I’ll talk about my John Clare costume! Excitement!
  • Week 3 – Werewolf Week! – Fur, fangs, talons, subtext about sexuality; the gang’s all here with Dog Soldiers,  The Howling, and one that’s very near and dear to my heart, The Company of Wolves. Get your beast-fix and bring a doggie bag (hurr) for week 3.
  • Week 4 – TBA. I like to end with a bang, so the last week should be something really cool, and I haven’t figured out what that is, yet. So who knows? Maybe it’s all Stephen King movies, maybe it’s all old-school, or maybe it’s all new-school, maybe it’s all cannibals. Time will tell!

So stay tuned! Our first entry will be hitting the intarwebz next Monday morning at 8.

Be there or be square!

 

Pee-Wee Hermania: Pee-Wee’s Big Holiday

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AAGHH HA HA!!! 

To celebrate the new Netflix-produced Pee-Wee Herman movie, I invited a bunch of friends over for a breakfast-food themed movie night.

Read on for friends, food, film and fun! And wine. There was also wine.

Continue reading “Pee-Wee Hermania: Pee-Wee’s Big Holiday”

Thursday Check-In

I saw him live when I was 5 years old, and because my dad was too cheap to pay for parking he made us walk through 2 miles of Scarface-era Miami to the arena.

Rather than gurn about all the things that aren’t going my way, as I usually do, here is Michael Jackson’s Beat It.

I have loved Michael since I was 4 years old. I had an MJ doll that was the Ken to my Barbies, complete with red Thriller outfit and single sparkly glove. I saw him live when I was 5 years old, and because my dad was too cheap to pay for parking he made us walk to the arena through 2 miles of Scarface-era Miami. Doing The Wave for an hour confused and exhausted me and I fell asleep halfway through the show…

…BUT. 

MJ’s music has long been a powerful antidepressant for me. As far as I’m concerned Beat It is like a 200-cc shot of ‘NO LONGER TAKING BULLSHIT FROM ANYONE.’

This week has been a downer, but I am resolved to bounce back. I am working on some entries for next week, and doing a lot of reading and commenting in the meantime. I’m resting up, basically, after a marathon of both personal and professional productivity.

I wish you luck today, in all you do!

Go forth and BE AWESOME!  I know you can! 

 

Oh, For Heaven’s SAKE…

Some folks in the comments on that post have suggested gender-swapping Jareth and starring someone like Tilda Swinton (SWINTON) or Annie Lennox.

 

Look, I know a lot of people on the East Coast are having Real World Problems right now due to Winter Storm Jonas. That really sucks, and having myself lived through some hurricanes that caused massive wreckage, my heart goes out to them on this Monday morning. I hope you all make it to work if you can, and if you can’t, may your power be unflagging and your internet connection without lag. 

That said, I have to talk about this:

Sorry Everyone, a Labyrinth Reboot is In the Works

I’m not going on a tear about how this is destroying my childhood or whatever. Things change, the center cannot hold, and any thing that generates buzz is considered up for grabs for a remake. I will always have the original. And hey, Guardians of the Galaxy turned out to be a hell of a great surprise, AND they have an actual Henson involved! We shall see.

Continue reading “Oh, For Heaven’s SAKE…”