With the Werewolves Within trailer we learn that the movie will be a combination horror – mystery – comedy. While I’m not expecting great things, I’ll check it out hoping for a fun ride. Oh, and did you notice that Lilly (Milana Vayntrub) from the AT&T commercials is one of the stars?
Director: Josh Ruben
Starring: Milana Vayntrub, Cheyenne Jackson, Michaela Watkins
When a killer terrorizes the snowed-in residents of a small town, it falls to the new forest ranger to find out who – or what – lurks among them in this hilarious horror whodunnit.
I kid you not, we have the poster and trailer to, are you ready for this, Aquarium of the Dead!
Aquarium of the Dead is definitely a drive-in movie. I wonder if it will be one of those so-bad-it’s-fun movies or one of those so bad it’s awful movies.
Here’s the trailer for Jamie Foxx’s new Netflix series, Dad Stop Embarrassing Me. It doesn’t look great, but it doesn’t look bad. I’ll tune in to check it out. I’m glad to see David Alan Grier has a part. Truthfully, I’m surprised that Jamie Foxx is doing a series.
Family. Fatherhood. Facepalms. Dad Stop Embarrassing Me! starring Jamie Foxx premieres on April 14, only on Netflix
In 2007, Miller Lite ran a series of ads called Man Laws. The idea was that a group of highly respected (and manly) men met in secret to create the Laws by which men are to live. The ads were humorous and well done. Here is the introduction to the concept…
- Khabib Nurmagomedov: UFC MMA Champion, retired undefeated 29 – 0
- Kurt Angle: Gold Medal Winner: 1996 Olympics in Wrestling, Pro-Wrestler
- Idris Elba: Actor, Kickboxer
- Shaquille O’Neal: Basketball
- Marvelous Marvin Hagler: Boxing (I wrote this post up several days before Mr. Hagler died. Out of respect to him, I elected to not change this. – Craig)
- Danny Trejo: Actor
- Chuck Zito: Actor, Celebrity Bodyguard, Stuntman, Former President of the New York chapter of the Hells Angels
- Oleksii Novikov: 2020 World’s Strongest Man
- Eugene Goodman: Capitol Police Officer
- Sylvester Stallone: Actor and Leader of the Table
The Outside Story. I know, I know. The poster and the synopsis do not look like something I’d normally like. I agree with you, but watch the trailer. It won me over.
Starring Brian Tyree Henry, Sonequa Martin-Green, Sunita Mani, and Olivia Edward.While on a tight deadline, an introverted editor (Brian Tyree Henry) is locked out of his apartment. In order to find his way back inside, he’s forced to interact with…his neighbors.
Even if you don’t recognize the name, Mike Mignola, you know his creation, Hellboy. Perhaps the most popular comic character created in the last 40 years, Hellboy has been adapted into several movies, games, comic series and more. A documentary about Hellboy’s creator, Mike Mignola, is in the works. The first teaser trailer is here!
I don’t know if a first grader actually came up with that last one, but I can believe they did for the others. From the mouths of babes…
Here’s a cool opportunity to make someone who probably brought you at least a smile or two over the years very happy. Al Jaffee, award-winning cartoonist, inventor of Mad Magazine’s beloved fold-in page as well as Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions, turns 100 on March 13th. Sam Vivano, former MAD Art Director and friend of Al’s is putting together a surprise to help Al celebrate…
…(T)he legendary Al Jaffee will celebrate his 100th birthday on March 13. You are invited to send him greetings at the post office box shown in the graphic (above).
Please be sure to put your full name and address on the envelope. This will help me keep track of everything that comes in.
The box is active for the next six months, so don’t worry if you think your greeting won’t arrive by the 13th. I’m sure Al will be happy to continue celebrating his birthday even after it’s passed!
Although the project will run even after Al’s birthday, it would be cool to have Al’s party flooded with messages from fans around the world on his birthday. Please consider sending in a card.
Cloris Leachman, whose acting career spanned over 70 years, died yesterday of natural causes at the age of 94. It is hard to say the role that she was best known for since she had so many memorable and award-winning parts. Leachman was nominated for 22 Primetime Emmy Awards (earning her the record for the most nominations). She won 8 Primetime Emmy Awards (tying her with Julia Louis-Dreyfus for the most actress wins in Emmy history.) Leachman also won an Academy Award, a British Academy Film Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Daytime Emmy Award!
My first memory of Cloris Leachman is from her role as Phyllis Lindstrom on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. Her character was so popular that Leachman played her in two spin-off series; first on Rhoda and then in her own show simply titled Phyllis. Although my first memory of Cloris Leachman is from The Mary Tyler Moore Show, there is no doubt that I’d seen Leachman in many other television guest appearances. Her tv credits include dozens and dozens of appearances on popular shows… everything from Lassie to The Twilight Zone.
Cloris Leachman wasn’t just limited to television roles. Her appearances in Mel Brooks’ films were always funny, welcome additions. Her role as Frau Blücher in Young Frankenstein is a classic. Who can forget her first major movie role as Christina Bailey in Kiss Me Deadly? Leachman also appeared in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Last Picture Show (where she won the Oscar and BAFTA for Best Supporting Actress), High Anxiety and many other features.
Cloris Leachman has nearly 300 acting credits on her resume and she made everything she was in better by her presence. She will be missed.
Our thoughts and prayers go our to Cloris Leachman’s family, friends and fans.
I’m not a fan of the poster, but the trailer for A Ghost Waits has won me over. I want to see this film. It appears to be a mash-up of Beetlejuice (confirmed in the synopsis) and Ghost (speculation by me). Check it out!
YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
An ingeniously unique and unpredictable combo of horror, humor and heart, A Ghost Waits is a DIY labor of love years in the making from first-time writer/director Adam Stovall and producer/star MacLeod Andrews.
Tasked with renovating a neglected rental home, handyman Jack (MacLeod Andrews, They Look Like People, Doctor Sleep) quickly finds out why the tenants keep leaving in droves – this house is haunted. The ghost in question is Muriel (Natalie Walker), herself employed from beyond the veil to keep the home vacant. Against the odds, Jack and Muriel find they have a lot in common… pulse notwithstanding. Having found a kindred spirit in an otherwise lonely existence, they must fight for their newfound affection as pressure mounts for them each to fulfil their “cross-purposes”.
From its opening spectral assault to its achingly poignant conclusion – as well as a witty depiction of afterlife bureaucracy in the vein of Beetlejuice and A Matter of Life and Death – A Ghost Waits has shocked and surprised audiences around the world, and now makes its home video debut stacked with insightful bonus features that take you inside the process of creating this phantasmagorical monochrome marvel.
Now we have two posters and a trailer for, I kid you not, Sky Sharks. I would normally say this is doomed to flop, but then I remember there have been about a billion movies about Sharknadoes.
Directed by Marc Fehse
After an arctic research team discovers a long-lost Nazi warship, they inadvertently unleash the Third Reich’s unknown secret weapon: Sky Sharks.
Over the last year I’ve posted about my wife’s and my renewed interest and love for Columbo starring Peter Falk. Because the series is so popular it appears on several networks daily which makes recording episodes easy. My wife and I have been working our way through every episode. Joe Dator is doing the same thing.
Joe Dator is an accomplished cartoonist whose work can regularly be found in The New Yorker, often be found in Mad Magazine and Esquire and believe it or not, at his personal website. Joe was a winner of The National Cartoonists Society’s 2018 Silver Reuben Award.
I tell you all of this as a way of introduction into Joe Dator’s Rediscovering “Columbo” in 2020. The cartoon strip first appeared in The New Yorker last October, but can be seen in full at Joe’s website. I agree with everything Joe says about the joys of watching Columbo. The one thing I would add is that while Columbo’s first name is never spoken it does appear to eagle-eyed viewers when Columbo shares his ID in a few episodes.
End of the Year lists are fun and so I decided to compile a few of my own. I hope you enjoy them.
In 2020, I watched 453 movies. Most were streamed. I usually see a little over 200 movies per year so retirement and the pandemic helped increase my viewing. My favorite films released in 2020 included:
- Arkansas: An under-rated, quirky crime drama.
- Dracula: Technically a 3 part mini-series, but the first two episodes were near perfect and the third didn’t ruin the experience (but did fall off quite a bit).
- Extraction: A surprisingly well done action film that had heart.
- Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom: My favorite film of the year – the screenplay, acting and direction were top shelf. Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom deserves a boatload of Oscars.Who’d have thought that two of my favorite films would star the Hemsworth brothers?
In 2020, I read 34 books. I usually read about 20 – 24 per year so retirement and the pandemic also worked to increase my novel consumption. My favorites from this year included:
More Better Deals by Joe Lansdale: A crime noir that is perfection.
Hap & Leonard novels (Jackrabbit Smile, Rusty Puppies, Savage Season, Of Mice and Minestrone, and Honky Tonk Samurai) by Joe Lansdale: If you like your crime with a good bit of humor then give Hap & Leonard a go. They’ve never let me down.
Killfile and Flashmob by Christopher Farnsworth: A bodyguard with a unique ability. I used to complain that I wanted more Cade (President’s Vampire) tales from Farnsworth. Now I also want more John Smith yarns.
Ruler of the Night by David Morrell: The final of Morrell’s Thomas De Quincey (the Opium Eater) trilogy. If there was ever a series that when described to me I’d think I wouldn’t like, but after reading would actually love, it is this trilogy by Morrell.
My Most Popular Posts of the Year
I always find some surprises in the most popular posts from the year. Here are the top ten for 2020 and some thoughts for each…
10. David Fincher’s “Mank” – The Poster and Trailer are Here! Fincher is always a fan favorite, and Mank’s poster and trailer were no exception.
09. Facts About Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery”. The popularity of this post surprises me since it deals with a short story, but horror is always a favorite subject with many of our readers.
08. Peter Stults’ “28 Days Later” Starring Richard Burton. I love that this remains a top post. Stults’ alternative movie posters are a blast. He chooses great stars to recast in cool movies.
07. Jack Benny in “Casablanca”. This one makes me smile. I love that it made the top ten.
06. Sly Stallone Starring in “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” Video! Sly Stallone makes the list!
05. TOP 10 MOST ICONIC HORROR MOVIE VILLAINS! I told you horror posts are popular.
04. Dracula Through the Ages. I wasn’t kidding. Horror posts are popular.
03. Jackie Daytona Commercial for “Lucky Brews Bar and Grill”! The popularity of this post surprised me. Sure, it has the horror connection, but mixed in is a great amount of humor. Add to that it is for an under-rated horror/comedy (that I hope you are watching) and we get our third most popular post of the year!
02. Louis Meyers: Evidence He Was the Zodiac Killer. Any post about the Zodiac Killer always get a lot of views. This one has even racked up the most comments.
01. Schwarzenegger in “King Lear” & Robin Williams in “Jack and the Beanstalk”. This posts gets more hits than any other post on the site. It’s not horror, it’s not about a real life killer or Sly Stallone, but it is our #1 post again this year.
My All-Time Most Popular Posts
I thought it might be fun to close out with a look at our all-time most popular posts. Did any or most of 2020’s greatest hits make the all-time list? Let’s see…
10. The Life and Times of Deputy U.S. Marshall Bass Reeves. I’m glad that this post remains popular. Our post about Marshall Bass Reeves (a true life hero) went up years before a comic series and movie about him were made. Don’t you love it when we’re ahead of the curve?
09. Gadot & The Rock Strike a Pose. Of course two of the most popular movie stars in the world together in a candid would make our most popular list.
08. TOP 10 MOST ICONIC HORROR MOVIE VILLAINS! Our #5 most popular post for 2020 is our all-time #8 most popular post… and of course it’s horror.
07. Real Clown Or Horror-Movie Clown? This is creepy. Normally I don’t have a problem with clowns, but some of those real clowns were downright scary.
06. Joel Osteen in Jacksonville This has been popular one since it first appeared.
05. Steve Reeves as Superman Of course Steve Reeves never got the chance to play the Man of Steel, but if he had, he would have made a good one.
04. New Billy the Kid Photo Discovered This posts hits on crime and history with the chance of a new discovery. That’s a great combination of topics and popular with a lot of folks.
03. Zodiac Killer Code Cracked? Again we have crime, history, a new discovery and I would even argue horror to make for a popular post.
02. Louis Meyers: Evidence He Was the Zodiac Killer This was not only our #2 all-time favorite, but also the #2 favorite for 2020. And it generated quite a few comments and e-mails.
01. Schwarzenegger in “King Lear” & Robin Williams in “Jack and the Beanstalk”.01. Schwarzenegger in “King Lear” & Robin Williams in “Jack and the Beanstalk”. The #1 post for 2020 is also our #1 all-time favorite.
It’s always interesting to see which topics resonate with fans and continue to be popular longer after the initial post. I wonder how many of our all-time favorites will make the list in 2021? Time will tell… and so will I…. next year!
I love movies. Because of my love of film I search out older movies. Thanks to TCM that’s not as hard to do as it once was. So whenever there’s an older film that I think I might like I check it out.
I’ve watched a lot of silent films. I started with the horror films and then worked my way to comedies. Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd are considered the comedy kings of the silent film era. As I began to watch and learn more about this time period, I was surprised to find that funny man Fatty Arbuckle wasn’t better known. The films I saw with him were as good as any other comedian of the time.
When I came to learn that Arbuckle was the first comedian to be paid one million dollars from a studio, that Arbuckle had mentored both Chaplin and Keaton, that he started his own studio, that he wrote and directed films… well, I needed to know more about this man. What I discovered was pretty sad.
Joe Ramoni has created an excellent overview of Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle’s career. It is worth a watch.
He mentored Charlie Chaplin, discovered Buster Keaton, and changed film comedy forever – before a scandal destroyed his career. His name was Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle. Though you may recognize his name or face, few know the heartbreaking story of his life. This documentary short takes a look back at his controversial life & career to highlight what an instrumental figure he was in the evolution of cinema and why he should be more remembered today.
Written, Compiled and Presented by Joe Ramoni