The Mouse That Charmed: An Evening with Kim Darby

When I called the now-retired actress Kim Darby at her California home a few months ago–to discuss her more obscure 1960s and 1970s work–she apologized (needlessly) for having taken a few days to free up her schedule. Her sister was in town, she explained, and her house was a total mess. Dishes were piled up … Continue reading

Stupid: “Reckless” (1984)

 There’s laconic, and then there’s just stupid. There’s posturing, and then there’s just stupid. There’s petulant, and then there’s just stupid. There’s fun stupid, campy stupid, what-the-hell-were-they-thinking stupid, offensive stupid, disgusting stupid. I’ve seen plenty of entertaining movies that can be described these ways, but never, until I saw “Reckless,” one that so relentlessly brought the word “stupid” … Continue reading

“Gleaming the Cube” (1989)

The late-80s Christian Slater vehicle “Gleaming the Cube” must have arisen out of the most breathless Hollywood pitch meeting in history. A California skateboarding punk teen (Slater) whose parents just don’t understand him avenges his adopted Vietnamese brother’s murder by some Vietnamese toughs that work for a shady arms dealer who’s posing as a legit … Continue reading

“Friends, Lovers & Lunatics” (1989)

The previews on the VHS tape for the screwball Canadian farce “Friends, Lovers & Lunatics” (which can also be screened in its entirety on YouTube, under the alternate title “Crazy Horse”) are far more amusing than anything in the movie itself. Not least because one of the previews is for “Friends, Lovers & Lunatics”! Now … Continue reading

“Touch and Go” (1986)

 A quick bit of trivia about this movie: during their poverty-stricken early days, Slash and Axl Rose of Guns n’ Roses took jobs as extras in “Touch and Go’s” hockey scenes, which were shot in Los Angeles in 1984 (according to Slash’s autobiography). While available on DVD, I watched this movie on a VHS copy … Continue reading

“Let’s Get Harry” (1986)

Believe it or not, this is the first movie I’ve covered for this blog to have the “Alan Smithee” designation, that is, a film in which the director (in this case Stuart Rosenberg) was so disgusted with the end product he took his name off of it. Some Alan Smithee movies are a pretty good … Continue reading

Exciting updates (April 2014)

Hi everyone. I always start these updates with profuse apologies for the scarcity of posts in recent months. The main reason this time is that, as of September, I’ve been a semi-regular freelance film reviewer for The Village Voice, which has been very exciting but (needless to say) time consuming. My piece on the Tribeca … Continue reading