Someone Needs to Let Me Pick an 80s Movie Soundtrack

Links for a beauteous Wednesday:

RIP, Tie-Dye Dave. That just sucks.

soooo, lemme get this straight. it's ok and ancouraged to make fun of 80s hair bands, but it's also cool to make a movie honoring them? i don't get it.

In the 90s, and early 2000s, I thought it was going to be soooo supercoolawesome when people finally started making 80s nostalgia pieces. I was getting quite sick of the 60s and 70s nostalgia/homage movies, and knew it was only a matter of time before we finally got into the 80s, my era. The soundtracks would be great, the excessive, cocaine-filled scripts would be great, the memories would be great. Then I saw The Wedding Singer, which I believe I indirectly covered last week in talking about my distaste for Adam Sandler movies. Then there was American Psycho, which, umm, was a little different than your average nostalgia movie. Then there was the uninspired retread feel of Hot Tub Time Machine. It culminated last year with the horribly, disappopintingly unfunny Take Me Home Tonight. As far as I can remember, I only approve of one 80s nostalgia movie — Adventureland, a movie that could have been set in any time period, it just so happened that writer/director Greg Mottola grew up in the 80s. It’s at least the only good soundtrack from the genre. Really, how hard was it to get Your Love into a soundtrack before this?

Anyway, the soundtrack is what’s killing me for the latest 80s nostalgia movie, Rock of Ages. Let’s make a rule right here and now, please: No more movies, TV shows, YouTube clips, home videos, school projects or anything done with a camera may use Journey’s Don’t Stop Believin’. NONE, NONE, NONE. We’re over it, right? Right. It’s one thing when Glee uses it two years after The Sopranos famously did. But for the last three years, it’s gotten so played out it’s a punchline. So what does Rock of Ages do? Uses Don’t Stop Believin’ for its climax. C’mon! I don’t care of that’s what the play did, have some self-awareness! The soundtrack overall just blows. I understand it’s more about hair band rock than anything, but is it so hard to believe that there was good music made in the 80s? I seem to remember U2, Springsteen, the Stones, Prince, Tom Petty, Talking Heads, The Smiths, The Cure, Mellancamp, Dire Straits and Corey Hart all being prominently involved in the 80s. Why does every 80s-insprired soundtrack have to include effing Whitesnake? I should really go see this movie then bring back the Movie Music Beatdown I did for a summer put every song on the Rock of Ages soundtrack to the test since just about every one of them has been used already. And most of them have been used as the butt of a pop culture joke, which makes it doubly stupid to use it. At this point, Rock of Ages isn’t even a DVD for me, I’ll be waiting until it’s on Encore in like two years. Can we all agree that this song belongs in the next 80s nostalgia movie? Thanks.

If I still had Netflix streaming, one of the shows I would have been catching up on is Weeds. Seven seasons just seemed too daunting though when I could opt for Party Down’s two seasons. But at least we know now that if you missed it and wanted to catch up on it, it will only take you eight seasons, because Showtime has decided to end the show after this summer’s final season. I love how in the Entertainment Weekly article, the word “cancel” never shows up. Only “end.” That’s what happens to long-running shows, they end. They don’t get canceled. What’s the threshold for that? How long does a show have to be on the air for it to “end” instead of being “canceled”? I’m going with five years. In the end, every show is canceled.

Say what you want about the big, bad corporation coming to take over the Poconos movie business from the great independent theaters we have, but unless there was a theater like Cinemark at the Stroud Mall, you wouldn’t be able to get something like the Dark Knight Movie Marathon on July 19. The Stroud Cinemark and the one in Moosic are both taking part in it, where you can see all three movies for $25. We all bemoaned the luck of our friends in other towns that were able to go to the all-day Avengers movie marathon in May, but now we get a chance to get in on the Dark Knight goodness.

could (should?) it have been here last weekend?

But we missed out on some other Dark Knight goodies this weekend — at least I think so. The Batman Tumbler is on tour to promote Dark Knight Rises, admittedly a pretty hokey little tour. It’s not like Christian Bale is driving it or Chris Nolan will be there to answer questions. It’s no different than KITT or the General Lee showing up at a carnival or something. But I’m all about getting the Poconos some kind of national recognition, and with the race this weekend, the Tumbler should have been here. Check out the other dates and locations — lots of big cities, lots of Walmarts. But then there is one date — Brooklyn, Mich. — that doesn’t seem to make any sense. Until you see that it’s home of the Michigan International Speedway and a NASCAR race weekend. Hope we didn’t drop the ball on this one and miss our chance to get the Tumbler around here for the race.

It’s just now sinking in how close it is to Emmy season. You know because every TV website is bleeding dry its pre-nomination coverage, painfully going category-by-category every day so that one day is actually dedicated to “best actress, TV movie or miniseries.” But at least one just decided to come out and give projections, long shots and hopefuls for every category all at once. And it’s a pretty good list from Scott Feinberg at the Hollywood Reporter. Just so everyone knows, over the next month until the Emmy nominations come out July 19, I’ll be discounting any list that does not include Giancarlo Esposito for his supporting actor work on Breaking Bad last year.

Missed the Django Unchained trailer last week, sooooooo …

You need three good things to make a trailer, all of which come with equal importance. You need to give people an idea of what the movie is about, which gives them a reason to see the movie. You need to reveal at least one or two very special, important scenes from the movie, be it eye-catching action, gut-busting humor or gripping drama. And, you need a kicker line. After people watch a trailer, it’s the main thing they’ll go away thinking about. So this is a good time to mention that for the last year or so since this movie was announced, I had been wondering how to pronounce “Django.” Is it duh-jango? Is it DEE-jango? DEE-jayngo? Is it a rolled j like a Spanish version, like DEE-yango? I couldn’t figure it out. Leave it to Quentin Tarantino to get into my head and answer this frustrating question for me in the trailer with one of the coolest trailer kicker lines I’ve ever heard: “It’s JAYNG-oh. The J is silent.” So there you have it! I haven’t been able to get that line out of my head for a week. Luckily, it knocked another trailer line, the Thunder Song from the Ted red band trailer. Sorry, can’t link to that. But you have Google, I’m sure. I can, however, link to a slightly different Django Unchained international trailer. The only problem with either of them is Christoph Waltz sounds exactly like he did in Inglourious Basterds. I’d like to see him a little differently, please. TRAILER GRADE: B+.

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