Talking Black Sunday

Had enough football yet? Of course you have! Modern media beats everything to death. But just in case you needed even more football action than you can find on ESPN and the Networks, Retroist friend Mr. Sweet and I got together to talk about the not-nearly-loved-enough classic 1977 film Black Sunday.
Black Sunday is about a terrorist attempt to attack the Super Bowl by detonating a blimp on the unsuspecting spectators. It stars Robert Shaw, Bruce Dern, the Pittsburg Steelers and Dallas Cowboys, the deputy from Halloween 2, the voice of KITT, the girl from Santa Claus and the Ice Cream Bunny, and President Carter. Watch in on Netflix Instant, then listen to Mr Sweet’s and my insightful commentary, which you can find here.

Full On YouTube – The Midnight Hour

Did you know you can see some of the best movies from our childhoods on YouTube in their entirety? They are
When I told you about the Smart Aleck’s Guide To Halloween Specials at the beginning of the month, I said they mentioned an ABC movie called The Midnight Hour which I never got the chance to see. I also said I had been looking for it but couldn’t find it. I remembered that sad fact yesterday and so gave YouTube another chance. And thank goodness for new content because there it was, the full movie. It was chopped into four parts, sadly, but it was all still there. And what a great movie it was. Well, it was great for the nostalgic factor anyway. This is something that just oozes with the spirit of the mid-80s and something I would have loved if I had seen it back then. I’m not sure today just how I missed this one, but I’m glad I got to see it now. And if you would like to see it as Halloween draws to its midnight hour, I’ve posted all four parts below.


A couple nights ago, I remembered something from my early, early days of TV. Seriously, it was one of my earliest TV memories. Two couples were having dinner at night when one of the ladies says that one of the men had made inappropriate advances at her. We keep clean, so I won’t state it the way she did, but it was pretty funny, which is why I have remembered it all these years and why my normally clean-mouthed family would quote it from time to time during my childhood. I’m pretty sure that I had seen this movie on HBO, which meant that I hadn’t seen it at my house since we didn’t have HBO. I was also pretty sure that the rest of the movie featured a bunch of wacky things happening to this one guy who was accused of making the inappropriate advance. I wasn’t sure that was enough to go on to find the film. Turns out it was. The inappropriate advance was so distinctive that I found the film immediately. It was Neighbors from 1981.


Neighbors is exactly what I remembered it being: a series of wacky events that happen to one pretty straight-laced guy over the course of one night and the next day. What I hadn’t remembered is that it stars Jim Belushi and Dan Aykroyd . Dan Aykroyd with blonde hair and blue eyes, which is really weird. It also has a very young and beautiful Cathy Moriarty. The movie is basically a collection of these wacky events, which are funny enough, I guess, but also somewhat disturbing. In fact, though it kind of has a happy ending, the movie was too disturbing for me to really enjoy. In fact, the only part I really thought was funny was when an old tow truck driver calls Belushi a bad name and punches him in the gut.

You might like it, though, so if you want to check it out, head on over to Crackle where you can catch it for free. But if you do watch it, please remember to keep your inappropriate advances to yourself.

Was Andre the Giant in a Conan Movie?

You know what would be awesome? A battle to the death featuring the 80s versions of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Andre the Giant. And that awesome thing happened. Well, sort of. It turns out that Andre the Giant was inside the costume of the god/monster Daggoth which Arnold as Conan fights at the end of Conan the Destroyer. So we do have an Arnold-Andre deathmatch. At least a kind of one.



Poison Ivy

So you couldn’t see Meatballs. Maybe you just didn’t have the cash for the theater ticket, or maybe Mom was leary of Bill Murray. Whatever the reason, NBC had you covered. In 1985, they brought us the Meatballs-esque Poison Ivy.

Poison Ivy featured NBC stars Michael J. Fox and Nancy McKeon as summer camp counselors. At least I think that’s what they were. To tell you the truth, I can’t remember much about the movie except that Fox and McKeon were in it. I also remember that one of the campers was so in love with McKeon that he took off his clothes and rolled in poison ivy so he would get infected and she would have to treat him (maybe that means she was the nurse?). As a guy who is terminally allergic to poison ivy, it is a scene that gives me the chills every time I think of it (which is usually every time I’m in nature). It really was a step too far for me. Hey, I loved Jo Polniaczek as much as the next guy, but I think I love my skin a little more. Lastly, I remember I loved this film because it was indeed my Meatballs.

(Apparently the film jumped to ABC at some point. I can’t explain that one.)

If you’re like me and just barely remember this film, you’re in luck. The entire thing is up on YouTube. Refresh your memory, and don’t forget the calamine lotion!