1981

The Hand

January 28, 2021

How realistic is any story about a severed hand that attacks people, and are we able to get past that premise to enjoy this movie? Is Michael Caine’s descent into madness effective or too much? Were the effects believable? And what is this film saying about psychology and science in the 80s? Tune in to this week’s show to get answers to these questions and more!

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To the Stars by Hard Ways (Per Aspera Ad Astra)

January 14, 2021

What works and what doesn’t work in this film? What makes the interesting and sometimes dated effects work so well for us? And which version should you watch? Tune in to this week’s show to get answers to these questions and more!

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Pennies From Heaven

November 28, 2019

Was this film too much of a shift for Steve Martin’s comedy fans? How does it work as a musical? And why are they lip syncing? Tune in to this week’s show to get these answers and more!

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Scanners

October 31, 2019

Is this movie more than just an exploding head? Does the world building give us enough to go with? Can we just like it because it’s fun? Tune in to the show to get these answers and more!

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Outland

February 11, 2016

In the early 80s, Peter Hyams was trying to get a western made. Unfortunately for him, no studio was interested in the genre right then; as far as they were concerned, westerns were dead. Then Hyams made the realization that westerns were still alive but that they’d been transposed to the world of sci-fi. And with that, he wrote “Outland.” Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue our Movies and Their Remakes series with the ‘remake’ of “High Noon,” Hyams’ 1981 film “Outland.”

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Stripes

December 11, 2015

Harold Ramis made his big screen debut acting in Ivan Reitman’s 1981 military comedy “Stripes,” which he also co-wrote for Reitman, having worked on “Animal House” and “Meatballs” with him a few years before. He’d go on to appear in a number of films throughout his career, and generally played the straight man to people like Bill Murray. Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue our Harold Ramis series with 1981’s “Stripes.”

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The French Lieutenant’s Woman

September 4, 2015

Meryl Streep received her first nomination for Best Actress in a film that one would think had been lost in time if not for the recent Criterion Collection release — Karel Reisz’s 1981 film “The French Lieutenant’s Woman.” She lost to Katherine Hepburn in “On Golden Pond,” which makes sense, but Streep’s performance is still a fascinating one. Join us — Pete Wright and Andy Nelson — as we continue our Meryl Streep series with Reisz’s film.

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Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior

May 8, 2015

With the international popularity of “Mad Max,” George Miller was excited to get back into the driver’s seat and continue with his hero as he wandered the dystopian wastes of Australia looking for fuel. It was a smart move as “Mad Max 2,” or “The Road Warrior” as it was released in the States, not only did well at the box office but helped build the cult following of this franchise. Join us — Pete Wright and Andy Nelson — as we continue our Mad Max series with 1981’s “Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior.”

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Time Bandits

July 11, 2014

Getting out from under the shadow of Monty Python proved difficult for Terry Gilliam early in his solo career — no one in America would finance any films for him — so while he waited to get his big movie, “Brazil,” off the ground, he wrote a script for an idea he’d been kicking around that would appeal to the whole family. “Time Bandits” proved to be a box office success and still is one of Gilliam’s most profitable movies, allowing him to make “Brazil” immediately afterward and continue in the business. Join us — Pete Wright and Andy Nelson — as we dig into his 1981 film.

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Atlantic City

June 20, 2014

It’s time to draw the curtains on our 1981 series with another Louis Malle film, Atlantic City. While technically made in 1979 and released in Canada and France in 1980, this film wasn’t released in the US until April 1981. Because of that, however, it does feel like a film from the 70s to us, like many films in our series ended up doing. Join us — Pete Wright and Andy Nelson — as we discuss Malle’s second film to be released in 1981 in the US.

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