Blasts from the Past!(Not the Brendan Fraser movie)

Updated: Sep 15, 2019

So, my film watching has slacked off a little as I have started back at school after a wonderful summer of relaxing. But, am a very happy teacher with a lovely class, so swings and roundabouts. I was sitting here watching the Man Utd Women v Man City Women game and was looking at continuing the mammoth task of replacing the final few DVD’s with Blu Rays and came across Adventures in Babysitting, one of my favourite films of my childhood/teenage hood and started thinking about some films I wouldn’t mind having a little looksee at again. So here’s some of my favourites I’m digging out and making Shell watch with me, whether she wants to or not(to be fair, she’ll just sit on the couch and read and let me get all excited or depressed depending on how these have aged).

First up, the aforementioned ‘Adventures in Babysitting’, a 1987 Comedy Adventures starring, mine and probably quite a few other 11 year-olds, first film crush, Elisabeth Shue as Chris, the eponymous Babysitting, who when looking after Geeky and in ‘love’ with her Brad and his Thor obsessed little sister Sarah and Brad’s annoying friend Daryl, a very early role for Anthony Rapp, has a call from her friend Brenda(Penelope Ann-Miller) to come and rescue her in the city. High jinks, car chases, mobsters and reformed mobsters, hook-handed men, parents in posh party, climbing up skyscrapers, ‘Thor’ and Bradley Whitford ensue. Great fun family film, even now. 18/20 as no matter what this film will always hold a special place in my collection and heart.

Memphis Belle – 1990 – War, Drama. Back in 1990, I was at the cinema every Saturday afternoon and often on a Sunday as well, there were many of us arranging to go on a Friday in school(days before mobiles) but pretty much all of these films I saw with my mate Dave and I’m hoping after reading this, he recommends some more for me to ramble on about. Anyway, telling the true story in a Hollywood version of the crew of The Memphis Belle as they prepare for their 25th and final bombing run. It is a who’s who of 90s films, Matthew Modine, Billy Zane, Eric Stoltz, Tate Donovan, D.B. Sweeney, Sean Astin, Reed Diamond, Harry Connick Jnr, Courtney Gains and Neil Guintoli as well as David Strathairn and John Lithgow. Things don’t go smoothly for our crew, between jealousy and inter crew rivalry, political manoeuvring and propaganda, shells and fighter planes and Harry Connick Jnr singing Danny Boy’ will the ‘Belle’ make it home. I love this film and everything about it. 18/20 and that’s just for the emotion of the final few minutes of flight and D/B Sweeney’s decision-making skills.

Empire Records – 1995 – music, drama, comedy. If you want a film featuring some awesome music, a well-written story, talented young actors, Liv Tyler, Renée Zellweger , Rory Cochrane, Johnny Whitworth, Robin Tunney and Ethan Embry. This tells the story of the workers in the music store ‘Empire Records’ as they try to stop the store becoming a chain and also trying to enjoy a day at work at the same time. Great, great fun, superb music and you can see that the cast enjoyed filming this. A cult classic! – 16/20. And we get to find out what happened to Maxwell Caulfield after Grease 2, he became Rex Manning. Oh, and what other film has ‘Warren Beatty’ shoplifting?


Kuffs – 1992 – Action, Comedy – Back in the 90s, Christian Slater was one of the most bankable stars going, Kuffs was just one of the films I could mention here, such as Pump Up The Volume and Heathers. But rather than talk about ‘Happy Harry Hard-On’, I opted for Kuffs, the story of George Kuffs who has to take over his brother’s ‘district’ in which he runs the ‘civilian auxiliary police force’ and first and foremost, who knew that was a thing. It sounds like a slightly more armed version than the British Special Constables! This film is a journey of self-discovery for George whilst dodging criminal empires, trying to win back his pregnant girlfriend(Milla Jovovich, another 90’s star) as well as working with a partner assigned to him by the Police Force(which only makes sense in my opinion, as these are everyday people and in George’s case, a complete disaster area, given a badge and responsibility, in fact if I lived in that ‘district’ I’d be campaigning for more trained officers n the streets.) Tony Goldwyn, fresh from playing the most disliked character in 1990s Ghost (if you’ve seen the film you know why and if you haven’t, go and watch it now!) A good fun, action, comedy, showcasing what made Christian Slater such as big name – 14/20. He was always called the new Jack Nicholson, but I feel that was harsh for him as he brought his own style to his films, he was more likeable than Jack Nicholson’s acting style, which was generally terrifying.

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