Go, Go Gadget Movie, Weird Al invades the Airwaves, and Spike Lee Does The Right Thing: Thirty Twenty Ten – Jul 19-25

Covering three decades of pop culture always leads to a lot to cover, but 1989’s anniversaries could be a show all its own. We’ve got one of the greatest cult films of the decade, the ultimate template for the romantic comedy, one of the best sketch shows of all-time, and quite possibly Spike Lee’s finest hour. The other decades have stuff too, but 1989 brings the quality like no other week in Thirty Twenty Ten’s history. All that and more this week on Thirty Twenty Ten, your weekly look back on the week that was 30, 20, and 10 years ago.

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7 thoughts on “Go, Go Gadget Movie, Weird Al invades the Airwaves, and Spike Lee Does The Right Thing: Thirty Twenty Ten – Jul 19-25

  1. I think the fans of the original BBC Being Human series hated the remake. The BBC series was a fairly big cult hit in the UK, and as far as I remember it’s actually pretty good – I definitely watched up to season 3 after which I think it tailed off in quality a bit as the original cast all left – the guy who played the vampire quit to do the Hobbit movies (he played the sexy dwarf).

    It’s a BBC show, so it’s pretty low budget, but worth checking out I would say.

  2. UHF I finally watched in 2017 on Movieplex as after I heard Chris gush about it a lot, I took the chance and it was worth it. I loved it! It’s hilarious. I think most of the jokes work and how over the top it got. It has a lot of charm and I see the enthusiasm in the final result of the film, it’s very fun. Amusingly, I know people who are Weird Al fans but admitted they never saw UHF. Which is funny to me but hey, what can you do?

    Inspector Gadget out of what I call pick your poison week of 1999, I saw in theaters. I was already familiar with the cartoon as I watched it via reruns on Nickelodeon so I was excited to see the movie at the time. Keywords being at the time.

    As it stands now, it’s terrible. Tries way too hard to be funny and as my friend Austin pointed out to me, it was no doubt edited to death. Scenes that were cut and nothing to do with each other are just edited in as random dream sequences. It’s so bad that director David Kellogg never directed anything again after this and Cool as Ice.

    The Haunting remake, hate it. Really came off as wasted potential with the wrong director and the wrong script. Jan de Bont just cannot do Horror. Apparently this was reshot a lot and I can believe it. The whole film is an effects reel. It is the definition of style and no substance like a Michael Bay film. And even when it tries to be emotional, it’s laughable like the climax for example. And it’s a shame because it had potential but alas. At least Lili Taylor got a better Horror film with The Conjuring. Ten bucks says James Wan saw The Haunting remake and thought to himself, “she deserves a better Horror film” and cast her in The Conjuring.

    And I love the Netflix series! Better than the remake and given who directed the episodes and is the showrunner, Mike Flanagan, I always say “Always bet on Mike Flanagan.” The man’s a Horror genius. I can’t wait to see Doctor Sleep!

    And fun fact, Stephen King was supposed to write the remake but he and Steven Spielberg couldn’t agree on anything so, Rose Red, it’s kind of what could had been. And even Wes Craven was approached but didn’t work out.

    And finally Orphan, won’t lie, I’m glaring at you three because Orphan deserves a lot more respect than laughter. It’s one of the most massively underrated Horror films of the 2000s. You may laugh at the twist but considering the girl tried to have sex with a very distraught and drunk father, it comes off as disturbing.

    I saw this film when I was still in Colombia at the time. It was on a whim as I heard positive word of mouth. And I was genuinely impressed. Isabelle Furhmann really nailed the role of Esther, the titular character. She really came off as disturbing, intimidating, like, she just nailed everything about this.

    It’s a testament of the script and direction to make this work really well. It was even upfront a bit that this is a killer kid movie before that twist and it didn’t feel cheap either. And it had a sense of humor too, just darker. But I really do recommend Orphan. Watch it this October even.

  3. Man, I LOVE the ‘99 segment, especially this summer. I had just turned 6, so I’d just started forming pop culture memories, and Inspector Gadget was probably the first marketing campaign I was aware of. I distinctly remember being at a Nature preserve with my cousin and being ECSTATIC when my mom told us that we were going to see the movie at a drive-in theater. Don’t remember anything about the film except the (hideous) final shot, but that theater is miraculously still around twenty years later. If you’re ever near Honor, MI, check out the Cherry Bowl! It’s sleazy and dusty and expensive as hell and well worth a trip.

    Side story: picked up a conspicuously unlabeled VHS at an estate sale last summer- a trailer full of 9/11 memorabilia. Don’t know what I was expecting, but all that’s on the tape is a super-fuzzy recording of Woodstock ‘99. Dude had some weird tastes.

  4. Shag. I actually know a couple in their 30’s who are into Shag dancing and their basic thought is, “We love it. It’s a fantastic hobby. And it has no future.” They are almost always the youngest people at their Shag tournaments, they’ve tried to get others involved without any luck, and while they plan to keep on doing it eventually the vast bulk of the current people doing it have around ten or fifteen years before they’ll be too old for it. It’s weird to think of hobbies as dying, but pigeon racing used to be fairly big, and even model trains are a shell of their former self. What hobbies do you think that are hanging on by their fingernails in 2019 will be effectively gone by 2039?

    Oh, and it is so weird for me to think of 1989 as further away in time than the early 1960’s were from when this film was released. I just feel like the early 60’s to the late 80’s saw more change than the late 80’s to now.

    UHF. I watched it fairly recently and some of the skits are still hilarious it’s definitely not the masterpiece I thought that it was when I was a kid. But what was your favorite sketch from it? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2XbCWmY0eqY&t=1s
    When Harry Met Sally fully deserves to be a classic. It may be the first film in which I ever saw a real “grown up” long term relationship on the screen. Most rom-coms show such a tiny sliver of people’s romantic lives. For instance, I dated my wife for two years before we got married and we’ve been married for 12 years since then. The actual, “Should we date / should we be serious with each other” phase lasted a month at most which is less than half of one percent of the time we’ve been together. But in rom-com land that half of one percent would be the entire film. But not in When Harry Met Sally where we get to see them both at various phases of life. What are some other romantic films that deal with people at multiple phases of their lives together?
    Kids in the Hall. I loved this show in Junior High but what is interesting to me in retrospect is how I don’t recall anyone at the time talking about how gay it was. Looking back I can understand that we all took the guys dressing up as girls to be just something funny that the show did, like bugs bunny cross-dressing on old Looney toons shorts. That is, Bugs and the Kids in the Hall may have tried to act like sexy members of the opposite gender, but that was just because it was funny. But the show had a ton of gay content (a gay guy dressing up as Dracula to seduce a sports-bro dude he brought back to his apartment stands out in my mind) but I just don’t recall anyone talking about that aspect of it. Was that unique to me or was the gay element discussed when you watched it?
    Oh, and in the early 2000’s I had a quasi- girlfriend who set herself the goal of recording every single Kids in the Hall episode on tape. I told her that DVD’s of TV shows were starting to be released and they would probably do Kids in the Hall eventually but she had no interest in that. The challenge of doing it seemed to interest her more than having an actual collection.

    Do the Right Thing. I’d never seen this before and watched it this weekend and I’m glad I did. It was a solid solid film and watching it didn’t feel like homework. One note on “Fight the power” being the “Song of the summer” It was 100% the number one rap song of the time, but that was not enough for it to break into the regular Billboard top 100 chart for all music. So it was very popular in a niche (and rap was still niche in 1989, no rap song would make the Billboard year end list until the early 1990’s) but Do the Right Thing was pretty popular at the time (slightly behind Weekend at Bernie’s and Roadhouse in terms of box office) and a huge percentage of that audience had probably never heard of it at the time.

    All Your Base song: This is one of the first things I remember being shared around my fraternity when we all got back from summer break. “Look at this weird thing I found on the internet!”- was juuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuust starting to become something that was generally accepted as something to do. I also vividly recall that soon after the Iraq War was over and US forces captured all of Saddam’s bases a montage of them doing so was set to this song. And after that we never had a problem with Iraq again.

    I’ve never seen any version of “The Haunting.” Which one should I watch?
    The Haunting (2018 Netflix TV Show)
    The Haunting (1963 film)
    The Haunting (1999 film)

  5. Man, I LOVE the ‘99 segment, especially this summer. I had just turned 6, so I’d just started forming pop culture memories, and Inspector Gadget was probably the first marketing campaign I was aware of. I distinctly remember being at a Nature preserve with my cousin and being ECSTATIC when my mom told us that we were going to see the movie at a drive-in theater. Don’t remember anything about the film except the (hideous) final shot, but that theater is miraculously still around twenty years later. If you’re ever near Honor, MI, check out the Cherry Bowl! It’s sleazy and dusty and expensive as hell and well worth a trip.

    Side story: picked up a conspicuously unlabeled VHS at an estate sale last summer, at a trailer full of 9/11 memorabilia. Don’t know what I was expecting, but all that’s on the tape is a super-fuzzy recording of Woodstock ‘99. Dude had some weird tastes.

  6. UHF is funny, however the commentary on the dvd is amazing , Micheal Richards pops in and you see him pop up to yell at al and the director ” HEYYYY HOWD YOU GET INTO MY HOUSE”

    Kids in the hall is so fucking funny, i have two gay friends and we bond over KITH once every few years, and in FB posts i interact with them using Frenchesa Firoe lines, of everything they did my top 5 skits they did Creative Possiblites is one of my favs …i dont know why…Office Submarine keeps getting me , i adore this show.

    Fuck Cow & Chicken , it never appealed to me its a show I activity avoid

    tsk tsk tsk…oh Inspector Gadget…such a miserable failure…and its not just Broderick even though he is a key part of why it stinks

    I lovelove love Drop Dead Georgous i foudn it funny, plus at the time anything with Kristan Dunst and Denise Richards i was all over, I also enjoyed the later sorta male version called Happy Texas which will show up in October

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