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Category Archives: Tune In…

TV, cinema, music, radio and internet. I’m addicted.

Jen Versus the Volcano

It’s 1990 and Tom Hanks agrees to make a quirky movie called…Joe Versus the Volcano. As an 11 year old, I happily emersed myself in this movie and loved the montage where he was stranded on his four watertight, all purpose trunks in the middle of the ocean. But it wasn’t until I watched it recently, that it struck an entirely different chord with me.

As a kid, I used to fast forward the opening sequence where Joe Banks and the rest of the workers trudge slowly into work, looking depressed and as grey as the sidewalk. It was boring, it was bland. And I guess that’s exactly the point. Joe was living this ghastly conformist life that made him sick. He didn’t even know why he did things…he didn’t question them. He just went to work every day, half asleep. Gah.

Besides the excellent rectal probe references, which I obviously hadn’t picked up before, his arrival at work made me draw some comparisons to my own morning ritual. Ok, so I don’t have it as bad as poor Joe (and I don’t work with rectal probes), but I often feel blotchy and drained sitting under the fluorescent lights. And I swear to you that my glands go up and my throat feels scratchy when I arrived there and turn on my computer. (Maybe its just because its flu season?)

There is a scene where Joe’s Manager – Mr Waturi is on the phone repeating himself…”But can he do the job. I know he can get the job but can he DO the job? I’m NOT arguing that with you. I’m not arguing that with YOU. I’m not ARGUING that with you. I’m not ARGUING that with you Harry! Harry… Harry… Yeah Harry… but can he DO the job. I know he can GET the job but can he do the job?” I’m pretty sure I’ve said the exact same thing. Well….almost.

A terrible hypochondriac, Joe is told he has a “brain cloud”. An incurable disease with no symptoms. In fact, you don’t even realise there’s a problem until you’re dead. So after an offer he can’t refuse, he is given the option to live out his remaining days like a hero…and embark on the adventure of a lifetime. He sets sail to the island of Waponi Woo where he will jump into a live volcano to appease the volcano god.

The best quote of the whole movie is when Patricia says to Joe:

“My father says that almost the whole world is asleep. Everybody you know. Everybody you see. Everybody you talk to. He says that only a few people are awake, and they live in a state of constant, total amazement.”

So the question remains…when do I book myself on the first yacht to Waponi Woo? When do I wake up and start living in a state of constant, total amazement?

 
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Posted by on May 29, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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I am the undead.

Well I felt a bit like that yesterday – I was at home sick. I sat in my soft clothes (those clothes that are the most comfiest and softest of all) on the couch under my homemade quilt. I dedicated my day to the tv hoping I would find some escapism there. I ended up watching the following movies:

  • Breaking Dawn – Part 1 (Sooooo dramatically angsty and over the top. Whatever, I’m still Team Jacob)
  • Abduction (Continuing my Taylor Lautner fest….he was the only good thing about that movie)
  • Zombies of Mass Destruction (Oh Lord…see below)
  • The Changeling (I only watched 30 mins of this one when it was nearly at the end. That was 30 mins too long)

Zombies of Mass Destruction – I managed to watch the entire 89 minutes of this movie. I even had a bonafide ‘laugh out loud’ moment when the first zombie attacked without warning, fantastic. But other than that, it was pretty terrible. But isn’t that what a good zombie flick is all about?

I have a slight fascination with the undead. Well specifically, the zombification undead…not neccesarily the vamparific undead. Although I like them too. I try to imagine what I would do if my little town went all hungry for brains on me. Like would I stay at home and board all the windows and doors up, hoping to be rescued? Or would I go all militia on their arses and find a sawn off shotgun? I’d like to think I’d do what was necessary.

So as far as I can tell, there are two types of zombies:-

  1. The slow-moving, slow thinking, falling apart at the seams zombie; and
  2. The incredibly fast, incredibly strong (still a bit brain-dead – ha ha) zombie.

There are a lot of classic zombie films but I’m going to look at a few I like…and one of the best has got to be Shaun of the Dead. Besides my slight crush on Simon Pegg…this movie is hilariously funny and takes the mick out of the genre. Zombie Type – slow-moving.

What about the Resident Evil franchise? I’ll happily waste a couple of hours watching Mila Jovovich kick some butt. Does that woman ever age? And won’t the Umbrella Corporation ever learn from its mistakes? I don’t think so…we’re getting ready for the fifth installment of that one. Zombie Type –  fast-moving.

Of course I also got in on the 28 Days Later action and the subsequent 28 Weeks Later follow-up. I think what we learnt from that one is, those zombies will starve to death given the appropriate amount of time. So definitely find a place to hole up for a month. Zombie Type – fast-moving.

What’s next….ok how about a Will Smith hero action zombie thriller I Am Legend? What makes this one different is poor Will is left all alone in the world with only his dog for company. And those undead don’t like the light. The first time I saw this movie I definitely was glad a deadly global virus hadn’t taken over. It scared the bejesus outta me. Zombie Type – fast-moving.

And lastly – Zombieland. I stumbled across this one accidentally and I totally give it two dead thumbs up. It’s a zombie flick for those of you with a quick wit and dry sense of humour. I loved Woody Harrelson in this. Zombie Type – fast-moving.

So kids, what have we learnt from all this?

  1. Keep a good store of dry goods in your pantry;
  2. Learn how to use a weapon for self-defence (slow-moving zombies can be killed with vinyl records);
  3. Know how to spot the signs of the burgeoning undead…blank stare, pallid blotchy skin, a penchant for human flesh;
  4. Do what’s necessary to survive. Once your best friend, husband or sister turns…they aren’t really themselves anymore and will substantially benefit from a swift beheading.

Stay alert, stay human.

 
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Posted by on March 22, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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J-Lo versus J-Woah!

These feet were meant for dancing.

Unfortunately, its been forever since I’ve let them loose. I’ll admit that sometimes my dance moves can get a little crazy and people aren’t sure if I’m the best dancer they’ve ever seen on or if I’m just losing control of all my motor skills.

There are a few songs that will ALWAYS get me on the dance floor. And as much as it’s a little lame…Jennifer Lopez’s ‘Jenny from the Block’ is one of them. For two reasons…we have the same name and unlike the real J-Lo, I still know where I came from. H to the E to double L yes…!

This photo was taken on my birthday about 5 years ago. I can’t help but love it. I don’t know what move I’m pulling there but I look pretty happy about it. I’d love to hear which song does the same thing to you!!! I’m still, I’m still Jenny from the block.

Don't be fooled by the rocks that I got....

 
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Posted by on March 1, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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It’s alive! Weird Science that is.

Continuing on with my nostalgic trip down 80’s pop culture lane, this week I bring you – Weird Science (1985).

If you can get past the fact that two adolescent boys actually create a ‘perfect’ woman from a Barbie doll and magazine pictures fed into a computer (how do you even feed a computer?) then you’ll be fine. If you can’t, then don’t bother watching this film.

This was the time when seemingly implausible plots were the norm. And they didn’t feel the need to provide an explaination in any way. Something which I quite like. Of course its perfectly normal that two geeks create a woman with super human powers and a rockin’ body from nothing but a bit of plastic and a seriously underwhelming computer (I guess they did hack into a government mainframe for extra power).

Its stars Anthony Michael Hall as Gary Wallace. Michael Hall also starred in Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club (Breakfast Club yes please, Sixteen Candles not so much).

The perfect woman they create is played by Kelly LeBrock (model/actress). I guess she certainly looks the part. I mean, get a load of those lips people….and this was before Botox.

So why do I like this movie? If you’re waiting for an amazing insight….you’re probably reading the wrong blog. I’ll only ever disappoint you. I like this movie because I watched it at a time in my life which was all about fun. And this movie is fun. I’m pretty sure I also had a crush on Michael Hall, probably cause he was the weird one. I did watch him several years ago in The Dead Zone as a real life grown up man, and yes, this time the crush was real.

If you’re looking for a bit of escapism and fun, why not give this movie a go? What have you got to lose besides 94 minutes of your life?

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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Who do the voodoo like Cyndi do?

Two things have become very clear to me since I started my blog.

  1. I’m quite obviously obsessed with the 1980’s (I honestly did not realise this); and
  2. Cyndi Lauper is everywhere.

In my post about the Goonies, Cyndi was in my head singing “its good enough, its good enough for me oh why eye eye eye eeeeyyyeeee.” When I wrote about Girls Just Wanna… again, there was Cyndi. And then this morning I woke up with an intense need to watch another 1980’s piece of cinema – Vibes, starring the one and only, Cyndi.

Seriously only watch this film if you're a huge Cyndi fan

Oh Cyndi darling, is this some crazy voodoo spell you’ve put on me? Were you some sleeper cell, giving me subliminal messages via 80’s pop music over 20 years ago? So that one day I’d wake up, watch all of your films and even quite possibly purchase your greatest hits on iTunes? (I did just do this BTW).

I honestly think she is pretty awesome. She was bucking the trends way back then. I couldn’t be bothered likening her to some of today’s artists because well, I don’t feel the need to prove anything.

I love the funny little squinty thing she does with her eyes. So there you go, Cyndi, it seems your plan has worked and worked well.

PS Your song True Colours still makes me cry. Peace out C-Girl.

I'm not sure if Cyndi needs glasses but I think its endearing.

 
7 Comments

Posted by on February 17, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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Girls Just Wanna…

If you were a girl growing up in the 1980’s, you should remember the following to be the gospel truth:

  • Fluro clothes were in;
  • You made up dance routines (in the above clothes) to songs like Funkytown;
  • You crimped your hair and usually wore it in a side ponytail;
  • You had sleepovers at your friend’s house, watched Dirty Dancing (and hit pause when Johnny got out of bed so you could stare at his bum); and…
  • Sarah Jessica Parker had not morphed into Carrie Bradshaw and was not the definitive goddess of fashion.

In fact, SJP was just starting out and starred in one of my favourite terrible 80’s movies….Girls Just Want to Have Fun. If you’re not familiar with it, here is the plot synopsis in 10 words or less.

Awkward new girl is a great dancer and charms hot guy.

Ok, so that’s 11 words but the movie does go for 90 mins. Also gracing the screen is the rebellious Helen Hunt and the annoying Shannon Doherty. It has everything going for it, iconic 80’s fashion, dancing to iconic 80’s music and smooth moves from an iconic 80’s dude.

Despite the fact that SJP is of course, the heroine in this movie, I think I identify more with Helen’s character – Lynne Stone. I mean who doesn’t love a girl in a grasshopper hat??? No one, that’s who.

Um excuse me, have you seen my pet grasshopper?

So yes, I know it’s a daggy movie. But it brings back great memories for me. So either watch it and accept it for what it is or don’t. If you do, I guarantee you’ll be singing Cyndi Lauper for days.

Lynne, where is Hoppy? And why do you insist on wearing animals on your head?

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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Goonies Never Say Die!!

Have you ever watched a movie so many times that you think your childhood was defined by it? Hello world, meet The Goonies!

“Listen, okay? You guys’ll never believe me. There was two cop cars, okay? And they were chasing this four-wheel deal, this real neat ORV, and there were bullets flying all over the place. It was the most amazing thing I ever saw”
-Chunk
 
“First you gotta do the truffle shuffle.”
-Mouth
 
“I’ve got an idea. Why don’t we just spread chocolate all over the floor and let Chunk eat his way through?”
-Mouth
 
“Yeah! thas whah I said, boobie twaps!”
-Data
 

My brothers and I watched it over and over, wishing that Mikey, Data, Mouth and Chunk were our real life friends and we were all Goonies together. I have an over-active, romanticized imagination at the best of times so this was not hard for me to do. Realising that it was probably never going to happen and that no, we wouldn’t get to hunt for “One-Eyed Willy’s” treasure, so began the seemingly endless formations of our own groups. Some of the ones I can remember were:

  • Formed a treasure hunting group with boys next door – The Skulls or The Meatheads (there is debate on the name).
  • Formed a new aged group with school friends – The Buddhas
  • Formed the ultimate rock group to worship and adore her – The Madonna Group.

Subsequently, I remember being hauled into teachers office to discuss how these groups made others feel left out and a group hierarchy made some members feel belittled. And so ended the forming of the groups.

I emphatically believe that The Goonies has truly stood the test of time. Movies of a similar vintage i.e. Robocop has not faired so well. Although it’s probably still worth watching, even if it is to wonder how we ever thought the special effects were so good.

I can still watch The Goonies with absolute pleasure. It defines all that is good about the 1980’s, my childhood and treasure hunting. Here’s to the Truffle Shuffle!! (Even Peter Griffin gets in on that action). Watch it this weekend!

 
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Posted by on February 14, 2012 in Tune In...

 

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