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This is just a reminder that Bill Murray was up to some weird stuff in the middle to late '90s. “Kingpin” is raucous and watchable, but God, remember “Larger Than Life”? Elephant humor, folks! What about “The Man Who Knew Too Little”? Or “Wild Things”? Or — oh yes — “Space Jam”? Thank God he gave us “Rushmore” because that filmography was getting grim.
“Babes in Toyland”
I command you to embrace the holiday spirit and revisit this 1961 classic with Ray Bolger and Annette Funicello. No, it's not the Laurel and Hardy version, but it features Ann Jillian of the perfect '80s sitcom “It's a Living” as Bo Peep.
“Doug Benson: Doug Dynasty”
And now, ladies and gentlemen, my favorite Doug Benson joke: “People say pot smokers are lazy. I disagree. I am a multitasking pot smoker. Just the other day I was walking down the street. Stoned. OK, I won”t count that as two things. I was walking down the street. I was putting eye drops in my eyes. I was talking on my cellphone. And I was getting hit by a car.”
Woody Harrelson on “Saturday Night Live”
I don't know what you've heard about this season of “SNL,” but believe this: The show rebounded in a major way with this Woody Harrelson-hosted episode. And I'm not just referring to those cameos by Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson, though they were deliiiightful.
Jennifer Lawrence on “The Colbert Report”
Am I the only person who thinks Jennifer Lawrence is an amazing actress who's never been in a great movie? “Winter's Bone” was artfully directed and terribly dull. “Silver Linings Playbook” was a bizarre, tone-shifting melodrama that wanted to be funny without having any funny characters. “The Hunger Games” was overblown. (“Catching Fire” was much better, admittedly.) And “American Hustle” was a bunch of famous people dressing up like faces from the “Guess Who?” board game — and J-Law was so, so miscast. Anyway! Here she is with Colbert.
The climactic sequence of this film is one of the truly underrated Pixar moments. That insane system of swinging doors looked like something out of German expressionistic cinema.
Never forget that Ming Na of “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” “ER,” and the greatest movie of all time “Street Fighter” was also the voice of a titular Disney heroine. I'd also like to remind you that the Ming Na-starring “The Joy Luck Club” was not nominated for a single Academy Award. Not one. And that's the year Tommy Lee Jones won an Oscar for chasing Harrison Ford through some tunnels. Amy Tan, we could've used a whole book about this disappointment.
Let me guess: Somehow you never saw this 2011 movie starring (get ready!) Channing Tatum, Chris Pratt, and Oscar Isaac as a group of old high school friends attending their reunion. Rosario Dawson's there too. I think she looks at the camera at one point and goes, “You guys are gonna LOVE these actors in 2014.” Then she slowly backs away into the darkness.
“St. Elmo's Fire”
All of these Brat Pack titles expire December 1, so be sure to revel in their '80s greatness while you can. “St. Elmo's Fire” has some of the most legitimate acting of any Brat Pack movie, to be sure — thanks mostly to the presence of an awesome non-Brat Pracker, Mare Winningham.
“About Last Night”
It's weird that Demi Moore was an established Brat Packer in the '80s because I truly think the world has nearly erased its memory of pre-“Ghost” Demi. Look at how adorable she was! Good scene here. Sporting some “Courtney Cox in the 'Dancing in the Dark' video” realness aussi.
Kelly LeBrock had a strange pop culture life. In her two biggest movies she costarred with Gene Wilder (“The Woman in Red”) and Anthony Michael Hall (“Weird Science”). This movie is about as kitschy as you remembered, though what you probably don't remember is that Kelly LeBrock was famous for being one of the first celebrities to own a hyperbaric chamber. Now you'll never forget. Also: What the hell was up with Gilda Radner's character in “The Woman in Red”?