SCENE: A brightly lit CIRCUS
And now, the incredible flying Gorgonzo!
GORGONZO a CLOWN enters. He is happy and full of life. He is also DOOMED. He waves to the crowd, dons a leather helmet, then enters an oversized CANNON. An ASSISTANT steps up and lights a playfully large fuse. The crowd tenses as the fuse reaches the cannon. Suddenly, a violent explosion. A shower of GORE flies out the front of the cannon. There is CLOWN everywhere. A deathly silence hangs in the air for a second before the WAILING of hundreds of CHILDREN fills the void.
Cut to the FORENSIC TEAM SQUAD! arriving on the scene.
BISHOP, STEVE, and LISA enter the circus tent. BISHOP and STEVE make their way towards the CANNON. LISA stops halfway, to look at a poster.
So I’m running late for work at my usual time (really late), and hop on a bus that reliably carries me to my workplace without incident. Only this time, perched right there in one of the seats towards the front of the bus is the girl whom I broke up with messily 3 months ago.
Robotman’s brain: You’d better act like you don’t see her dude!
The Hollywood trend of remaking old franchises continues here with “When A Stranger Calls”, a remake of a 1979 educational filmstrip reminding children to not answer the phone when they’re home alone. It’s painfully obvious film executives have been digging deeper for properties after the last available television show was adapted last year (the dreadful Different Strokes 2005: Blood Fist).
The problem here is the sparse source material, with the original filmstrip clocking in at just under 5 minutes. Director Simon West was forced to pad the length with a convoluted backstory involving an inept burgler (played by Michael Moore) who devises various schemes to trick children into revealing they’re home alone, with the intention of robbing the house. If that sounds familiar to you, it should: It’s almost identical to the plot of Home Alone 2: Lost in New York and it’s sequel, Terminator 3.
Does Steve Jobs have a Magical Leprechaun stuffed up his ass?
The original iPod was a 3 pound monstrosity with a 35 minute battery life and an outer shell made of children’s teeth. Yet despite all that it became an enormous sales success and brought Apple back from the brink of bankruptcy. Since then, every new iPod release has been almost immediately trumped by its competitors in storage space, features and price, and yet the iPod brand continues to outsell all others by close to 3 to 1.
Good marketing? Voodoo magic? Gypsy voodoo magic? More importantly, can it happen again? Meet the new Video iPod.
Flightplan follows ace flightplanner Captain Stacy “Flightplan Shitter” Kurtis (Jodie Foster) during an eventful day of filing a flightplan for her 6:30pm flight from Los Angeles International to Chicago O’Hare.
The film portrays Kurtis as a dying breed, the solo flightplan filer who prefers to work alone. The audience quickly gets the impression that she’s somewhat of a loose cannon, a maverick of the flightplan-filing world, an impression that’s brought home by her constant humming of Kenny Loggins’ Danger Zone.
“She plays too fast and loose with the rules, always looking to cut corners,” says an Air Traffic controller (a surprisingly intense Alan Thicke in a powerful cameo) to an intern. “She’ll get someone killed one of these days with those antics.”
Looking confused, the intern replies. “Then why don’t they fire her?”
“Because she’s the best.”
For FAA paperwork enthusiasts like myself, the film should have been a home run. But the film quickly falls into the same trap as other big-budget adaptations (the screenplay was adapted from a stack of 300 photocopies of commercial flight plans from 1994-1996). I looked forward to watching the dynamic Foster pour over SIGMETs charts, forecasted cloud cover reports and turbulence warnings, but in reality this occupies no more than 60% of the film.
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What ever happend to that chick who played the pre-teen love interest in that old Fred Savage video game movie The Wizard? I wonder what she’s doing these days?