The 25th Anniversary Edition 1992 Version: Movies

It’s time once again for the Anniversary Edition. This is a series where we highlight the 25th anniversary of some of our favorite things. These include movies, TV shows, video games, comics and music that came out during the year of 1992. A lot of big things debuted or made a huge impact that year and so we highlight some of those in this series.

We have previously looked at the year in music and video games in 1992. We now turn to the movies of 1992. This was another huge year at the box office. There were some pretty big landmark films that released in 1992. You remember them? Let’s check them out.

Of the top 10 movies of 1992, what was the highest grossing film that year? Both the domestic and worldwide number 1 film was Aladdin ($507 million worldwide).  It was released on November 25 and became the first full length animated film to gross $200+ million.  Interesting tidbit, it took the 5th weekend of its release before it was #1 at the box office.

What film was number 1 at the box office for the longest consecutive amount of weeks? It was actually a tie between The Hand that Rocks the Cradle (released on January 10th) and Wayne’s World (released on February 14th).  They both spent 5 weeks at number 1 on the box office.  Wayne’s World would go on to be #8 domestically & number #10 worldwide box office with $183 million.

What were the other top films in the top 5 worldwide released in 1991.  They were The Bodyguard (Released November 25th, 2nd worldwide with $411 million), Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (Released November 20th, 3rd worldwide with $358.9 million) Basic Instinct (Released March 20th, 4th worldwide with $352.9 million) and Lethal Weapon 3 (Released May 15th, 5th worldwide with $321.7 million).

The rest of the top 10 worldwide grossing films include Batman Returns (June 16th), A Few Good Men (December 9th), Sister Act (May 29th), Bram Stoker’s Dracula (November 13th) and Wayne’s World.

Other big films that released in 1992 were White Men Can’t Jump (March 27th), Patriot Games (June 5th), A League of Their Own (July 1st), Unforgiven (August 3rd), Sneakers (September 11th), The Last of the Mohicans  (September 25th), and Under Siege (October 9th).

Which of the films listed was your favorite? Obviously there were so many more films that came out in 1992. Is there a film not listed that came from 1992 that you enjoy? Leave a comment and share them here. Next time, we will look at the year in TV shows in 1992. Until then, crank up the old VCR and enjoy some classic movies.

Built on Hope: Initial Thought of Rogue One

Last night I went and saw Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and had a lot of thoughts and feelings about the film so I made sure to jot some of them down so that when I sat down to write this post I would have them as well as thoughts the next day.

rogue-one

I went to see it at a different theater than I saw The Force Awakens.  So it is a little difficult to compare the atmosphere to those two films.  It also was a different format (Rogue One in 2D vs The Force Awakens in IMAX 3D).  The theater that I was at wasn’t sold out for that showing (8:00pm) but there was a good crowd.

Here’s some of my thoughts on the film (I will try to keep it as spoiler free as possible):

It was weird to jump right into the movie.  Granted this was expected that there wasn’t going to be an opening crawl but even the title card didn’t appear until after an opening scene and it didn’t even have the words Star Wars in it.

There were a lot of great cameos and Easter Eggs in this film.  Everything from the overt to the covert was mentioned throughout the film with little nods to the prequels to things that led directly into A New Hope.  Longtime Star Wars fans could appreciate how they were all worked in and how they contributed to the film.

I loved the battle of Scariff.  It was probably my favorite part of the entire film.  Both the land and space battles where done very well.  I’m always a huge fan of space battles and this one did a great job of that with the Rebel fleet going against the Imperial fleet in some great dogfighting.  The ground battle was filmed exceptionally well and made for some heartwrenching moments.  It definitely fits right in with the best battle sequences in a Star Wars film.

One thing that was a little unnerving was some of the character development of a few of the characters.  To me, it seemed the character arc was a little rushed for a couple of them.  I understood where they were going with it and it is difficult to try and have it come together in the span of just one movie.  I think it would’ve been helpful to have more time and backstory to flesh it out but that’s more a minor thing than anything.

I will say (trying to avoid spoilers) that the CGI work in this film is something that I don’t think would’ve been possible five or ten years ago.  What was done in this film is impressive that they were able to weave together a story that was made in 2016 which leads directly into a film made in 1977.

Overall I really enjoyed the film.  It is a very dark film.  Gareth Edwards (who also directed Godzilla which I loved) did a tremendous job bringing this film to the screen.  It is a film that is different from other Star Wars films but it does make it’s home in that universe.  At the heart of the film is hope.  A line that is echoed several times is “Rebellions are built on hope.”  Even in the midst of all the darkness, there still is that glimmer of hope that shines through.

I will have to watch it several more times to really get a gauge on where it ranks for me.  I really enjoyed it but I don’t think I would put it right up there with Episodes IV, V & VI.  It probably comes down to between it and The Force Awakens.  I will say if you’re a Star Wars fan it is totally worth seeing.  It was worth waiting a year to see and will help tide things over until Episode VIII releases next year.

What Defines You: Thoughts on Doctor Strange

I finally went and saw Doctor Strange today.  This was a film that I had been looking forward to seeing for a long time.  I’m a fan of the Marvel films and I expected this to be another good one and I wasn’t disappointed.  It was a great film and gave me a lot to think about both as I was watching but also afterwards.

Doctor Strange

I thought I’d share some of my thoughts here (for those that haven’t seen it yet, there’s not really any spoilers here).  The film tells the story of Dr. Stephen Strange, a world famous neurosurgeon.  He is the best and he knows it.  He lives in a penthouse suite in New York City.  He has the best car, best clothes and lives the high life.  For him, his life centers around his practice of medicine.  That all changes when one night he’s in a horrific car accident and is badly injured.  His hands are so badly hurt that he is unable to do neurosurgery ever again.

At this point, Strange is lost.  The thing that he thought defined him as a person was gone.  He viewed himself as first and foremost a doctor and when that was taken away from him he didn’t know what to do.  He then goes on a journey that leads him to Katmandu, Tibet and would eventually lead him to become the Sorcerer Supreme and defend Earth against all magical and mystical threats.

That thought, that question of what defines a person is one that is something that resonates with everyone.  We all look to find what defines us individually.  For some like Stephen Strange, it is through career.  For some it is through a relationship.  For others it may be status.  Whatever it may be, there is a desire to find that thing and point to it as what defines us.  But what happens when something happens to us like what happened to Stephen Strange?  What if someone loses that job?  What if that relationship ends?  What if that thing that we thought defined us isn’t there anymore?

For me I have had to learn that ultimately what defines me is my relationship with Jesus Christ.  First and foremost I’m a follower of Jesus.  Things in my life may come and go but He is constant.  He never changes.  He is always there.  I can trust in Him through thick and thin.

Doctor Strange was a fun action comic book movie.  It was also a good movie in that it makes you think.  Anytime a film can make you think and reflect is a good thing.  And it is good to reflect on who we are and what does define us…or who defines us.

The 25th Anniversary Edition 1991 Version: Movies

It’s time once again for the Anniversary Edition. This is a series where we highlight the 25th anniversary of some of our favorite things. These include movies, TV shows, video games, comics and music that came out during the year of 1991. A lot of big things debuted or made a huge impact that year and so we highlight some of those in this series.

We have previously looked at the year in music and video games in 1991. We now turn to the movies of 1991. This was another huge year at the box office. There were some pretty big landmark films that released in 1991. You remember them? Let’s check them out.

Of the top 10 movies of 1991, what was the highest grossing film that year? Interesting enough, both the domestic and worldwide number 1 film was Terminator 2:  Judgment Day.  It was released on July 3rd and had the highest grossing weekend that year and broke the record at the time for the highest grossing R rated film.

What film was number 1 at the box office for the longest consecutive amount of weeks? It was actually a tie between a film released in 1990 & one in 1991.  The one released in 1990 was Home Alone and the one released in 1991 was Silence of the Lambs (released on February 14th).  They both spent 5 weeks at number 1 on the box office.  Silence of the Lambs would go on to be #4 domestically & number #5 worldwide box office with $272.7 million.

What were the other top films in the top 5 worldwide released in 1991.  They were Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (Released June 14th, 2nd worldwide with $390.4 million), Beauty and the Beast (Released November 15th, 3rd worldwide with $351.8 million) and Hook (Released December 11th, 4th worldwide with $300.8 million)

The rest of the top 10 worldwide grossing films include JFK (December 20th), The Addams Family (November 22nd), Cape Fear (November 15th), Hot Shots! (August 2nd) and City Slickers (June 7th).

Other big films that released in 1991 were Sleeping with the Enemy (February 8th), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II:  The Secret of the Ooze (March 22nd), Thelma and Louise (May 24th), The Rocketeer (June 21st), The Naked Gun 2 & 1/2:  The Smell of Fear (June 28th), Regarding Henry/Point Break/Boyz n the Hood (those three released on July 12th), Star Trek VI:  The Undiscovered Country (December 6th), and Father of the Bride (December 20th).

Which of the films listed was your favorite? Obviously there were so many more films that came out in 1991. Is there a film not listed that came from 1991 that you enjoy? Leave a comment and share them here. Next time, we will look at the year in TV shows in 1991. Until then, crank up the old VCR and enjoy some classic movies.

Thoughts on Living in a World of Remakes

“What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”  Ecclesiastes 1:9

Those words were written thoughts of years ago but they are very poignant even today.  The Teacher (most believe was King Solomon) wrote those words reflecting on his life and the culture of that time.  It could also be applied to the culture of today very easily.  There are many things that translate to this era and time period.

One of those things that has been on my mind of recent has been the prevalence of society to embrace remakes.  You turn on the TV or you go to a movie theater and you are hard pressed to not see a remake or a reboot.  It is everywhere.  Granted, this is not a new phenomenon.  I will say that it has become more prevalent in the last few years.

Why is this so?  There’s probably several reasons.  One, Hollywood is about making money.  These franchises that are getting remade are ones that have made a lot of money in the past and executives probably believe that they can continue to make money.  Two, we as a society are rooted in nostalgia.  Each generation has our shows and movies that we loved growing up and we want to connect with those times again.  So as each generation grows into adulthood, we see “new” versions of classic (to them) forms of their childhood favorites.  Three, coming up with new ideas is hard.  It’s a lot easier to recycle old ideas than is to come up with original ideas (especially when you’re in the business of making money like Hollywood is).

I know some people love remakes and some people hate remakes.  Where do I tend to fall?  I tend to be somewhere in the middle.  I think there are some good remakes.  Most of those tend to be ones that honor the spirit of the original and can also tell a good story.  However, the majority of remakes aren’t that.  Many of them do not honor the spirit of the original.  They also don’t tell a compelling story.  Some are just bad ripoffs or they are just carbon copies and are simply made to try and make money (in some cases successfully and in some cases not).

Because we are made in the image of God, we have a desire to create.  Stories are a part of that.  There are elements in all stories that run as a thread throughout.  I do think that having a prevalence of remakes and reboots isn’t as good as having a prevalence of more original stories.  So when there is a movie or TV show that isn’t a remake or reboot, I try and make a point to watch it.  It may be good.  It may not be good.  But if there is that support for more original content then maybe there might be more of it made so that it isn’t all remakes and reboots.

The Teacher spoke very insightfully of his time and culture.  He also spoke very insightfully of ours as well.

“I Saw The Light”: Thoughts on the Hank Williams biopic

I was born and raised in the south.  Part of what comes with that is growing up with country music, and when I was growing up even more so.  I was raised on listening to country music radio stations like 650AM WSM and the Grand Ole Opry.  One of its classic stars was Hank Williams Sr.  He is an iconic figure in the world of country music and was one of its biggest stars in the 1940s & 50s.  He led a tragic life that saw it end at age 29.  His music influenced countless artists and still is as impactful today.

I Saw The Light

I Saw The Light is a biopic that focuses on the singer’s life from the time of his marriage of his first wife Audrey until the end of his life.  The film shows the highest of the highs as he played the Grand Ole Opry and toured around the country.  It also shows the lowest of the lows with his bouts with alcoholism and drugs as well as his infidelity.  The film stars Tom Hiddleston as Hank and Elisabeth Olsen as Audrey.

I was blown away by the film.  Hiddleston does a tremendous job as Hank.  Not only the acting performance but also the musical performance.  The filmmakers didn’t use old recordings of Hank Williams but Tom himself sung the songs and sounded very much like ole Hank.  When he was on stage with the suit, hat and guitar singing, he looked and sounded like Hank Williams.  He captured what made Hank Williams such a lovable figure as well as a tragic one.  Elisabeth Olsen had a tremendous performance as well.  She was strong and vulnerable playing off of Hiddleston’s Hank.

There were several parts of the film that made me (and the rest of the audience watching) laugh because they were very much like real life.  Certain comments would be said that would totally fit what was going on or just were a part of life.

The title of the movie comes from one of his classic songs.  “I Saw The Light” was a gospel song that at the time it was recorded wasn’t much of a hit but after his death became one of the most well known gospel songs of all time.  Anyone that that grew up in a southern church will know that song.  I thought it was kind of fitting to see this film on Good Friday because of the reminder of Jesus and how because of Jesus I personally have seen the light.  And the ending of the film when the artists and the audience are singing “I Saw The Light” is so moving.

I was fortunate in that it opened in this area with it’s limited release (I think it opens nationwide next week).  I Saw The Light is one of the best films I have seen in a movie theater.  I definitely think this film should be nominated (and win) a lot of awards.  I highly recommend going to see this film when you can.