United Artists via Everett Collection
It all starts with a mullet and an attitude. By the time that Patrick Swayze appeared as the legendary bouncer (or cooler) Dalton in 1989's Road House, he was two years removed from his star making turn in Dirty Dancing. Audiences already knew that he could dance, but nobody knew that he could rip a guy's throat out with his bare hands.
In the 25 years since its release, Road House has become a cult classic, both for its over-the-top fight scenes and Swayze's mock-philosophical dialogue and awesome hair. With its frequent appearances on cable television, it's never out of sight for very long, but we've compiled some fun facts to help you enjoy the greatest bad movie ever the next time you find yourself drawn in by the majesty of Swayze. Just remember the immortal words of Dalton: "I want you to be nice, until it's time not to be nice."
1. Although the film is set in the town of Jasper, Missouri, the exterior of the film's infamous bar The Double Deuce was built strictly for the filming on location in California and then was torn down. Some of the interiors were shot, however, in a real bar in Anaheim that has since closed.
2. Screenwriter David Lee Henry has said that Dalton was named after the town of Dalton, Georgia. He stopped at a bar there during a road trip and it ended up serving in part as the inspiration for his script.
3. Dalton is shown reading Jim Harrison's Legends of the Fall, which is the basis for the 1994 Brad Pitt-Anthony Hopkins movie of the same name.
4. Movie trailers frequently feature parts that are subsequently cut before a film is released, but Road House has the unofficial record for the most occurrences of deleted scenes. The original trailer had at least five different clips that don't appear in the finished version.
5. The Jeff Healey Band, which serves as the house band of The Double Deuce, had their biggest hit "Angel Eyes" on the charts while Road House was still in theaters, but the song isn't from the movie. Healey, the blind Canadian guitarist, and his group recorded their album See the Light concurrently with the movie soundtrack.
6. In a sad coincidence, both Swayze and Ben Gazzara, who played Dalton's nemesis Brad Wesley, both died of pancreatic cancer… Swayze in 2009 and Gazzara in 2012.
7. As awesome as Swayze's mullet was, the actor himself didn't like it. In the book One Last Dance, Swayze's biographer Wendy Leigh quoted the actor as calling the Road House hair style the "bane of my existence."
8. Red West, who played the owner of the auto parts store (also named Red), was a high school friend of Elvis Presley. West was a charter member of Presley's "Memphis Mafia" and functioned as one of the singer's bodyguards into the 1970s.
9. Even though Dalton famously says that "Pain don't hurt," the axiom didn't apply to Swayze. Among the various ways he was banged up during shooting was when Marshall Teague, who played Jimmy (the bad guy who gets his throat ripped out), hit Swayze with what he thought was a prop log... only to find out that it was actual hard wood.
10. One of the fired bartenders from The Double Deuce was played by John Doe, better known to music fans as the founder of the punk band X.
11. Kevin Tighe, who played Dalton's boss, bar owner Frank Tilghman, was better known for his work on television. He was one of the stars of the '70s hit Emergency! and later played Locke's father on Lost.
12. Even though Swayze is shown practicing t'ai chi, Dalton never actually uses that particular style of martial arts in the movie's fight scenes. Instead he uses moves from various sources, including the Korean discipline of hapkido.
13. Annette Bening was originally cast as "Doc," the ER doctor played by Kelly Lynch.
14. Lynch said in an interview with The AV Club that Bill Murray and his brothers like to call her husband, screenwriter Mitch Glazer (Scrooged), every time that they see Road House on TV to remind him about her steamy sex scenes with Swayze.
15. Lynch reportedly spent a month hanging around a real emergency room to prepare for her role. She learned the proper way to sew a medical stitch… but then the script was changed so that she never got to showcase her new skill.
16. Dalton had a thing for Buicks. Before he leaves for Missouri the "beater" car that he drives to protect his prized Mercedes is a 1964 Buick Riviera. Once he gets to Jasper, he buys the 1965 edition of the same car model.
17. Just as he had with Dirty Dancing, Swayze sings on the soundtrack and his song "Cliff's Edge" is heard on a radio in the film.
18. The Otis Redding song "These Arms of Mine" is used during one of the love scenes between Swayze and Lynch. In Dirty Dancing, the same song is used during the initial love scene between Swayze and Jennifer Grey.
19. Kitschy stage director Timothy Haskell did an off-Broadway retelling of Road House in 2003 titled Road House: The Stage Version of the Cinema Classic That Starred Patrick Swayze Except This One Stars Taimak from the '80s Cult Classic 'The Last Dragon' Wearing a Blonde Mullet Wig.Try saying that three times fast.
20. Road House has been a running gag on both Mystery Science Theater 3000, where it was Crow's favorite movie, and in Family Guy, where Peter punctuates every fight by name-checking the film. Not to be outdone, teammates of Cincinnati Bengals' quarterback Andy Dalton call him "Road House" thanks to his surname.
New Kids On The Block star Joey Mcintyre is celebrating after successfully completing the Boston Marathon on Monday (21Apr14), a year on from the tragic bombings in 2013. The singer was among around 20,000 runners taking part in the annual race in Massachusetts last year (15Apr13) when two explosions ripped through the crowds close to the finish line.
McIntyre, a Boston native, had crossed the line just 11 minutes before the bombs went off.
He pulled on his sneakers once again on Monday to run in honour of his mother, who suffers from Alzheimer's, and also in tribute to his hometown.
He completed the 26.2 mile (42.2 kilometre) race nine minutes faster than his three hour, 57 minute and six second trek in 2013 and took to Twitter.com to share his impressive time with fans, writing, "3:48:11 baby!!! #BostonMarathon . Couldn't have done it without you guys!!"
McIntyre also applauded the efforts of his bandmate Danny Wood, who ran with him in the Boston Marathon.
He tweeted, "Big congrats 4 (sic) an amazing 3:50 by my man @dannywood! #celebrate".
They were cheered on at the finish line by their fellow NKOTB member Donnie Wahlberg, whose brother Jim Wahlberg had also competed in the race.
Walt Disney Pictures via Everett Collection
Johnny Depp used to be relevant.
Films like Edward Scissorhands and Ed Wood established Depp as an idiosyncratic performer willing to appear in offbeat projects. Who can forget his iconic performance in Jim Jarmusch's revisionist Western Dead Man, or in Terry Gilliam's drug odyssey Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas? It seemed, for a while anyway, that Depp was a different kind of movie star. He was weird, for sure, but also accessible, and hundreds of teenage girls across the world idolized him and cherished his abnormality.
Then came Captain Jack Sparrow. To be fair, the first Pirates of the Caribbean is a great film, but the rest of the series represents a lazy attempt to cash in on the original chapter's unmatched excellence. Depp turned Sparrow into a caricature, and with each Pirates installment, the magic of the original performance rapidly diminished. If Depp wasn't making a Pirates movie, he could be seen in the latest Tim Burton project, or in The Rum Diary, a film that might as well be an inferior sequel to Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Not all of Depp's recent movies are trash, but most of them are, and at the very least they suggest that Depp is more interested in making money than making quality movies.
Depp's forthcoming big studio film Transcendence might just be the final nail in the coffin. Is Depp, the once enigmatic auteur performer of the 1990s, officially over?
There's certainly room for a comeback, but at the present moment, all signs suggest that Depp has lost his cultural and cinematic significance. Like Will Smith, Depp continues to appear in Hollywood blockbusters and makes a ton of money for doing so, but his films are hardly as influential or important as they were in the 1990s. Moreover, I think we can all agree that The Tourist and The Lone Ranger don't work as mainstream entertainment in the way the first Pirates does. This is important to point out, because it's not necessarily Depp's constant appearance in mainstream films that is his problem (after all, it works well for Leonardo DiCaprio and George Clooney), but his inability to distinguish between intelligent blockbusters and mindless drek.
I understand that show business is tough to crack, and everyone, even Depp, needs to make a living. Who am I, after all, to criticize his career choices? I get it. But Depp has committed arguably the worst sin possible for a movie star. He's spent years selling the audience on his unique star persona, only to appear in lame tent-pole productions that are void of creativity, originality, and respect for the audience. Was this Depp's plan all along, or did he unintentionally fall off track at some point?
We'll never know, but one thing is certain: the jig is up, and the name Johnny Depp barely generates excitement from the same people who hung his poster on their bedroom walls. What do you think? Cast your vote below.
For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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Veteran entertainer Barbra Streisand has found a new outlet for her creativity after picking up a paintbrush and easel to help her relax. The Funny Girl star has always admired good art, but she only started to paint and draw for herself last summer (13), and now her home is filled with portraits of her family members, her beloved dog, Sammy, and colourful landscape pieces.
The private superstar showed off some of her efforts on Friday (07Feb14) after inviting cameras from U.S. breakfast show Today into her mansion, and admitted her new hobby has helped her de-stress from the pressures of life in the spotlight.
She says, "I've just started really... This is a great thing, 'cause this is not like being in the theatre where you get the critique from the audience at the moment; this is like making movies for me - you put out the work, you are not the work. The work stands by itself."
Streisand isn't the first celebrity artist - Johnny Depp, David Bowie, Rolling Stones veteran Ronnie Wood, Sylvester Stallone, comedian Jim Carrey and actress Lucy Liu are just some of the stars who have taken to the blank canvas to create art.
George Clooney, Tom Hanks and Julianne Moore have added their tributes to the late, great Philip Seymour Hoffman as Hollywood continues to come to terms with the actor's shocking death. The Oscar winner was found dead from an apparent drug overdose in his New York City apartment on Sunday (02Feb14), and friends and former co-workers like Mia Farrow, Jim Carrey, Whoopi Goldberg, Steve Martin and Evan Rachel Wood were among the first celebrities to express their condolences via Twitter.com.
Now Clooney admits the death of his The Ides of March co-star has left him speechless, stating, "There are no words... it's just terrible", while Hanks says of his Charlie Wilson's War colleague, "This is a horrible day for those who worked with Philip. He was a giant talent."
Actress Moore has also added her voice to the outpouring of Hollywood tributes after co-starring with Hoffman in Boogie Nights, Magnolia and The Big Lebowski. They had also completed work on the upcoming The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 and had been in the middle of filming Mockingjay - Part 2 at the time of his passing.
She says, "I feel so fortunate to have known and worked with the extraordinary Philip Seymour Hoffman, and am deeply saddened by his passing."
Another Boogie Nights castmate, Mark Wahlberg, adds, "Saddened by the passing of friend and colleague Philip Seymour Hoffman...such a tragic loss. Miss you, Scotty J. RIP."
And Gwyneth Paltrow, who teamed up with Hoffman for 1999 thriller The Talented Mr. Ripley, also commented on the tragedy by sharing an old photo of the pair with fellow co-star Jude Law during their stay in Italy for the movie shoot.
In the accompanying caption, she wrote, "Ischia 1998, post dinner, post shooting... Philip was a true genius."
Broadway theatre bosses will dim their marquee lights on Wednesday night (05Feb14) in memory of the triple Tony Award nominee.
The Master star won high praise and a Tony nod for each of his three outings on the Great White Way - his debut in True West in 2000, his follow-up performance in Long Day's Journey into Night in 2003, and his turn in a 2012 production of Death of a Salesman.
Charlotte St. Martin of the Broadway League says, "Philip Seymour Hoffman, a three-time Tony Award nominee, was a true artist who loved the theatre. His prolific body of work encompassed various mediums including theatre, film and television, and we'll always be grateful for his boundless and profound talent that he shared with us on the Broadway stage. Our thoughts go out to his family, friends and fans."
Actress Jennifer Lawrence has become the latest celebrity to pay tribute to tragic actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, who passed away from an apparent drug overdose on Sunday (02Feb14). The 46 year old's body was found in his New York apartment after a friend grew concerned following failed attempts to contact the star.
At the time of his death, Hoffman was filming The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1 & 2 and now the franchise star is remembering her fallen castmate.
A statement from the actress, director Francis Lawrence and The Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins, reads, "Words cannot convey the devastating loss we are all feeling right now. Philip was a wonderful person and an exceptional talent, and our hearts are breaking. Our deepest condolences go out to his family."
Bosses from Lionsgate Films, the production company behind the movie, and franchise star Sam Claflin have also issued statements.
Other tributes have come from Steve Martin, Ricky Gervais, Aaron Paul, Rose McGowan, Justin Timberlake, Minnie Driver, Octavia Spencer, Anna Kendrick, Lena Dunham, Mia Farrow, Elijah Wood and Jim Carrey.
Mia Farrow, Jim Carrey and Elijah Wood are among the many stars who have paid tribute to actor Philip Seymour Hoffman following his death from an apparent drug overdose on Sunday (02Feb14). The Oscar-winning Capote star, who was found dead in his West Village, New York apartment, was one of Hollywood's most respected actors and celebrities were quick to pay their tributes on social media.
Mia Farrow writes, "OH NO!!!!! Philip Seymour Hoffman has died. A truly kind, wonderful man and one of our greatest actors - ever."
Jim Carrey adds, "Dear Philip, a beautiful beautiful soul. For the most sensitive among us the noise can be too much. Bless your heart."
Hoffman's Ides of March co-star Evan Rachel Wood, expressed her sadness on Twitter.com, writing, "I am sad on so many levels about the loss of Philip Seymour Hoffman. One of the greats. Losing him this way is absolutely tragic."
Shocked by the news, Elijah Wood adds, "heartbroken and shocked. what a true loss. rest in peace, Philip Seymour Hoffman".
And Whoopi Goldberg writes, "WTF (sic)!!!!philip-seymour-hoffman-found-dead-in-his-apartment, a truly great actor... Gone.. I hope someone says hey whoop it's a hoax..R.I.P".
She later added, "I see that it's not a hoax PSH is dead condolences to his family."
Other tributes have come from Steve Martin, Ricky Gervais, Aaron Paul, Rose McGowan, Justin Timberlake, Minnie Driver, Octavia Spencer, Anna Kendrick and Lena Dunham, who tweets, "Beautiful beautiful man. We have lost so much joy to something so joyless. RIP PSH."
Meanwhile, Val Kilmer adds, "Blu (sic) day, Philip Seymour Hoffman od'd (overdosed). Addiction comes fr (from) trying to escape the pain of living. We all struggle with this but Drugs never help.
Lions Gate via Everett Collection
When we last left our heroes, they had conquered all opponents in the 74th Annual Hunger Games, returned home to their newly refurbished living quarters in District 12, and fallen haplessly to the cannibalism of PTSD. And now we're back! Hitching our wagons once again to laconic Katniss Everdeen and her sweet-natured, just-for-the-camera boyfriend Peeta Mellark as they gear up for a second go at the Capitol's killing fields.
But hold your horses — there's a good hour and a half before we step back into the arena. However, the time spent with Katniss and Peeta before the announcement that they'll be competing again for the ceremonial Quarter Quell does not drag. In fact, it's got some of the film franchise's most interesting commentary about celebrity, reality television, and the media so far, well outweighing the merit of The Hunger Games' satire on the subject matter by having Katniss struggle with her responsibilities as Panem's idol. Does she abide by the command of status quo, delighting in the public's applause for her and keeping them complacently saturated with her smiles and curtsies? Or does Katniss hold three fingers high in opposition to the machine into which she has been thrown? It's a quarrel that the real Jennifer Lawrence would handle with a castigation of the media and a joke about sandwiches, or something... but her stakes are, admittedly, much lower. Harvey Weinstein isn't threatening to kill her secret boyfriend.
Through this chapter, Katniss also grapples with a more personal warfare: her devotion to Gale (despite her inability to commit to the idea of love) and her family, her complicated, moralistic affection for Peeta, her remorse over losing Rue, and her agonizing desire to flee the eye of the public and the Capitol. Oftentimes, Katniss' depression and guilty conscience transcends the bounds of sappy. Her soap opera scenes with a soot-covered Gale really push the limits, saved if only by the undeniable grace and charisma of star Lawrence at every step along the way of this film. So it's sappy, but never too sappy.
In fact, Catching Fire is a masterpiece of pushing limits as far as they'll extend before the point of diminishing returns. Director Francis Lawrence maintains an ambiance that lends to emotional investment but never imposes too much realism as to drip into territories of grit. All of Catching Fire lives in a dreamlike state, a stark contrast to Hunger Games' guttural, grimacing quality that robbed it of the life force Suzanne Collins pumped into her first novel.
Once we get to the thunderdome, our engines are effectively revved for the "fun part." Katniss, Peeta, and their array of allies and enemies traverse a nightmare course that seems perfectly suited for a videogame spin-off. At this point, we've spent just enough time with the secondary characters to grow a bit fond of them — deliberately obnoxious Finnick, jarringly provocative Johanna, offbeat geeks Beedee and Wiress — but not quite enough to dissolve the mystery surrounding any of them or their true intentions (which become more and more enigmatic as the film progresses). We only need adhere to Katniss and Peeta once tossed in the pit of doom that is the 75th Hunger Games arena, but finding real characters in the other tributes makes for a far more fun round of extreme manhunt.
But Catching Fire doesn't vie for anything particularly grand. It entertains and engages, having fun with and anchoring weight to its characters and circumstances, but stays within the expected confines of what a Hunger Games movie can be. It's a good one, but without shooting for succinctly interesting or surprising work with Katniss and her relationships or taking a stab at anything but the obvious in terms of sending up the militant tyrannical autocracy, it never even closes in on the possibility of being a great one.
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Duane Allman left us 42 years ago this week, and while he's remembered as one of rock's greatest guitar stylists -- not to mention one of its greatest tragedies, felled by a motorcycle mishap when he was just 24 -- his whole story is seldom told. The release of the seven-disc box set Skydog: The Duane Allman Retrospective goes a long way towards addressing that issue. Over its vast expanse, besides a crucial handful of tracks from the guitar hero's best-known affiliations, The Allman Brothers Band and Derek & The Dominos, it offers a stunning array of other projects Allman contributed to in his woefully brief lifetime. From Allman's pre-ABB groups to his far-ranging session work, this rich piece of American musical history encompasses every aspect of the six-string sultan's output, often venturing into corners previously familiar only to hardcore aficionados, and definitively displaying the multiple musical personalities of a rock & roll icon. Here are just a few of the unexpected roles in which you'll find Allman over the course of this revelatory collection.
The Garage Rocker: "Gotta Get Away" by The Allman Joys
Here's Duane in full fuzztone mode, ripping into a raw-boned rocker with the mid-'60s band he and brother Gregg fronted.
The Psychedelic Soldier: "Norwegian Wood" by The Hour Glass
After The Allman Joys came late-'60s outfit the Hour Glass, who weren't above venturing into some serious psychedelic territory, as shown by Duane's deft manipulation of an electric sitar on this ambitious Beatles cover.
The Muscle Shoals Soul Man: "Hey Jude" by Wilson Pickett
Speaking of ambitious Beatles covers, before finding fame as a blues-rocking firebrand with The Allman Brothers Band, Duane found another kind of Fame: recording with tons of top-shelf soul singers at Muscle Shoals, Alabama's legendary Fame Studio. "Wicked" Pickett's Fab Four takeover is one of many awe-inspiring examples of Allman's Muscle Shoals tenure included here.
The Session Star: "Beads of Sweat" by Laura Nyro
Even after The Allman Brothers Band's ascendance, Duane continued following his muse far and wide, bringing his guitar prowess to all manner of sessions. Here he joins some of his Muscle Shoals comrades on a trip to New York to back the sophisticated song-poetry of Laura Nyro on an album that also included everyone from jazzman Joe Farrell to Rascals frontman Felix Cavaliere.
The Jazz-Funk Jam Master: "Push Push" by Herbie Mann
Anyone who's heard some of The Allman Brothers Band's epic jams knows that Duane doesn't need a script to follow. Here he chases jazz flute giant Herbie Mann across a 10-minute track full of juicy, jazzy jamming.