Well it’s finally here, the day we all anticipate throughout the year. It is a day of holy reverence and deep introspection. It is also a day of rodents and farcical meteorological fortune telling. Ladies and gentleman, Groundhog Day has finally arrived. OK, so it’s not as big a deal as Halloween or Christmas, but it still shows up on the calendar and, more importantly, was immortalized in a Bill Murray comedy — so attention must be paid! Sorry to go all Arthur Miller for a moment, but it was during a recent viewing of Harold Ramis’ fantastic 1993 film that I began to ponder what it would be like to be stuck in the same day forever. More to the point, what would it be like to be trapped in one cinematic day for all eternity?
Here is a list of days in moviedom we’d rather not relive.
Day of the Dead
There are few things on this planet that terrify me more than zombies. While I have mostly satisfied myself that there is probably no way the bodies of the recently deceased would ever suddenly spring to life and begin feasting on the flesh of the living, it still gives me the heebies as well as the jeebies to think about. But honestly, that wouldn’t be the worst part in being stuck in this the final chapter of Romero’s ‘Dead Trilogy’ — Day of the Dead. I think I’d much rather deal with the ravenous undead horde than live under the thumb a psychotic military asshole. The only plus side would be having loads of time to spend with Bub.
The Day the Earth Stood Still
The feeling of being completely powerless is not one anyone enjoys. But imagine feeling the most powerless any Earthling can feel every day for the rest of time. In the 1951 sci-fi classic The Day the Earth Stood Still, a visitor from another planet basically tells all of humanity to either stop fighting or it will be destroyed by his robo-henchman Gort. So not only are we being told what to do, but also this mysterious threat has so terrified the planet that everything grinds to a halt. On top of all that, we’d have to experience a thinly veiled metaphor for the Cold War ad nauseum.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Every time my iPhone manages to track my exact location, anticipate what song I want to listen to, or choose a restaurant for me, I fear the eminent rise of Skynet and the fall of the human race in the fiery holocaust known as Judgment Day. Sure, Arnold and Linda Hamilton were able to stop the agent of the machines before he managed to kill the future leader of the resistance as a child, but if they had to repeat that process every day, how long before they would slip up and the machines would win? But really, my ultimate fear is being stuck hanging out with Edward Furlong for eternity. Given that alternative, maybe I would root for the machines.
Day of the Animals
Everybody loves hiking, right? We love to get out and reconnect with nature, see all the fuzzy little woodland critters. Well, what if those fuzzy little woodland critters were conspiring to kill you? William Girdler’s 1977 B movie brings into serious contention the structure of our established food pyramid. While it would be great to be able to hang out with the late, great Leslie Nielsen, the fact that he is a total d-bag in the film is a major drawback. But at least we would be perpetually experiencing a time in which bears are the ultimate rape-deterrent. Seriously, you have to watch this film.
In one 24-hour period, aliens wipe out New York, L.A. and Washington, D.C. While this does offer the advantage of eliminating Congress, Friedberg and Seltzer, and the New York Yankees, I suppose there would be negative aspects as well. I can’t really imagine constantly reliving a time when Bill Pullman was president, Jeff Goldblum was a cable repairman, and Randy Quaid was allowed to operate aircraft. And while that “Today … we celebrate our Independence Day!” speech is inspiring the first 20 times you hear it on cable, it would surely lose its pomp and circumstance after 365 continuous days.