Tag Archives: Charlie Sheen

The Set of 400: #65 – My Favorite Heyyyyyy-Batter-Batter-Batter-Batter

Today! Because they think he’s a righteous dude –

 

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)

Directed by John Hughes (x2)

Starring Matthew Broderick (x3), Alan Ruck (x2), Mia Sara, Jeffrey Jones (x4), Jennifer Grey, Lyman Ward, Cindy Pickett, Edie McClurg (x3), Ben Stein (x3), Charlie Sheen (x3), Del Close (x2), Kristy Swanson (x2), Richard Edson (x2), Louie Anderson, Jonathan Schmock

Before moving here, if you’d asked me what movie is most associated with Chicago, I might’ve said The Blues Brothers. Maybe The Untouchables, given people’s endless fascination with the town’s mob history from eighty years ago. But having lived here for over a decade now, I can tell you hands down what’s considered the most Chicago-y movie of all time, by visitors and residents alike, is Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. I know this should’ve been obvious – it’s basically a non-stop travel video for the greatest city on Lake Michigan – but I guess I didn’t think it had a universal appeal to audiences of all ages. Or maybe it’s just that the movie is old enough now that its become a beloved classic, and thus can be enjoyed by all demographics. Either way, there are yearly celebrations and special anniversary events about this movie – last year they recreated Ferris’s bedroom in…a hotel downtown, I want to say? Googling…

The Virgin Hotel, summer of 2018! Oddly, I find this has been done a number of times in various cities, but still

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The Set of 400: #248 – My Favorite Jewel Thief

Today! Because nobody’s looking for a puppeteer in today’s wintry economic climate –

Being John Malkovich (1999)

Directed by Spike Jonze

Starring John Cusack, Cameron Diaz, Catherine Keener (x2), John Malkovich (x2), Orson Bean, Mary Kay Place, Charlie Sheen (x2), Willie Garson (x5), W. Earl Brown (x2), Octavia Spencer (x2)

Featuring the greatest single performance where someone is credited playing himself, Being John Malkovich’s crazy premise could’ve easily overwhelmed the movie. Seriously, it feels like this film was one casting misstep away from Being Charlie Sheen, and who knows how it would’ve played out. Hey, maybe great – maybe that’s all Sheen would’ve needed to re-jumpstart the film career, never do Two and a Half Men, never have catastrophic public meltdowns, and would now be regarded as one of the pillars of the acting community. Instead, he starred in a sitcom on FX for a few years and lost his damn mind. This is all speculation about what could’ve been, of course.

Instead…

By all indications, it was Being John Malkovich the whole way across, and we are better for it as a people. Wildly creative, and surprisingly touching, this movie bends reality to the near breaking point while still grounding it in a believable-ish reality. Finding a door that leads into another person’s head! And making the decision that not only is it a famous actor’s head, but have them gamely play themselves and in such extraordinary fashion as to blur this 4th wall (5th wall?) and create something so indelibly new and unpredictable. Continue reading

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The Set of 400: #276 – My Favorite Veal Piccata

Today! Because you have the whitest white part of the eyes I’ve ever seen. Do you floss?

Hot Shots! (1991)

Directed by Jim Abrahams

Starring Charlie Sheen, Valeria Golino, Jon Cryer, Cary Elwes (x4), Lloyd Bridges, Kevin Dunn, William O’Leary, Kristy Swanson, Bill Irwin (x2), Bruce A. Young, Ryan Stiles, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Heidi Swedberg, Don Lake

Indirectly responsible for foisting Two and a Half Men on the world, I imagine, Hot Shots! is a direct parody of Top Gun, plus a bunch of other movies mocked along the way. Abrahams spun off from his frequent collaborators the Zucker brothers to concoct this largely solid gagfest with Naked Gun/Police Academy writer Pat Proft, and while a little dated today – this movie being the height of Gulf War comedy – it’s still a pretty funny movie, all things considered.

As mentioned earlier, there aren’t a ton of opportunities to see Cary Elwes do zany comedy – despite this being what he does best, outside of smarmy villain roles – so couple that with Airplane! vet Lloyd Bridges, future Veep great Kevin Dunn, clowning genius Bill Irwin, improv maestro Ryan Stiles, and a weirdly suited for this type of comedy Valeria Golino, and Hot Shots! totally keeps the comedy rolling. I’ve mentioned before how franchise films blend together for me from when I was a kid, and Hot Shots! Part Deux is no exception. It’s more a Rambo thing, right? So that makes it a little easier to differentiate.

Yeah, I’d say that’s accurate

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