Tag Archives: Garry Marshall

The Set of 400: #259 – My Favorite Un-Decapitation

Today! Because she has more lines than I do and she’s a goddamn mute!

Soapdish (1991)

Directed by Michael Hoffman

Starring Sally Field, Kevin Kline, Whoopi Goldberg (x3), Elisabeth Shue (x2), Robert Downey Jr. (x5), Cathy Moriarty, Teri Hatcher, Kathy Najimy, Garry Marshall (x2), Carrie Fisher, Costas Mandylor, Sheila Kelley, Ben Stein (x2), Willie Garson (x4), Leeza Gibbons, John Tesh

Another staple of early ’90s HBO, Soapdish isn’t the sort of film 12-year-old Joe routinely watched in those days, but it is a movie I routinely saw, given that I can still quote nearly the entire film. Like, I must’ve seen this movie multiple dozens of times. As I’ve mentioned before, this is a sub-genre I really gravitate to – movies about entertainment – so what if it’s about soap operas? The cast is incredible – six Oscar nominees, not to mention future Lois Lane Teri Hatcher, once and future Princess Leia Carrie Fisher, and a great TV exec precursor role to his TV exec role on Murphy Brown, former TV exec Garry Marshall.

It’s a show that got crazier as it aged, but Marshall’s Stan was a terrific late addition

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The Set of 400: #334 – My Favorite Craps Meltdown

Today! Because if you pick up that keno card, I’ll kill you –

Lost in America (1985)

Directed by Albert Brooks

Starring Albert Brooks, Julie Hagerty, Garry Marshall, Donald Gibb (x2), Michael Greene, Candy Ann Brown, Maggie Roswell

Albert Brooks has had a terrifically acclaimed career, but the path he’s taken is an odd one. He created taped segments for the first year of Saturday Night Live, had supporting roles in notable films like Taxi Driver and Broadcast News, did legendary voice work in a handful of Simpsons episodes and as Marlin in Finding Nemo/Doryand has always managed to hang around despite largely ignoring his true calling – directing movies, which he’s only done seven times.

My second favorite of those is this abortive road trip family disaster, as his ad exec David abandons corporate life and sets off with his wife to see America and live off their nest egg. This is a movie I didn’t notice until I was older – Brooks’ movies can’t much resonate with the younger set – except for the memorable if confusing VHS cover, appearing frequently in young Joe’s life at your Prime Time Videos and Blockbusters. But it is a hilarious, small film with a wonderful script, and terrific lead work by Brooks and the film’s MVP, Julie Hagerty, as his amenable, frustrated, destructive wife Linda. It’s that all-American fantasy of throwing your job in your boss’s face, storming out, and hitting the road to live the way you want – before the reality of this choice socks you and sends things spiraling apart. That being said, it still seems like a pretty fun life plan, right?

No matter how many times I pitch it, Sarah is not supportive of this life plan

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