Tag Archives: Jackie Earle Haley

The Set of 400: #61 – My Favorite George Washington Anecdote

Today! Because nothing will make an Englishman shit quicker than the sight of George Washington –

Lincoln (2012)

Directed by Steven Spielberg (x10)

Starring Daniel Day-Lewis (x3), Sally Field (x2), Tommy Lee Jones (x5), David Strathairn (x4), James Spader, Joseph Gordon-Levitt (x2), Hal Holbrook, John Hawkes, Bruce McGill (x2), Tim Blake Nelson (x2), Jackie Earle Haley (x4), Jared Harris, Lee Pace (x2), Peter McRobbie (x3), Michael Stuhlbarg (x2), Gloria Reuben, Walton Goggins (x3), David Oyelowo (x2), Lukas Haas (x2), Dane DeHaan, Bill Camp, Wayne Duvall (x2), Gregory Itzin (x2), Adam Driver (x2), Christopher Evan Welch (x2), S. Epatha Merkerson (x2), Joseph Cross, Boris McGiver

My favorite movie from one of my favorite years, 2012’s Lincoln almost starred Liam Neeson. Wrap your mind around that for a second. For years there were stories about Spielberg trying to mount this epic Abe biopic, with his Schindler’s List star attached, and I always figured that could work. Neeson has that magisterial presence, and what more would you really need to play Lincoln? But now that we’ve seen the greatest living actor in the role, it’s pretty tough to imagine anyone else in the part. Never mind Neeson’s very recent (as of this writing) issues concerning some racist tendencies from his youth (Has this story blown over? Be sure to go look it up), which would’ve made him donning the big stovepipe a bit awkward.

If you know nothing else about me except my 340 favorite movies so far, it’s probably about time I share that I’ve got a thing for U.S. Commanders in Chief. I’m no presidential scholar – I’m too busy watching movies to dedicate the time required – but the wife and I are committed to visiting every president grave site in the country, along with their adjoining museums/libraries/road side monuments if they exist. Lincoln’s Springfield tomb was one of the few we visited before officially starting on this quest, his being the third president grave we saw, following JFK and Taft in Arlington, VA.

It’s pretty grand and glorious in Springfield, IL

Plus it has an equally classy gift shop – the wife seen here

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The Set of 400: #204 – My Favorite Free Corn Dogs Promotion

Today! Because there’s a bear loose in the coliseum! There will be no refunds! Your refund will be escaping this deathtrap with your life!

Semi-Pro (2008)

Directed by Kent Alterman

Starring Will Ferrell (x3), Woody Harrelson (x5), Andre Benjamin, Maura Tierney (x2), Will Arnett, Andrew Daly, David Koechner, Rob Corddry (x3), Andy Richter, Matt Walsh (x5), DeRay Davis, Josh Braaten, Jay Phillips, Peter Cornell, Jackie Earle Haley (x3), Tim Meadows (x2), Patti LaBelle, Ian Roberts (x2), Ed Helms (x3), Jerry Minor, Jason Sudeikis, Kristen Wiig (x3)

The most underrated sports comedy in recent memory, Semi-Pro is basically a beat-for-beat basketball-based remake of #213 Slap Shot. I’ll admit that. Instead of the team on the verge of folding because of hometown financial distress, here it’s that the very real ABA is being acquired by the NBA, bringing the top four of its teams into the big league. Trying to fight their way into this select group is Jackie Moon’s Flint Tropics (the only fictional franchise in the movie), which needs to get their attendance number up to even compete, and that requires some gimmicks.

So, okay, is it the 70% knock-off of Slap Shot that bothers people? Because this is still a really funny movie. Sure, it does have the feeling of two different scripts slammed together into one movie – the wacky, Will Ferrell Jackie plot, along with Woody Harrelson’s over-the-hill former NBA player trying to get his old love life sorted out story. And they don’t mesh together terrible well, but neither is particularly bad. Plus it has that fun ’70s setting and a ton of great comedians filling out the cast – highlights including Will Arnett and Andrew Daly’s broadcast team of Lou Redwood and Dick Pepperfield, Matt Walsh’s ref and source of major abuse Father Pat, Jackie Earle Haley’s burnout winner of the halftime shooting contest Dukes, and Kristen Wiig as the bear handler. Continue reading

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The Set of 400: #239 – My Favorite Mars Sojourn

Today! Because none of you seem to understand. I’m not locked in here with you, you’re locked in here with me!

Watchmen (2009)

Directed by Zack Snyder

Starring Jackie Earle Haley (x2), Patrick Wilson, Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode (x2), Malin Akerman, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Carla Gugino, Matt Frewer, Stephen McHattie, Laura Mennell, Robert Wisden, John Shaw, Danny Woodburn, Rob LaBelle

This movie did not work for everybody. Hell, if it had, they wouldn’t have remade it for TV within a decade (Has that come out yet? Is it any good? It can’t be, right?). But it did have a lot of built-in problems right from the get-go. Sure, the graphic novel is an unquestioned masterpiece, but when reading it, how exactly it could play out in under three hours doesn’t present itself. So massive edits were necessary, some good some bad, plus a wholesale revision to the story’s climax. The ending remains more or less the same, but for some reason people really like that giant goddamn squid. Also – and this cannot be stressed enough – this movie had to overcome the whims and instincts of director Snyder, who at the time had only made Dawn of the Dead in 2004 (which I’m sure is great, but haven’t seen) and 300 (which should’ve probably tipped us off that this wasn’t our guy to handle this or any comic book story).

Seriously, how was this movie a hit?

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The Set of 400: #284 – My Favorite Air Hockey Beatdown

Today! Because we lost 18 to nothing, Buttercrud, and the Athletics are the worst team in the league –

The Bad News Bears (1976)

Directed by Michael Ritchie

Starring Walter Matthau (x2), Tatum O’Neal, Jackie Earle Haley, Vic Morrow (x2), Joyce Van Patten, Ben Piazza, Chris Barnes, Shari Summers (x2), George Wyner (x2)

One of the best cinematic representations of what monstrous little shits children can be, The Bad News Bears nonetheless features a fun-loving group of disparate races, religions, sexes, and general personalities, often at odds across the baseball diamond or in their own dugout, periodically hurling racist and sexist slurs at each other. And, I don’t know, little kids cursing and spouting off like Republicans at white power marches just strikes me as really funny.

That’s the big takeaway, right? Children are awful?

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