Let's continue that silly reveal of my "Movies of the Eighties" scrapbook. I'm still hoping to locate the "Movie Stars of the Eighties" companion volume in which I ranked all the actors and actresses of the decade. Wouldn't that be a ROTFL experience? If I can find it I will share, despite the loss of dignity it will surely occasion.
Behold! To your left is the tv guide cover that started it all. I guess it wasn't an actual TV Guide as my personal mythology has always relayed but whatever television magazine thingie was inserted into the Detroit Free Press back in the day. That cover right there started my whole Oscar obsession -- look how worn, damaged and fingered it is. I thumbed through it so many times. What is this naked gold man they call Oscar??? This cover unlocked my latent awards mania. I had seen Tootsie and E.T. (massive family friendly hits both) but it was the center statue that seized my imagination. Soooo shiny.
Shiny shiny sha-na-na-na.
Shiny shiny bad times behind me
Shiny shiny bad times behind me
From there I became more and more movie obsessed. Based on the "everything I've seen" scribblings it looks like I was seeing about 25-40 films a year. Not all of the clipping collages matched the screening lists. I can't recall exactly what dragged me to theaters back then, but Dennis Quaid was a factor.
Do you know the 14 films displayed there? Some of them I barely remember...
The 1988 and 1989 pages are heavily Burtonesque with a late blooming burst of Pfandom by way of The Fabulous Baker Boys. I thought this clipping below was an interesting time capsule: a note about who might play The Joker before Batman (1989) was even filming. It was superhero casting speculation before
It's smudgy but it reads
Although an unknown will be considered for Batman, Jack Nicholson (far right) has been mentioned in connection with the Joker. _____'s personal picks for the role are Ray Liotta (Something Wild, left) or Willem Dafoe (Platoon, center).For the Record: Heath Ledger was 10 years old when Tim Burton's Batman arrived in theaters. Who imagined that Nicholson's Joker would eventually have to stand down?
If you want to see more of this scrapbook, say so in the comments.
But I wanted to wrap up this part 2 peak with this: Lists! Apparently I thought the best "losing sanity" performances of the 80s were:
Jack Nicholson BatmanWith the distance of time, I'd only feel comfortable standing by the bunny boiler. Not that there isn't much to admire in Streep's 1985 performance. But why only four performances? The magic number is five, Nathaniel, hello. Everyone knows that.
Meg Tilly Agnes of God
Glenn Close Fatal Attraction
Meryl Streep Plenty
Stranger still is the "best sequels of the decade" ranking
5. Superman II 4. Star Trek IV 3. Aliens 2. The Empire Strikes Back 1. Return of the JediThat order is ALL wrong: Jedi is a sorry sibling to Empire, The Wrath of Khan crushes other Trek adventures and sentient humans and drooling monsters alike recognize that Aliens is the sequel of the 80s as well as one of the best action flicks ever. I like to think that somewhere inside I knew this and thus felt compelled to scribble A-L-I-E-N-S in large capital expanding letters.
Finally, there's the list of the movies I saw most often, "Again and Again and Again" This one honestly surprised me. I don't remember seeing some of these movies multiple times. I never see things more than twice in the theaters now. Unless the movies are called Moulin Rouge!
(4 times) A Chorus Line, The Empire Strikes Back, Dreamscape, Fire and Ice, The Lost Boys, The Princess Bride, The Secret of My Succe$s, Romancing the Stone, The Karate Kid, The Little Mermaid, Beetle Juice and LadyhawkeYou know what question I am forced to ask now: What movie did you see the most in grade school, junior high and high school?
(5 times) A Room With a View, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Clue, St. Elmo's Fire
(6 times) Batman
(9 times) Return of the Jedi
(10 times) The Breakfast Club