I do tons of hunting around town here in Portland Oregon and beyond for awesome VHS tapes for my own viewing pleasure and also for my shop Hollywood Babylon. The fun is always running across cool movies, often times I never even knew existed. This is most definitely the case when I ran across a VHS copy of ‘VIBES’ from 1988 starring Cyndi Lauper and Jeff Goldblum!? Yeah, at least for me this was a surprise as I’d never even heard of this one before and the unlikely pairing of Goldblum as “Nick” & 80’s pop icon Lauper as “Sylvia” kinda blew my mind. At first I thought it was simply an 80’s rom com, but upon reading the synopsis on the back I was even more excited to find that Vibes is actually a supernatural adventure flick with light elements of Indiana Jones sprinkled about it’s odd colorful plot.
Talk about a movie that sounds right up my alley? Vibes was indeed a ton of fun and it’s two unlikely leads make it a full on trip down 80’s nostalgia lane. Both Lauper and Goldblum play quirky down on their luck psychics who are hired to head off to Ecuador to find the missing son of a mysterious wealthy fortune hunter. Both seem reluctant to work together even though Sylvia who’s major bad luck with men, seems immediately enamored with Nick who’s character is as over the top Godlbum-esque here as they come. Both use their unique powers to piece together the mystery they become entrenched in, Sylvia speaks with a dead woman named Louise and Nick can see the psychic history of objects from merely by touching them.
Once the two leave the city they quickly realize there’s a supernatural element at play and their employer hasn’t been entirely honest about why they’ve been hired for the job. It’s a total pleasure to see the two leads playing off each other and it’s quite obvious from the get go it’s gonna be physically impossible for Golblum to resist the cute as a button Lauper. Cyndi shines here with her extra thick New York accent and most of all it’s the unlikely pairing of these two icons that really make this one such a treat.
The back of the VHS boasts something of a special fx extravaganza from one of the dudes from Ghostbusters which was sadly a bit misleading. There are a few neat scenes of 80’s fx at play here but ultimately the supernatural spectacle here wasn’t nearly as impressive as I’d hoped for. A few more scenes of paranormal mayhem would have made this one a full on lost 80’s classic. It does have some great sets though and the Ecuador back drop gives this a bit of a Romancing the Stone vibes at times although with less physical adventure actually going on. There’s a great dance sequence between the two as well that’s pretty darn cute as well. The main reason to seek this out is the two leads, it’s an interesting pairing and filled with a ton of fun moments despite it being a full on bonafide box office flop. One of the best parts of the movie is the closing credits song by Cyndi Lauper called “Hole In My Heart” which is one of her best and adds to the pure nostalgia of this little forgotten gem of an 80’s movie.
Wes Anderson has clearly outdone himself again with his new movie The Grand Budapest Hotel. It seems to me that Anderson is getting better with every new movie he releases lately. Moonrise Kingdom topped the list as my fave film from him, however I have to say I think this new entry takes the cake. To a certain degree you know what you’re in store for, something beautiful, funny and a little odd. I’m going as far to say that this much like Moonrise Kingdom is a full on comedy and a damn good one at that.
Great comedies are hard to come by these days and it seems Anderson has really upped the ante here again. It’s really less of an inside joke anymore as The Grand Budapest Hotel is likely to appeal to anyone and i mean that in the best way possible. It’s packed with laugh out loud moments and filled to the brim with amazing characters. Each of them with a cartoony charm, in a way it almost feels like an animated film as the characters are truly larger than life.
It’s also an excellent period piece as the bulk of the story takes place in the 1930’s. As you expect with Anderson it’s filled with rich, vibrant imagery and a fully compelling story. It follows the exploits of Gustave (Ralph Fiennes) the hotel’s concierge and his side kick “Zero”(Tony Revolori) the lobby boy. And what a team these two make.
The pair are truly charming together and Zero’s enthusiasm to serve the hotel’s need to his fullest and impress Gustave bring some hilarious scenarios to the table. Things get quite intriguing quickly Continue reading
It must just be by chance that recently I’ve gotten on a little Ray Bradbury kick. Sadly not in book form, but rather in the way of first, Ray Bradbury Theater which I recently found on dvd! What you never heard of Ray Bradbury Theater? Well it was kinda like Amazing Stories or The Twilight Zone and first came onto TV in 1985 as an HBO series.
If you do a little hunting you can find these all for pretty cheap and they are a pretty fun little late night watch Continue reading