by Jensen Ward
31 days. October 2017. “The Horror! The Horror!”
adjective, Denoting or relating to a genre of films that typically have a science fiction, horror or fantasy theme and were made on a low budget. –Oxford English Dictionary
It’s that time again. A whole month of psychotronic viewing, with one new category for every day in October! Are you up to the challenge?
by Emalie Soderback
When I was growing up, there were two movies I’d watch over and over again on my tiny cube television set with a built in VCR. Two movies, four VHS tapes—James Cameron’s Titanic (1997) and Michael Bay’s Pearl Harbor (2001). These incredible big-budget dramas with their ground-breaking special effects, and casts of young, dashing leading men like Leonardo DiCaprio and Josh Hartnett—not to mention the female leads of equally astounding beauty Kate Winslet and Kate Beckinsale—set against the backdrop of earth-shattering historical tragedies seemed to match up perfectly to my end-of-the-world, overdramatic, tween emotions.
by Randall Cleveland, SketchFest Artistic Director
When people think of “Sketch Comedy Movies”, they’d usually jump right to the (usually mediocre) sketches that get turned into feature-length films like A Night at the Roxbury, The Ladies Man, or Superstar. It’s really pretty rare that someone sets out to make a feature made up of a series of shorter sketches, and a lot of the ones that do exist don’t age well – often they’re fueled by pop culture references and parodies.
But if you’re looking to scratch your sketch comedy itch, here are some great full-length sketch comedy movies that stand the test of time and are sure to make you laugh.
- Monty Python’s And Now For Something Completely Different – This collection of the “Greatest Hits” of the groundbreaking sketch comedy show Monty Python’s Flying Circus is one killer joke after another. It really condenses everything that made Monty Python work into one bizarre, madcap package.
- Mel Brooks’s History of the World Part 1 – This is one of Mel Brooks’s funniest and smartest movies. It’s a series of comedic vignettes surrounding Mel getting in trouble at various times and places throughout history. Learn why it’s good to be the king during the French Revolution, or see the second-most famous representation of the Spanish Inquisition in sketch comedy history.
- Kids in the Hall’s Brain Candy – The beloved Canadian sketch comedy group The Kids in the Hall’s only foray into feature length filmmaking still holds up as a funny, weird, somewhat experimental 90s comedy.
- Wet Hot American Summer – Calling this one “sketch” might be a bit of a stretch, but I think it qualifies. You’ll see a lot of recognizable faces (younger than you remember them!) from Stella, The State, UCB, and SNL in this send-up of summer camp movies.
- Coffee and Cigarettes – This is comedy Jim Jarmusch-style. The depressing arthouse filmmaker made this series of vignettes where semi-fictional versions of the celebrities playing them sit in a café and smoke and talk about life with each other. The humor is dry as hell, but it has some funny moments.
by John S.
Movie Postmortem is a series that reviews certain films which showed promise but misfired, critically and/or commercially, upon release. Join us in our attempt to find out exactly what the hell happened.
THE CASUALTY: Bridget Jones’ Baby
THE CASE HISTORY: England 1996. Helen Fielding publishes a book about a hapless thirtysomething London bachelorette and her misadventures in work and love. Predating the Sex and the City book and cable series, the novel is titled Bridget Jones’ Diary and becomes a popular hit on both sides of the Atlantic. Naturally, a movie adaptation looms.