The High Five Podcast Episode 47 – Starz Random Number Generator Queue Clean-Up

Taking cues from Episode 11, I decided to use a random number generator to help me clear out my Starz queue a bit. The results were real weird, but I had fun and hope you do too!

I mentioned a few older posts in the episode including my reviews of Never Back Down and Step Up Revolution.

Finally, here’s the dance video the main crew in Step Up: All In submitted to make the show. It’s fantastic.

As always, you can email me at high5tj at or follow me on Twitter and Instagram. Also feel free to subscribe to my YouTube Channel!

The High Five Podcast Episode 37 – Creepy Disney Plus Delights

On this week’s episode, I comb through the dark corners of Disney Plus — yes there are a few! — to tell you about some fun frights for this Halloween season! Also, I’m glad to see that is still up and running!

You know you want some visual Alice Cooper content. Here’s his performance of “School’s Out” AND a brief interview about actually doing the show from a few years ago.

While looking up Fairuzu Balk’s filmography, I discovered that she played a vampire in a ZZ Top video! It’s a very weird and plodding song, but it’s a fun ride AND, like Bride Of Boogedy, it also features Vincent Schiavelli! I gotta get me a guitar-shaped boat now.

As always, you can email me at high5tj at or follow me on Twitter and Instagram. Also feel free to subscribe to my YouTube Channel!

80s Odyssey: 48 Hours (1982)

48-hrs-movie-poster-1982-1020192886 Eddie Murphy was one of the Saturday Night Live stars whose films my dad introduced to me when I was a kid. I can’t tell you how many times we watched Trading Places or the Beverly Hills Cop movies when they’d come on TV. But, 48 Hours is something of a blind spot for me. I know I’ve seen the movie (or at least parts of it) a few times, but it hasn’t taken up much real estate in my head.

I knew the basics, of course, cop (Nick Nolte) springs con (Eddie Murphy) from jail to help him with an investigation, but somehow it escaped my knowledge that the movie was directed by The Warriors helmer Walter Hill and even stars a few of that movie’s leads, James Remar as killer Albert Ganz and David Patrick Kelly as a street hood coincidentally named Luther.

To get into a bit more detail, Murphy’s character used to run with Remar’s gang. Another criminal helped spring Ganz from prison and the two went on a crime spree that happened to garner attention from the cops. In the process of escaping, two of the cops get killed and Nolte wants revenge. He teams up with Murphy to try and figure out what’s going on and where they can find Remar.

48 Hours is notable because it gave Murphy his first big screen role and success. From there he’d go on to become one of the biggest comedy stars of the 80s. In the film he nails the role of angry convict with a cool head and a smart mouth. I’m a big fan of the scene where he goes in to the country bar acting like a cop and gets to get a lot of his anger out. It’s cathartic.

This movie is also an interesting milestone in movies of this kind. Apparently Hill thought that Murphy’s character here was taken, slightly changed and then used again in the Beverly Hills Cop series. I think there’s an argument that could be made to that point, but how much of that was in the script and how much was just Murphy’s performance is probably impossible to tell at this point. Some of my favorite movies from this era have a similar vibe to this one, mixing some legitimate action or drama elements with some truly great comedic acting (I’m thinking of you Fletch and Fletch Lives). There’s also an interesting transition in scores that you can hear in this film. Anyone who knows BHC, remembers the electronic theme song written by Harold Faltermeyer. 48 Hours has a pretty solid soundtrack of more traditional music, but there is a little bit of the electronic, new wave influence in there that would soon take over.

Now that I think about it, the movie also represents a passing of the torch between two versions of this kind of movie. Nolte’s character is a lot more in line with the vigilante cop films of the 70s like Dirty Harry and Death Wish, while, as I already mentioned, Murphy is the smart-talking, wise cracking cop who can take care of himself. This also allowed for the bigger action guys like Stallone and Schwarzenegger to come in and fill some of those gaps with their far more over-the-top films.

I’m still not sure why 48 Hours wasn’t in heavy rotation either in my house or later on during my heavy rental period during high school, but I’m glad I came around to it so many years later. Experiencing a movie that combines one of my favorite stars from this era with a director I really adore is a nice treat. My only complaint about the movie is that Annette O’Toole is awesome and just doesn’t get enough to do in the film.

After The Pilot Failed To Land, Beverly Hills Cop Ready For Big Screen Takeoff

beverly hills cop

I don’t know about you guys, but I was pretty happy when CBS ordered a Beverly Hills Cop TV pilot that would feature Axel Foley’s kid — played by Brandon T. Jackson — trying to get out from under his dad’s shadows as he made his way as a police officer in the California community. The idea of Murphy returning as Foley was rad enough, but to have the show co-produced by Shawn Ryan (The Shield)? That sounded like a recipe for success. Unfortunately, the project didn’t go to series, so where does that leave Axel and company?

According to Deadline he’s returning to the big screen by way of Paramount. The studio tapped Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec to write the script which is being developed now. Applebaum and  Nemec have some pretty impressive credits to their name including Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol and as writers and producers on Alias and the US version of Life On Mars. They also wrote the new Ninja Turtles movie which no one really knows what to make of at this point.

Anyway, I’m always on board for revisiting my favorite film franchises. If they’re great, you get another entry to watch over and over at your leisure and if it’s bad? Well, just ignore it. I don’t fall in that “one bad entry ruins a franchise” camp. What do you think. Is this a good move?

Preferred Podcasts: WTF with Marc Maron

I don’t think an issue of Entertainment Weekly has been this influential on me in decades. I’ve read the magazine on and off for quite a while and only currently have a subscription right now because of an exchange for airline miles and no other real magazines that I’m interested in. I’m talking about the one from about three week’s back. I don’t have it anymore, but it’s the True Blood cover. Not only did it have an interesting feature on Wet Hot American Summer (much of which seemed lifted from a Jeff Goldsmith podcast featuring David Wain, but what do I know?), but also a story about comedian Marc Maron’s podcast WTF.

Now, I had heard about this podcast a little earlier because Kevin Smith was on it and I listened to that ep, but I didn’t really get the overall idea. See, if you haven’t read the EW article or been lucky enough to jump on the Maron train back when the show first kicked off nearly 200 episodes ago, the idea is that Maron talks to comedians of different ilks but really gets into their psyches, where they came from and what their views on comedy are. It’s the same kind of behind-the-scenes, in-depth stuff that makes me enjoy Jim Shooter’s blog about comic books.

I haven’t listened to a ton of episode, mostly because iTunes only goes back so far, but I have heard him interview Rob Corddy, Henry Rollins, Patton Oswalt, Gallagher, Dave Foley, Stephen Tobolowsky and Dino Stamatopoulos as I write this. I cherrypicked from what’s available on iTunes, mostly going with names that I recognized and then subscribing. I have 23 waiting to be listened to. Since they’re all over an hour, that should take me a while to get caught up.

I’ve been a fan of stand-up comedy for as long as I can remember. My dad had Robin Williams and Eddie Murphy comedy tapes that we would listen to–though I couldn’t tell my mom because there were some pretty serious F-bombs in there. I also happened to grow up in the golden age of Comedy Central back when they actually used to show funny things. ZING! After school I’d watch everything from Benny Hill and Monty Python’s Flying Circus to The Kids In The Hall and the comedians that were all over shows like Premium Blend and what not. I don’t pretend to be some kind of huge comedy fan, but I definitely remember seeing some amazing comedians on there that would go on to be big and lots that weren’t. Maron’s one of them, but his success level should be judged by someone other than me.

What I love about this podcast is how deep Maron goes. I think about the questions I ask on the interviews I do and they’re absolutely nothing compared to this. I get the feeling that other funny people don’t mind letting their guards down around him because he’s one of their own. He’s in the club. Plus, he usually records at his house, so I think that puts folks at ease. All of that mixes for some awesome interviews that get into a lot of personal stuff that these people probably haven’t talked about in public without throwing in a punchline.

I am completely inspired by what Maron has done with this podcast. I wish I had the vehicle to ask people these kinds of questions. The way he has real conversations with people just blows me away. I wish I could come up with a subject, forum or hook for something along these lines and do it on my own, but that idea isn’t there yet for me. I also love how Maron just went for it. He started this podcast on his own, utilizing some friends and connections he had made after years of being a stand-up and now it’s something that comedians seem to be falling over themselves to get on. Hell, there’s a Jonathan Winters episode! I’ve realized just in the past year or so that I actually really like interviewing people, but I want to get more in depth with this stuff. I just need a subject…