My Favorite Newer Horror Movie Experiences Of 2019

Okay, so I already talked about by favorite older horror movie experiences of last year, so now it’s time for the newbies! I rarely see horror films in the theater, but do try to keep up on the new hotness mainly by listening to Shock Waves and hearing what they’re enjoying on any number of streaming services. Between that, the library and my subscription to Netflix DVD (yup, I’m the one keeping them in business, apparently), I try to stay on top of the genre, but miss a lot. These are the ones I caught!

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Music Musings: “Bohemian Rhapsody” and Me

One of the more influential movies from my childhood has to be Wayne’s World. I know how strange that sounds, but from the day I convinced my grandmother to take me to see it in the theaters back in 1992, that movie and those characters have been ingrained in my psyche. I got the movie on tape and can still recite good chunks of it to this day. I wasn’t the only one. I had friends in high school who dressed up as Wayne and Garth for Halloween and could quote the movie as well as I could. My all time favorite scenes from the movie is still the guys singing Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” in the car with even their drunk friend fill getting in on the action.

There’s the scene if you’re not familiar with it. Anyway, I’m sure I knew the song before seeing the movie–my dad has always been a big fan of rock music which he shared with me growing up–but it was this movie and it’s soundtrack which I still own that really hammered the lyrics and solos into my head. By the age of 9 or 10, I had the whole thing down, just like Wayne, Garth and their friends. Fast forward to about 1998 or 1999, I’m in high school, I’ve listened to a lot more music and still love “Bohemian Rhapsody.” I also have gotten into my high school’s yearly musical. I’m a sophomore and we’re doing Wizard Of Oz. I only tried out because I wanted to be a flying monkey and got the part (we rollerbladed instead of flew, but it was still pretty cool). At some point during the long process of practicing for the show, a few friends and I decided to start playing “Bohemian Rhapsody” to get ourselves psyched. I don’t remember if this started the week the show actually premiered or before that, but it wound up being a nightly thing in the guys’ dressing room. We’d put the Wayne’s World soundtrack in a little boom box, blast it and sing at the top of our lungs. Soon enough, some of the girls came in and it became even more of a thing. I stuck around and did the musicals my Junior and Senior year and we kept singing the song before each show. At one point the director–an intense fellow who seemed to think we were on Broadway at times instead of the St. Francis production of Oklahoma–told us to stop because we were going to kill our voices. I don’t remember if we skipped a night or just turned it down, but the show must go on in a lot of ways. I figured it was something that might continue on for a few more years with the younger kids, the ones who would be seniors in a few years and then die out. Then a year or two ago, I joined a Facebook group that I can’t seem to find now that consisted of SFS musical alums. There were a lot of people on there I didn’t know, but one of the kids who were still in school at the time told me they still sing “Bohemian Rhapsody” before shows. I got a kick out of that. Everyone wants to leave some kind of legacy and I definitely never thought mine would involve a song to get musical kids to get psyched before going on stage, but that’s pretty cool. And we all owe it to Wayne and Garth. I still get pretty pumped when I hear the song, remembering those days and also because it’s an asskicking song front to back.

A Few Thoughts On Glee

I’ve talked about Glee a few times, after the very first episode and then after the next first episode. I’m happy to say that many of my concerns have been taken care of for the most part: the songs sound more “live” than they used to and the non-glee club students don’t seem as assholeish (but that’s just because they’re not featured as prominently, they’re still assholes, we just don’t see it as much). But, I do still have a few problems with the show. I only even mention these problems because I really like the show and want it to be better.

See, I feel like the writers relied on sensational plots and characters early on and are now stuck with them. Mr. Schue’s wife is just awful. The whole fake pregnancy thing just feels like a huge weight around the neck of the whole show. That’s the kind of plot device you throw in, thinking that you need to hook viewers with out-there plot points and now you get stuck with them. Both Em and I hate the wife and want her out of the picture. And that’s not just because we want her to hook up with the ridiculously cute Emma. She’s just a terrible character. One that could only be redeemed by television trickery and nothing that would take place in real life. The sooner the truth comes out about her the better.

Before tonight’s episode, I was feeling the same way about Quinn’s pregnancy, but I feel like it’s more of a real point of drama and conflict now as opposed to something they threw against the wall to see what stuck. I like the drama it’s causing with Quinn, Fynn and Puck, but I still feel like the “I told Fynn it was semen in the hot tub, but Puck’s really the father because we boned, but I’m going to keep lying about it” plot on Quinn’s end is a bit much. The sooner that’s dealt with the better.

Here’s my long term problem with the show, though. Aside from the fact that I feel like Quinn’s baby will be written off with the greatest of ease (please prove me wrong writers), it seems like the show as a whole has a ticking clock hovering above it. And it’s all because these kids are relatively old. In high school terms. I’m guessing most of them are juniors, if not seniors. Now, having been a member of the musicals since my sophomore year in high school I know all too well that you’ve always got an outgoing class and an incoming one, which is a path that Glee could logically take in the coming seasons. Sure it would be hard to get rid of leads, but it would be more realistic (what are the odds that everyone in a particular club is in the same grade?)). Now, they could take the That 70s Show road in which each season consisted of half an actual year (so the eight seasons only spanned four in “real time”). I could buy that. This is more of a “future problem,” though, something that may or may not be a problem. But it’s something I think about because I do really like the show.

I do appreciate how the show is expanding its world. Sue Sylvester has shown a bit of humanity with last week’s episode, though I worry she will be a one trick pony for 99% of the show, we shall see. I also liked seeing Kurt’s dad last episode, Fynn’s mom on tonight’s and Quinn’s even though they were total jerkwads.

And, of course, the music is great. I even called that Fynn would sing “Having My Baby” to Quinn’s parents. Go me. And I was thinking they’d sing “Lean On Me” to Quinn and Fynn at the end, but I called it some other ridiculous name that I can’t quite recall right now. Anyway, the point is that Glee has a lot going for it, a huge following and the support of the music industry right now, so I hope the writers can get themselves out of the corners they’ve painted themselves into in order to make the story as good as the songs and choreography.

There’s Gonna Be a Cocktail Musical!!!!

I say this with absolutely no irony, but I am crazy excited for the Cocktail musical I just read about on /Film. They don’t share the affinity I do for the movie, which I could have sworn I talked about on the blog before, but my search is returning nothing more than brief praise. I love this movie and have since I was a kid. Well before I understood what happened to the Australian guy or why they had their falling out and Tom Cruise moved away, I loved all the drink flipping. In fact, I’ve always wanted to be a bartender and I’m pretty sure it’s because of all the flipping. Love that stuff. This might be the first musical I drag Emily to. I’ve gone with her to see Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Producers and Mary Poppins. Meanwhile Evil Dead, High Fidelity and Toxic Avenger have come and gone since I moved out here. I will not let this one pass me by!

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Season Premier: Glee (kinda)

So, now that just about everything we watch has season finaled, Em and I were pretty excited to see an ad for a new show called Glee on Fox that premiered after American Idol last night. Well, we tuned in, but it turns out it wasn’t really a season premiere.

Well, I guess technically it was because it’s the first episode of a season, but the actual weekly show doesn’t start until the fall. I can understand wanting to get as many of those American Idol viewers as you can, but is it wise to show this thing and then wait for three months? Will people even remember it? I dunno.

I liked a good deal of the show. The premise is this teacher who used to be in the glee club starts it back up or takes it over or something, getting a rag tag group of outcasts together who sing like champs (even though they look different!). He’s also married to a character I hated by her second scene and has Charlie the Waitress from Heroes (hey, I used to like the show before I hated it) who is super cute and obviously a better choice for him as a mate.

Here’s the problem with the show. I’m bored with the above premise of the cool guy being with a crappy girl while there’s a much cooler girl right there. It’s one thing if it’s in a movie where you know things will get better (or not) within an hour or two, but here you have no idea how long it’ll last. Will it be a Niles and Daphne situation? A Ross and Rachel? I’m good on that, thanks.

I also wasn’t very impressed with the background characters, especially the d-bag football players. There’s one dude on the team who’s also in the glee club and, of COURSE, his teammates (who also pick on the other geeks in the glee club) give him a hard time about it. The thing is, these guys just come off as one dimensional, overly-threatening menaces. I’m not sure what it was, but these guys felt like actual bad dudes because they never did anything okay.

Now, I know it’s maybe not fair to judge an entire show based on one hour of television, but that’s what they want us to do right? That’s the whole point of this early, early viewing. That’s another problem, the show should be (and hopefully will be) just a half hour.

All that being said, it did have it’s good parts. I liked all of the main cast, including the glee club weirdos, Jane Lynch and Stephen Tobolowsky. And, of course, the song numbers were pretty sick. I liked the rival team’s rendition of “Rehab” and then, of course, Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” at the end was rad. It was good enough to get me to come back in the fall (if I remember AND it’s not opposite something we regularly watch).

Haha, oh, that reminds me of one other thing that left me scratching my head. They did a “next time on Glee” kind of thing the previews the season or whatever where they completely SPOILED what seems like a major plot point. SPOILER. One of the problems in the pilot is that the main guy’s wife (who, remember, I hate as a character) is pregnant. Well, she’s a shady lady so I figured something was up. Well, if you saw the “next time” thing, you know that she’s not really pregnant, but having a Hysterical pregnancy. I kind of think they threw it in to be like “Hey, he might not be with her forever!” Eh.

OH! It also takes place in Ohio, so it gets points for that. I can’t quite place where they are, though they say that Arkon is south and they’re near Carmel. I think that’s near Cleveland? I dunno, until proven otherwise, I’m gonna say it’s Toledo. Yeah Toledo!