Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Underrated '97 - Dan Gorman ""

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Underrated '97 - Dan Gorman

Dan Gorman runs a weekly pop culture and film podcast called SEE YOU NEXT WEDNESDAY and you can check that out here:
He can also be found on Twitter @yckmd_.
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Drive (1997)
DRIVE is a whole bucket-of-fun - with an extra-charming Mark Dacascos who really gets to let loose here, both comedic-wise and action-wise. Drive melds the martial-arts and American-action genres well, and is well-deserving of discovery, since it's oddly under-mentioned.

Kadeem Hardison gets maybe the most high-five worthy moment when he slice.s a dude's arm off (which, at the tie, is carrying a machine gun) and as the severed-arm flips through the air, it shoots a buncha dudes.

Brittany Murphy shows up mid-movie, just as the action-flick hits the required mid-section lull. She does her best with a truly odd character and an over-the-top performance, and gets a number of laughs thanks to it.

Some of the wire-stunts and other set-pieces are truly stunning, and unlike other films it gets bonus points for seeming like everyone is in-on-the-fun - there's a lot of charm to Drive.

And I haven't even mentioned that it's about a prototype-enhanced Dacascos who is able to kick dudes through the air, and jump huge lengths. It's practically a super-hero movie at times - sooo much fun and highly recommended
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Bloodmoon (1997)
Gary Daniels stars in this teriffically underrated action flick as a "Mindhunter" who is tasked to track down a robot-finger-havin' serial killer who has been murdering New York City's top fighters in a bid to be top-dog. It's about as amazing as you might think from that description, plus it features Chuck Jeffreys as his cop-buddy who happens to pull magic tricks out at crime scenes (yes, the never-ending hankerchief-from-sleeve makes an appearance.)

Stuffed to the gills with ridiculousness, but also some damn fine wire-fu adorned action scenes and an anything-goes, freewheeling tone. This was a major discovery to me, thanks to Letterboxd user Carlo.
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Ernest Borgnine on the Bus (1997)
This "documentary" amounts to nothing more than Ernest Borgnine and his son traveling through the Midwest on his forty-foot bus "The Sunbum."

The 'Borg takes you on a tour of his bus before they hit the road, stopping at Dairy Queen for dipped-cones, touring breweries (Borgnine after taking a big sip of the suds: "That's not milk!") and generally just spinning some delightful yarns.

An absolute head-scratcher (in the sense of, wait why did they make this? Who is this for again?) but also one of the most charmingly weird-n-wonderful slices of video-store detritus you'll come by. You've just gotta see it.
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The Relic (1997)
I will go to bat for this movie - and many other Hyams joints, but I'll save that for another day - until I'm blue in the face; unjustly forgotten as a mediocre creature-feature, The Relic wisely keeps its monster in the shadows for optimum suspense, and ratchets up the surprising grue when things jump off the chain.

Couple this with a sneaky peppering of disaster-movie elements (the crowd of people running from the monster becomes almost as deadly in one shocking scene) and you have a recipe for a smashingly entertaining piece of b-movie filmmaking writ-large.
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Good Burger (1997)
This supremely silly 90s Nickelodeon comedy certainly fits in with the anarchic comedies of the time, but - like the secret sauce of the film - it has a certain je ne sais quoi.

Maybe it's the screenplay by Dan Schneider (Better Off Dead's Ricky), maybe it's nostalgia, or maybe it's Ed's lovable dum-dum. Whatever it is that makes Good Burger so memorable to me, head-slapping groaners such as the following certainly help:

Roxanne: Would you like to have dinner tomorrow night?
Ed: I like to have dinner every night.

I mean, c'mon. Plus, George Clinton shows up during a dance sequence featuring "(Not Just) Knee Deep," so there's that too.
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