Music Video Of The Day: Unglued by Big Data (2019, dir by Maggie Levin)

Today’s music video of the day is the latest from Big Data!

With each passing day, Big Data’s style of paranoid artistry becomes more and more relevant.  I mean, just consider what happened this week.  Thousands of people used a Russian-made app to see what they would look like once they were elderly and, in the process, they gave tons of information to …. well, the Russians!

I mean, it’s amazing,  You go on twitter right now and everyone’s like, “OMG, I HATE RUSSIAN BOTS!  Oh, hey, a new app!  Let’s send the Russians all my info!”

Big Data is all about how we’re living now.


Trailer – Top Gun: Maverick

Maverick is back in the skies in Top Gun: Maverick. In the newly released trailer, it looks like Pete Mitchell (Tom Cruise) is still flying after all these years, which explains why he isn’t an Admiral by now. He still has that old motorcycle, though it looks like he rides a newer one and we’re seeing F-18 Hornets in combat, which should be cool. Tomcats are also still in flight, bless the angels.

Not much is known about Top Gun: Maverick save that Christopher McQuarrie (Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation and Mission Impossible: Fallout) has the writing duties here along with a few others. The directing duties are tied to Joseph Kosinski (Tron: Legacy). Kosinski and Cruise also worked together on Oblivion.

Top Gun: Maverick also stars Academy Award Winner Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Lewis Pullman, Ed Harris and Val Kilmer.

The movie will be released in theatres next Summer.


The Final Trailer for IT: Chapter Two

With the 50th Annual San Diego Comic Con in full swing, Warner Bros. is wasting no time in showcasing their wares. Here we have the final trailer for Andy Muschietti’s IT: Chapter Two. The more I see of this, the more I’m amazed by the casting choices. James Ransome (Eddie) and Bill Hader (Richie) really feel like the perfect matches for their roles so far. Granted, the trailer is just a taste of what we’ll see later on, but I’m hopeful.

IT: Chapter Two finds the members of the Loser’s Club returning to Derry, 27 years after their first encounter with Pennywise the Clown (Bill Skarsgard). Will they be able to get past their fears? Can they recreate the magic they had? Will they avoid the deadlights?

It: Chapter Two, also starring Jessica Chastain, James McAvoy, Jay Ryan, Andy Bean, and Isaiah Mustafa, opens in theatres on September 6th.


RIP Pumpsie Green

cracked rear viewer

Most people these days think of Boston (and the Northeast as a whole) as a modern Athens, the standard bearer for progressive, liberal thinking. But it wasn’t always so. The City of Boston in the 1950’s and 60’s was a hotbed of racial tensions, with frequent rioting over such issues as forced busing and integration. While Jackie Robinson was the first black player to break the Major League Baseball color barrier in 1947, the Boston Red Sox (owned by avowed racist Tom Yawkey) didn’t add a player of color until 1959. That player’s name was Elijah “Pumpsie” Green.

Green was born October 27, 1933 in the small town of Boley, Oklahoma. As a youth, he excelled at sports, as did his brother Cornell, who wound up playing 13 seasons as a Defensive Back for the Dallas Cowboys. After playing college ball at Contra Costa, Pumpsie turned pro in 1954, and…

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Twice the Van Damme: Double Impact (1991, directed by Sheldon Lettich)

Twice the Van Damme means double the damme trouble in Double Impact!

In this low-budget action flick, Jean-Claude Van Damme plays twin brothers, Chad and Alex Wagner.  When they were just six months old, their parents were murdered in Hong Kong and the brothers were separated.  Chad grew up to become a goody-goody martial arts instructor in Los Angeles.  Alex grew up to become a part of the Hong Kong underworld.  Under the direction of the parent’s former bodyguard, Uncle Frank (Geoffrey Lewis), the twins are reunited and team up to take down the gangster who killed their parents.

When it comes to second-tier 90s action heroes, Jean-Claude Van Damme was never as good as Dolph Lundgren but he was still a thousand times better than Stephen Seagal.  The secret of Van Damme’s success was that, in real life, he was capable of doing all of the thing that he did in the movies.  Van Damme didn’t need a stunt double or trick editing to look athletic.  It’s easy to laugh at Van Damme’s propensity to do the splits in every film he made but everyone knows that if Stephen Seagal had ever tried to do the same thing, he probably never would have been able to stand back up.

Double Impact was made early in Van Damme’s career, after he had established himself with Bloodsport but before he went mainstream with Timecop.  Van Damme is credited with co-writing the script and it’s the first Van Damme film to feature him playing twins, an idea to which he would return a surprising number of times.  The movie is full of moments between the twins that were designed to make critics and audiences say, “He really can act!”  Unfortunately, at that time, Van Damme really couldn’t act.  Chad smiles like a goof.  Alex smokes a cigar and is an angry drunk.  When Chad fears that his mentor has been murdered, he shouts, “NO!” in a way that will remind you of Rainier Wolfcastle’s reaction to his partner getting gunned down in McBain.  That’s the extent of their characterizations.  It wouldn’t be a problem except that the movie is nearly two hours long and that’s a long time to spend listening to Jean-Claude Van Damme argue with himself.

There are a few action scenes, which is the main reason for watching any Van Damme film other than JCVD, but they’re mostly perfunctory.  The bad guy’s main henchman is played by Bolo Yeung and the fight scenes between him and Van Damme are exiting to watch.  Otherwise, Double Impact is damme forgettable.