Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers Recap

Jamie

Oooooooo, baby. Now we’re starting to cook with fire. Remember when Michael was shot with a machine gun, fell down a well, and was blown up by dynamite? Forget all that. Instead you’ll be treated to a real funny scene where they show him crawling away just before the dynamite goes off so that he can float down river and find his way to a homeless man who, no joke, takes care of him for an entire year! An entire year where Michael is apparently comatose! Who the hell is this dude who lives down by the Haddonfield River (I assume) taking care of random people in comas?! Give me his origin story. This is the level of film we are dealing with here. Not only do they feel the need to show and tell the audience exactly how Michael could have survived the end of the last movie, but they do it like they are aliens that have never encountered human beings and/or normal film narrative. Following Michael’s return for revenge we obviously also get the return (and revenge?) of Loomis and he’s actually disturbingly insane at this point. The rest of the film is psychic connections, The Cult of Thorn, and The Man in Black and at this point I’m sure you’re totally confused. Actually watching the film doesn’t help much. The film is just 90% teeny-boppers getting murdered while dressed up sexy for Halloween and 10% unexplained supernatural nonsense. We end with a cliffhanger where Michael and Jamie are captured from jail by The Man in Black and it really feels like the people making the film were just saying “We dare you. We dare you to try to explain away this shit.” And they were right. The next entry is forced to lean into the real dumb stuff done in this one.

Really the film is building an incredible amount of lore in the most confusing and vague way possible. I appreciate it in the sense that I love dumb lore. I love franchises where a random person can come in and be like “I’m putting my stamp on this,” and no matter how stupid everything is, fans of the franchise have to try to explain all of it. And to think, for six years fans had to try to explain this movie with only the vague hints from this one as guidance. Would love to see what kind of theories came about in that time. The funniest part of all this is that I legit think this might be the second scariest of the films in the first six entries. There are a lot of creepy scenes with Michael skulking about a house without people knowing. He’ll creep silently out of a closet and disappear only to jump out for the kill later. Then they totally submarine it all with the lore. They can’t help it. Gotta make your mark on the series. Patrick? 

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers? More like Even More Contrived: The Film’s Plot is Still Dire … yeah turns out there isn’t much to rhyme with these titles. Loomis is back, jack! And he’s ready to disappear for 30-40 minutes until he saves the day juuuuuuuuust at the end of the film. Let’s go!

  • Yeah, well this one is totally better than the other ones because in those Loomis disappeared for about 30 minutes showing up moments before Michael kills the hero. In this one he does that twice! Take that, all the other Halloween films!
  • Man a mysterious Man in Black? A mysterious Thorn symbol on Michael’s wrist? Can’t wait to learn what that is all about … Oh wait, you never do. Just whole elements left for a sequel which didn’t ultimately happen for six years. Imagine if they never made Halloween 6? Oh to live in such a beautiful world.
  • Full blown mystical psychic connections? Ahhhhh, finally, Halloween is catching up with what Friday the 13th was putting down for years in that bonkers series.
  • All that being said: the film at times is a decent cheesy slasher. I’m thinking of the barn scene. Which incidentally is also the scene which seemed most similar to Friday the 13th.
  • These two Halloween films are so weird. If the notes are to be believed there were half-decent scripts being developed, but then the directors just threw them in the trash in favor of gore and franchise horror tropes. And then all of the stuff from the other scripts ended up being peppered into the next five films.
  • Once again a solid Setting as a Character (Where?) for Haddonfield, IL. And an A+ Holiday Film (When?) for Halloween. This might actually be the Worst Twist (Why?) ever for the inexplicable non-twist of actually telling us anything about Thorn and the Man in Black!
  • This is a BMT film through and through, or at least required viewing for Halloween 6.

Once again, it feels like there isn’t a whole lot to say about Halloween 4 and 5. They are an odd turn in the franchise where Carpenter was half-pushed out of the production and people who seemingly didn’t care much for the established lore (or even really the fundamental idea of the franchise) took over. And it is why against all odds, it is the worst franchise of the big three … although I haven’t seen Resurrection. There is an outside shot that saves it to some degree since it looks truly b-b-b-b-b-b-bonkers.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers Quiz

Oh man. So last year my uncle tried to kill me. This year, I totes have a real bad psychic connection with him! Naturally this results in me “losing time” and I can’t remember a thing. Do you remember what happened in Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers?

Pop Quiz Hot Shot!

1) One year later Michael awakens, the psychic connection between him and Jamie in full force. Where was Michael for the year he was missing?

2) We also see a symbol on Michael’s wrist, and we see glimpses of a mysterious Man in Black. What symbol, what does it mean, and who is the Man in Black?

3) Throughout the film we see the psychic connection at work. What does she psychically witness via the connection?

4) The climax of the film occurs at the farm where all of the teenagers are having a party. Lucky for Tina, Jamie shows up to distract Miachel. Ultimately how does Jamie escape?

5) What is the ultimate plan to kill Michael?

Bonus Question: You thought we left it on a cliffhanger? Then you must not have seen the mid-credits scene where they showed just where the Man in Black took Michael. Where?

Answers

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers Preview

Mud splashes in Young Jamie’s face and Jamie and Patrick fist bump and laugh as they watch the dirt mingle with his tears. The youngsters hopped on their own motorbikes in an attempt to battle their older counterparts’ sick moves. Alas, without the years of professional dance under their belts they couldn’t keep up. “Who… who are you guys?” asks Young Patrick, sniffling sadly at his own lack of motorbike skillz. Patrick throws up his hands. The youngsters shouldn’t worry about who they are. “The short and sweet of it is that we are who you could become if you learn the three R’s: reading, writing, and total radness.” Boom. A look of wonder and self-reflection cross the faces of the younger versions of themselves. They predator high five and vow to read, write, and be super rad by being kind and inclusive to others. Boy, that was easy. Jamie and Patrick nod at each other and prepare to head back to the time machine. They were certain this would take at least eight or nine short adventures to achieve their goal. “Hey wait,” the youngsters say, “Aren’t you going to stick around for dinner?” Patrick is about to explain that they don’t make it a habit to dine with children because they are adults and kids are boring when Young Jamie chimes in, “Yeah, and then afterwards is trick-or-treating!” Jamie and Patrick look at each other in shock, a shared feeling about this moment flooding back to them. They may have turned their lives around with their rad tricks and sage advice, but something about Young Jamie’s words make them think they have one more thing left to do. Halloween, late 90’s, tricks and/or treats… something monstrous is on the horizon. That’s right! We’re heading on through another horror franchise and boooooyyyyy howdy do I love franchises. Halloween might be the most critically disappointing of the major franchises. Started at the highest of highs and then really tanked starting with Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers. And that’s where we start and pick up a bonus in Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers. Both under 90 minutes. Let’s go!

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989) – BMeTric: 60.3; Notability: 26

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 1.2%; Notability: top 17.6%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 6.7%; Higher BMeT: Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan, A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child; Higher Notability: Tango & Cash, Troop Beverly Hills, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child, See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Fletch Lives, Harlem Nights, Leviathan, Pink Cadillac, Family Business, Lock Up, Millennium, Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Three Fugitives, Dead Bang, Renegades, Let It Ride, Slaves of New York, The Karate Kid Part III, Who’s Harry Crumb?, and 24 more; Lower RT: Dream a Little Dream, Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Kinjite: Forbidden Subjects, The Horror Show, The Toxic Avenger Part II, Stepfather II: Make Room for Daddy, Night Game, Wired, Wild Orchid, DeepStar Six, No Holds Barred, Rooftops, She’s Out of Control, Winter People, Millennium, Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan; Notes: Huh … now that I look at both of these plots together, both of the ratings tick down at the same time. Much have been a purge of fake / suspicious votes or something. Maybe some misguided marketing attempt for the new film? Maybe a backlash to the new film? Maybe robots running wild? Who knows. This rating is more like it though, we’ve seen all of the other higher BMeT films as well.

Leonard Maltin – 1.5 stars –  Slightly more plot than before but still just a sequential slaughter of teenagers as Michael Myers (Shanks) again sets out to kill his young niece (Harris). Routine and plodding, with too many endings and unnecessary setup for a sequel.

(Interesting. There is a sequel. But from what I remember the sequel is barely connected to this film. Doesn’t it jump forward a bunch of years to the child of the kid in this one? I honestly can’t remember the setup now that I think about it.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j37xXYWN7rc/

(Hate the beginning with the “help me, help me.” Also they weren’t ready, and he’s not unmasked. What a bizarre ad campaign!)

DirectorsDominique Othenin-Girard – ( Known For: Beyond Desire; After Darkness; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: From Switzerland. Evidently attempted to make a transition to Hollywood in the late-80s, but is more well known on the European indie scene.)

WritersJohn Carpenter – ( Known For: Halloween Kills; They Live; Halloween; Escape from New York; Halloween; The Fog; Escape from L.A.; Prince of Darkness; Halloween H20: 20 Years Later; Assault on Precinct 13; Assault on Precinct 13; Eyes of Laura Mars; Dark Star; Black Moon Rising; Future BMT: Halloween; Lockout; Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers; Halloween: Resurrection; BMT: Halloween II; Ghosts of Mars; Halloween III: Season of the Witch; The Fog; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Still kicking around Hollywood, although he hasn’t actually written a film since 2001’s Ghosts of Mars. He likes to make his own synth-heavy soundtracks.)

Debra Hill – ( Known For: Halloween Kills; Halloween; Halloween; The Fog; Escape from L.A.; Halloween H20: 20 Years Later; Future BMT: Halloween; Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers; Halloween: Resurrection; BMT: Halloween II; The Fog; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Died in 2005, she was well known as the frequent collaborator and producer with John Carpenter on his most well known films.)

Michael Jacobs – ( Known For: Certain Fury; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Hasn’t written anything since the late-80s … that is until the upcoming documentary about the surveillance state in the United States? Yeah, that’s in post-production.)

Dominique Othenin-Girard – ( Known For: After Darkness; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Was educated in London and has directed across the globe, although most well known for his work in Switzerland.)

Shem Bitterman – ( Known For: The Job; Out of the Rain; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Trained as an actor, he also produces plays which appears to be what he is most famous for.)

ActorsDonald Pleasence – ( Known For: The Eagle Has Landed; The Great Escape; Halloween; Escape from New York; You Only Live Twice; The Greatest Story Ever Told; Phenomena; THX 1138; Fantastic Voyage; Prince of Darkness; Soldier Blue; Escape to Witch Mountain; Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band; Wake in Fright; The Last Tycoon; Dracula; Alone in the Dark; Malachi’s Cove; The Hallelujah Trail; Watch Out, We’re Mad; Future BMT: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers; BMT: Halloween II; Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Started acting in the 50s, oddly in television films. Obviously became most well known for his role as Dr. Loomis in the Halloween films.)

Danielle Harris – ( Known For: Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood; Free Willy; The Last Boy Scout; City Slickers; The Town That Dreaded Sundown; Stake Land; Hatchet II; See No Evil 2; Victor Crowley; Hatchet III; The Wild Thornberrys; The Victim; Blood Night: The Legend of Mary Hatchet; Camp Cold Brook; Chromeskull: Laid to Rest 2; Shiver; Havenhurst; Poor White Trash; Super Capers: The Origins of Ed and the Missing Bullion; Left for Dead; Future BMT: Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead; Halloween; Marked for Death; Halloween II; Rugrats Go Wild; BMT: Urban Legend; Daylight; Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Still working, including in shows like Creepshow true to her horror past.)

Ellie Cornell – ( Known For: Married to the Mob; The Specials; Room 6; Free Enterprise; All Souls Day: Dia de los Muertos; The Thirst; Future BMT: House of the Dead; BMT: Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Was supposed to be in A League of Their Own but had to drop out when she became pregnant.)

Budget/Gross – $5,000,000 / Domestic: $11,642,254 (Worldwide: $11,642,254)

(Just going down and down and down. It isn’t a surprise they scrapped whatever plans they originally had for the sequel and only finally made it six years later. What a disastrous franchise performance.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 12% (3/25): Halloween 5: The Revenge Of Michael Myers finds the series embracing crude slasher conventions with pedestrian scares, disposable characters, and aimless plotting.

(Spoiler alert: it always did. That was the issue. The issue was they created the best original film of the bunch and then had nowhere to go but the unstoppable killer / horrible lore route. Even the second one was a pretty nonsensical rehash of the original’s ideas.)

Reviewer Highlight: A prime example of the principle of diminishing reruns. – Richard Harrington, Washington Post

Poster – Sklogoween 5: The Revenge of Slithers the Friendly Snake

(I like this one a little better than #4. It’s a little more artistic with the knife and the girl and thankfully they made the mask a little smaller instead of weirdly huge. Still not great. C)

Tagline(s) – Michael Lives, And This Time They’re Ready! (C+)

(Yeah, OK. I can get with this one at least. This time they’re ready… sure… I mean, it’s not true, but there’s no law against a tagline being wrong, right? RIGHT?! THAT’S NOT A LAW, RIGHT?!)

Keyword(s) – killing-spree

Top 10: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011), Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021), Antlers (2021), The Dark Knight (2008), Scream (1996), Malignant (2021), Deadpool 2 (2018), Goodfellas (1990), Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (2019), The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Future BMT: 64.7 The Crow: City of Angels (1996), 62.7 The Hills Have Eyes 2 (2007), 61.0 When a Stranger Calls (2006), 54.4 Eye of the Beholder (1999), 45.9 Jeepers Creepers 2 (2003), 41.5 Hell Fest (2018), 41.1 The Purge (2013), 40.5 Hollow Man (2000), 40.2 The Forsaken (2001), 39.9 Ghost in the Machine (1993)

BMT: London Has Fallen (2016), Conan the Barbarian (2011), House of Wax (2005), Queen of the Damned (2002), Red Riding Hood (2011), The Lawnmower Man (1992), Friday the 13th Part III (1982), Species II (1998), Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984), Dracula 2000 (2000), Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993), Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989), Vampire in Brooklyn (1995)

Matches: Halloween (2018), Friday the 13th Part III (1982), Idle Hands (1999), Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989), Christmas Evil (1980), Silent Rage (1982), Meeting Evil (2012), Who’s Watching Oliver (2017), Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, Part 2 (1996), Dahmer vs. Gacy (2010), Heavy Mental: A Rock-n-Roll Blood Bath (2009)

(I should have just done Halloween again. Let’s see though, When a Stranger Calls is definitely one of those films we should have watched six years ago and still haven’t. Same goes for Hollow Man, which is a real weird film.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 15) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Donald Pleasence is No. 1 billed in Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers and No. 2 billed in Halloween II, which also stars Jamie Lee Curtis (No. 1 billed) who is in Christmas with the Kranks (No. 2 billed) which also stars Tim Allen (No. 1 billed) who is in Jungle 2 Jungle (No. 1 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 6 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (1 + 2) + (1 + 2) + (1 + 1) + (6 + 1) = 15. There is no shorter path at the moment.

Notes – After filming for two weeks, Donald Pleasence gave his much bigger trailer to Danielle Harris once he left set. Harris’s mother had been complaining about the small size of her daughter’s trailer and Pleasence decided that she should have his.

Despite the subtitle “The Revenge of Michael Myers” which appears on all movie covers and posters, it does not appear in the actual film. It only says “Halloween 5” in the opening credits.

Lowest grossing film in the entire series.

Don Shanks was originally set to wear the same mask that George P. Wilbur had worn in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988) in order to retain consistency between the movies. The mask did not fit Shanks, so a new one was made.

KNB Effects had designed grotesque facial makeup for Michael Myers’ unmasking toward the end of the film. The producers told them to do so as an option, either showing Michael’s badly scarred face or keep it in the dark. They went for the latter.

The old hermit from the opening scene was originally scripted as a younger man named “Dr. Death” who had a fascination with the occult. His shack was supposed to be filled with ancient runes and tablets, and he attempted to bring Michael back to life after finding him. This scene was filmed, and can be seen in Inside ‘Halloween 5’ (2000).

The film’s first screenplay, which was written by Shem Bitterman, featured Jamie Lloyd and Michael Myers as dual antagonists, with a now-teenage Jamie going on a killing spree of her own, Myers attempting to kill her because she was unwittingly interfering with his own spree, and Rachel being caught in the middle. Executive producer Moustapha Akkad disliked the screenplay, feeling it felt more like a parody of the Halloween series than an actual entry in it, and also because he had already promised Danielle Harris that she would be allowed to return as Jamie, and did not think that the 12-year-old Harris would be credible as a serial killer. As a result, the screenplay was rewritten essentially from scratch by Michael Jacobs and director Dominique Othenin-Girard, though Bitterman remained credited for contractual reasons.

Donald Pleasence was very vocal about his dissatisfaction with the story and with the way director Dominique Othenin – Girard was trying to get him to play Dr Loomis as totally heavy and overbearing. Pleasence also felt that the success and the shock ending of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988) was not being capitalized on.

In the script, Rachel had Tina’s role, and Tina had Rachel’s, with a vast change in character for Rachel. Also the script had a scene in the Myers’ house that had The Shape fall through the floor into a cage in the basement, and the end had Michael escaping with Sheriff Meeker finding an empty cell, and other drafts had Meeker dying.

Footage was added to the beginning of the movie (from that previously used near the ending of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers) to show that Michael had actually fallen down a nearby mineshaft rather than just being “swallowed by the ground.”

The film had been fighting an X rating with the violence, blood, and gore. Some scenes were trimmed down to keep it rated R, including a shot of Mike quivering on the ground after Michael stabs him in the head with a hand rake, a shot of glass embedded in Officer Eddy’s face after Michael punches through the windshield, and Billy’s leg being hit by the Camaro, the scythe that kills Samantha was originally supposed to go through her forehead.

Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach Recap

Jamie

Police Academy’s back, Jack! And boy are they ready for some fun in the sun. When Cmdt. Lassard is the honored guest at the big Miami police convention, the gang is invited along. But when they inadvertently get in the way of some diamond smugglers, things get hairy. Can they stop the burglars before it’s too late? Find out in… Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach.

How?! I think I just kinda summarized it. Cmdt. Lassard is wildly popular at this point, thanks to the success of his academy and his adoring pupils. But Capt. Harris (boooo) finds a law on the books that suggests Lassard is past the age for required retirement (double booo). But no before he gets honored with the Police Officer of the Decade (yay). He insists that his best officers come along (minus the Gutes) and so they are ready to live it up in Miami Beach. Hijinks ensue as Lassard inadvertently picks up a bag of stolen diamonds from a gang of burglars. Uh oh! Arriving in Miami they meet Nick, Lassard’s nephew and a definite Gutes type character, and partake in all kinds of beach/police convention fun. Oh and Harris totally embarrassing himself like a bozo, naturally. Anyway, the jewel thieves try all kinds of ways to get the diamonds back, but with their necks on the line they eventually resort to kidnapping Lassard, who mistakes it as the annual police procedure demonstration. Lassard totally charms the thieves, who start to regret their kidnapping ways, and even helps them acquire a helicopter to get them to the everglades where they are meant to hand off the diamonds. Fortunately our gang is there and they jump on some fan boats and totally take out all the baddies. Due to his heroics Lassard is allowed to stay on as Commandant and Hightower is promoted. THE END.

Why?! The films certainly fluctuate between entries that are more like regular films (having some gang the police must take out or something like that) and then those that are more just things happening around the academy. This is certainly the latter. This mostly involves the impending retirement of Lassard and everyone celebrating him in Miami. The diamond plot is really tangential to all this, but creates enough drama to give us the classic chase/fight climax we know and love from Police Academy.

Who?! The Producer of the film makes a few uncredited appearances in the film. Here he shows up as a homeless man. IMDb also lists Jerry O’Connell as having appeared as a kid on the beach… not sure I believe that. That feels very much like someone saw a kid that looked like Jerry O’Connell in the beach scene and added him to IMDb.

What?! I would dare to say that this is likely the best MacGuffin of the series in the stolen diamonds. I wonder if there is a reverse correlation between strength of plot and strength of MacGuffin. This really, really needed that MacGuffin to get the tissue paper thin plot from Point A to Point Miami Beach.

Where?! This whole series has been a disaster in terms of settings since they have always purposefully set it in an anonymous US city. Not so fast, says Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach. May as well call it Assignment A+ Setting Alert cause that’s what we got on our hands.

When?! Ah well, it was fun while it lasted. Who knows when any of these things are set. I guess I could see when the national police convention is… oh, now I guess. Like literally starting as I type this. That’s a weird coincidence. So there you have it. This is set in early September. Nailed it. F.

This is probably the closest the series came to dropping the pretense of plot in favor of people tripping over golf balls and Capt. Harris being lit on fire and stuff. If this was the first in the series I probably would have been like “WTF, mate? Put more shrimp on the barbie,” but this represents exactly why I like watching franchises so much. You get so deep into Police Academy that you just let it wash over you and wait for Winslow to pull out his problematic kung fu impression for the third straight movie. They clearly got to the point where they had so many characters and repeat gags that they could pretty much craft an entire film from just that. Is it good? Is it bad? Is it BMT? I’m not sure what it is really… it just exists. It’s kind of crazy that it does. Patrick?  

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! The whole gang is back. We’ve got Tackleberry! We’ve got Hightower! We’ve got … wait … uh oh, where’s Mahoney? Uh, this ain’t good. Let’s go!

P’s View on the Preview – I don’t think I realized until we got to these last three films in the series just how much cred the series as a whole has. These last three films all have a BMeTric over 70. They all have a 0% Rotten Tomatoes score. And they all got BOMBs from Leonard Maltin. That is mind-bending. What it must have been like to actually experience the six straight years of Police Academy films coming out … it must have been like some sick joke. What were my expectations? I think for the fifth one I expected it to be Police Academy in Miami and thus have a ton of bad Miami jokes and not much else. These films really aren’t that complicated.

The Good – Huh, maybe some bits of the ending where Lassard thinks the whole thing is just a simulation and so he’s getting along with the mafia guys? That was faintly amusing. The few times where you could see Lassard physically press down on a fake golf club to deploy a dumb golf ball goof. Wait … do I just like Commandant Lassard? Best Bit: Commandant Lassard I guess, it is kind of the only amusing thing in the film.

The Bad – I mean … is this a movie? I swear to god there was a 30 minute stretch in the middle of the film where they just roll out the greatest hits of Police Academy’s past but in Miami. I affectionately refer to this as: Hightower smashes, Hicks yells, Tackleberry shoots, and Jones does a racist impression of a Japanese person. Usually there would also be a “Mahoney sexually assaults”, but he wasn’t in this film, that part was instead given to the new character Nick Lassard (and assaults he does!). Anyways, the film basically doesn’t have a plot. I can describe it in a sentence: Lassard is retiring and so is given an award in Miami where he accidentally steals a diamond from the mafia, nonsense ensues. Fatal Flaw: Written on a napkin during the Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol premiere afterparty.

The BMT – At a point while contemplating the Police Academy franchise I transcended the plane of existence and saw it all. It must be the quintessential bad comedy franchise. Even the progression is cliche: (1) Initial blockbuster, (2) on the streetz, (3) back to the academy, (4) new blood, (5) different city, (6)???, (7) foreign country. Only six is an anomaly, but we’ll get to that in that recap. There is something very pure about the fact that they released the first six films in six years. That will never ever be replicated again. Did it meet my expectations? Yeah. In a way it exceeded them, because watching a few in a short period of time really allows you to see just how odd the whole endeavor was.

Roast-radamus – Obviously a great A+ Setting (Where?) for Miami, which snuck into the title. And a really solid MacGuffin (Why?) for the stolen diamonds that Lassard accidentally gets ahold of and the bad guys chase throughout the film. Definitely closest to BMT, you can’t deny the franchise is so bizarre as to be amusing.

Sequel, Prequel, Remake – Uh oh … how do you do a sequel or prequel to a franchise with seven entries. I guess here I’ll think through the Remake since the eighth film only makes sense within the context of reviewing the sixth and seventh. I have to imagine you could remake Police Academy by making it like 21 Jump Street … actually, that’s the answer right? You make it the third 21 Jump Street film! Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, and Ice Cube are put in charge of the Police Academy in their city because they think there is a drug ring operating out of it. Unfortunately, since Hill and Tatum are now famous cops in the Jump Street crew, they can’t go undercover, but instead are installed as teachers. Inside, a rag tag set of recruits tagged as “unacceptable” (Jones, Hicks, Hightower, and Mahoney) are their eyes and ears on the ground. All the while they are fighting the nefarious Lieutenant Harris who is trying to oust an increasingly annoyed Ice Cube (who is undercover as Commandant Lassard, the head of the Police Academy). I dare say? Does it work? 23 Jump Street: Police Academy. I think “fans” of the franchise would be angry, but that is maybe the best option for an actual Police Academy “remake” possible.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach Quiz

Oh man, so I was supposed to go to Miami for an award ceremony for my best friend / commandant, and wouldn’t you know it? I bumped into a mafiosi and got bopped right on the head! Now I can’t remember a thing. Do you remember what happened in Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach?

Pop Quiz Hot Shot!

1) In the beginning of the film Commandant Lassard is going to be forced to retire. Why?

2) Smash cut to Miami! And some bad dude robbers and … well they’re robbing! A museum specifically. What do they steal, and how do they later lose their bounty?

3) Time for some real trivia. We see the police officers participate in three sports while chilling in Miami Beach. What are they?

4) Remember the bag switcheroo? Well the diamonds aren’t just sitting out in the open. They are hidden somehow within the bag as well. How are they hidden?

5) What is the bad guy’s plan to get away, and why do the recruits decide to rescue Lassard in the end?

Bonus Question: Where do they say Mahoney was during all of this?

Answers

Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach Preview

Having jacked in to hack jack port, Patrick swims through cyberspace like a beautiful otter. “Have you done this before?” asks Kyle, struggling to figure out the physics of this strange new world. “Yeah,” starts Patrick, remembering back to Rich and Po3: Dark Web 3D, “kinda… when Jamie and I were Rich and Poe,” he continues but stops and shrugs. It’s all pretty confusing at this point. Their task, on the other hand, should be pretty simple, just find the trash folder (probably) and hack the planet and get Kyle’s website approved as an official reviewer. But as they look around they suddenly hear a booming voice, “Bad Movie Twin, where is your stupider half? Or are you the stupid one, I always forget.” A bead of sweat forms on Patrick’s forehead. I can’t be. “What is it?” asks Kyle, eyes wide. “Gruber,” Patrick says in a whisper as Gruber’s laughter begins to echo through cyberspace. Patrick clenches his eyes closed. “It can’t be. He’s not real. He was never real.” He lets out a bellow and when he opens his eyes he finds himself in a police station. On his chest is a name tag, “Rich.” Kyle is pale with fear and jumps when a man angrily screams for Rich and Gruber to get the hell in his office. Kyle holds up his own name tag, “Gruber,” and Patrick’s mouth runs dry. “It’s just a simulation, playing on my fears” he reassures Kyle (but mostly himself), “we just have to break the mainframe and everything will be OK.” When they get to his office, the Captain throws a couple of pieces of paper at them. Airline tickets… to Party Town, USA? The captain scowls, “The city’s under siege… and the Vice President has been taken hostage.” That’s right! We are doing double duty this week by watching not one, but three Police Academy films! We are officially finishing the series with Police Academy’s 5, 6, and 7, all three of which got a BOMB rating from Leonard and the last of which (Mission to Moscow) failed to make it to a wide theatrical release. It is perfection for the Bring a Friend entry in the cycle. Let’s go!

Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach (1988) – BMeTric: 72.5; Notability: 38

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 0.8%; Notability: top 6.4%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 0.0%; Higher BMeT: Mac and Me, Caddyshack II; Higher Notability: Action Jackson, Sunset, High Spirits, Big Top Pee-wee, Caddyshack II, My Stepmother Is an Alien, Moving, Cocoon: The Return, The Couch Trip, Vibes, License to Drive, Arthur 2: On the Rocks, Hot to Trot, Cocktail, Mac and Me, The Seventh Sign; Notes: The cred on these films are off the hook and only get better and better as the series goes along. We’ve seen the top three BMeTric for 1988. BMeTrics of 70+ are incredibly rare. There are only 184 out of over 2000 qualified films, so less than 10%. Amazingly we’ve seen around 65% of those so far. We legitimately could finish those off in like five years, twelve a year (two a cycle) … easy.

Leonard Maltin – BOMB –  Gaynes is in Miami to receive an award before his mandatory retirement; arch-rival Bailey comes along to gum up the works. Fourth attempt to improve on imperfection is no charm; what can you say about a sequel that Steve Guttenberg won’t even appear in.

(Hey hey hey … Guttenberg for some reason claims he regrets that. I don’t really see why. Also two semi-colons? You know me well Leonard.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKEspwO4vHA/

(Wow, this is quite the 80s comedy spot. Wow they put the fart joke directly into the trailer … I guess you have the lead with your funniest joke (ba-dum-ch). The trailer is just “these zany character you love are doing all the same things you love but in Miami.” I mean … fair.)

DirectorsAlan Myerson – (Known For: Private Lessons; Steelyard Blues; BMT: Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Notes: Scottish. Was a huuuuuge television director throughout the 90s. Ended up getting nominated for an Emmy for directing the Larry Sanders Show.)

WritersNeal Israel – (Known For: Real Genius; Bachelor Party; Police Academy 3: Back in Training; Police Academy: Mission to Moscow; Moving Violations; Americathon; Tunnel Vision; Future BMT: Look Who’s Talking Too; BMT: Police Academy; Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Police Academy 6: City Under Siege; Notes: Just has a character credit here. Was a big director as well, directing such classics as Surf Ninjas.)

Pat Proft – (Known For: Real Genius; The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!; Hot Shots!; Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult; Bachelor Party; Hot Shots! Part Deux; Police Academy 3: Back in Training; The Naked Gun 2½: The Smell of Fear; Police Academy: Mission to Moscow; Moving Violations; Brain Donors; Lucky Stiff; Future BMT: Scary Movie 3; Scary Movie 4; Wrongfully Accused; Mr. Magoo; High School High; BMT: Police Academy; Scary Movie 5; Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Police Academy 6: City Under Siege; Notes: Was nominated for an Emmy for the variety special Van Dyke and Company. He worked a ton with the Scary Movie guys (including the last three movies in that series).)

Stephen Curwick – (BMT: Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Police Academy 6: City Under Siege; Notes: Claims that he wrote a video game called Bad TV in the 2010s, but it is hard to search for due to the name.)

David Sheffield and Barry W. Blaustein – (Known For: Coming 2 America; Coming to America; Police Academy 3: Back in Training; The Nutty Professor; Boomerang; Future BMT: Nutty Professor II: The Klumps; The Honeymooners; BMT: Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Notes: Only wrote the second. I guess the series is interesting since they added characters throughout and so a ton of people get “character” credits.)

Gene Quintano – (Known For: Police Academy 3: Back in Training; Sudden Death; Allan Quatermain and the Lost City of Gold; Making the Grade; Funky Monkey; Comin’ at Ya!; El tesoro de las cuatro coronas; Future BMT: Loaded Weapon 1; King Solomon’s Mines; Operation Dumbo Drop; BMT: Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; The Musketeer; Notes: Here’s the main guy for the third and fourth films. He directed Loaded Weapon 1.)

ActorsBubba Smith – (Known For: Police Academy 3: Back in Training; Gremlins 2: The New Batch; Black Moon Rising; The Silence of the Hams; The Naked Truth; Full Clip; Down ‘n Dirty; The Wild Pair; Future BMT: Stroker Ace; BMT: Police Academy; Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Police Academy 6: City Under Siege; Notes: Played in the NFL prior to his acting career. He believed that Superbowl III was rigged.)

David Graf – (Known For: The Brady Bunch Movie; Police Academy 3: Back in Training; Police Academy: Mission to Moscow; Guarding Tess; Irreconcilable Differences; Fist of Legend; Citizen Ruth; Georgia’s Friends; Suture; Love at Stake; The Enforcer; American Kickboxer 2; Future BMT: Rules of Engagement; BMT: Police Academy; Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Police Academy 6: City Under Siege; Notes: In interviews he talked about how he was struggling financially when he got the part in the first film, and so he never refused to appear in any of the subsequent films.)

Michael Winslow – (Known For: Spaceballs; Gremlins; Police Academy 3: Back in Training; Police Academy: Mission to Moscow; Nice Dreams; Cheech and Chong’s Next Movie; Grandview, U.S.A.; The Great Buck Howard; Killing Hasselhoff; Starchaser: The Legend of Orin; Tag: The Assassination Game; Alphabet City; Think Big; The Trumpet of the Swan; Lovelines; Gingerclown; Robodoc; Far Out Man; Going Under; Lenny the Wonder Dog; BMT: Police Academy; Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol; Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment; Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach; Police Academy 6: City Under Siege; Notes: Still performs standup and has a multitude of apps which emit Winslow-produced sound effects.)

Budget/Gross – $14 million / Domestic: $19,510,371 (Worldwide: $19,510,371)

(This isn’t so bad. I could definitely see why they thought they just needed to being it back to “nameless city” and allow the gang to hit the streetz again to get the money rolling in … they were wrong, but I could see why they may have thought that.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 0% (0/8)

(Consensus time: The usual, except now it reeks of desperation, resorting to fart jokes with a neon-pink Miami background.)

Reviewer Highlight: Miami field trip only brings a pastel backdrop to the insipid infighting of the boobs in blue. – Variety Staff

Poster – Cop School: Destination: Tokyo

(Still got it, baby! This style of poster never really went out of style. Look at the details. It’s really a work of art. Makes me want to find out who drew it. In some respects it doesn’t totally work as a poster (color scheme, all the white space), but it’s hard for me not to like it. B.)

Tagline(s) – Hold everything! The cadets are dropping in on Miami Beach for an all new adventure. (F)

(No.)

Keyword(s) – police-academy

Top 10: The Departed (2006), 21 Jump Street (2012), Police Academy (1984), The Snowman (2017), CHIPS (2017), Judge Dredd (1995), Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987), Ride Along (2014), Police Academy 3: Back in Training (1986), Empire State (2013)

Future BMT: 45.1 National Security (2003), 27.0 Kuffs (1992)

BMT: Police Academy (1984), The Snowman (2017), CHIPS (2017), Judge Dredd (1995), Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987), Ride Along (2014), Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment (1985), Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach (1988), Police Academy 6: City Under Siege (1989)

Matches: Police Academy (1984), Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987), Police Academy 3: Back in Training (1986), Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach (1988), Police Academy: Mission to Moscow (1994)

(I’ve changed this plot up, and I think it is a lot cooler. The y-axis is the total notability for each year. Blue is all films, green is wide release films, red is qualifying films (with the filled in portion being films we’ve seen), and gold is the amount being filled in by the film this week (in this case both BMT films this week). “Matches” at the bottom are films with the keyword in the IMDb plotline, so it isn’t a surprise that we’ve now seen all “police academy” films. Fun that we’ve seen another legit film in CHIPS.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 18) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Bubba Smith is No. 1 billed in Police Academy 5: Assignment: Miami Beach and No. 2 billed in Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol, which also stars Sharon Stone (No. 4 billed) who is in The Specialist (No. 2 billed) which also stars Sylvester Stallone (No. 1 billed) who is in The Expendables 3 (No. 1 billed) which also stars Jason Statham (No. 2 billed) who is in In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (No. 1 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 3 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (1 + 2) + (4 + 2) + (1 + 1) + (2 + 1) + (3 + 1) = 18. If we were to watch Surrender we can get the HoE Number down to 15.

Notes – Steve Guttenberg turned down the lead role and gave a firm “no” to any other Police Academy sequels that might turn up (and they did). He turned them all down. Two decades later, he expressed in an interview that he regretted turning down the chance to star in the later sequels, and was among the main people trying to make another Police Academy movie.

When Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987) was released, acerbic critic Rex Reed swore, “If they make another Police Academy movie, I’ll leave the business.” At the time, Paul Maslansky said, “Reed’s one of the reasons I’m making Police Academy 5. I expect him to be a man of his word.” To Maslansky’s disappointment, Reed was not.

Regarding his experience working on this film, Rene Auberjonois (Tony) stated, “Why I choose to do things is a mystery to me sometimes. I’ve done things that, on the face of it, you think, ‘why would anybody do Police Academy 5?’ I had to look at the role, and see if there’s a reason to do it. I did it because it was an opportunity to play a character that nobody else was ever going to let me play. I had a great time doing it, don’t regret it for a moment, and I’d do it again in a minute.”

Had Steve Guttenberg agreed to appear in the movie, his character Mahoney was to be promoted to Lieutenant at the end of the film. (Instead it was Hightower)

Bobcat Goldthwait did not reprise his role of Zed due to not being able to come to a financial agreement with the producers. Because of this, the filmmakers believed that there was no point in bringing back Sweetchuck without Zed, and so Tim Kazurinsky ended up not being involved either. Bobcat later said that he skipped this sequel because the script lost focus and his character “would never talk like that.”

The movie’s script and some promotional materials list Tony’s full name as Tony Stark. The surname was edited out of the film after Warner Brothers discovered that “Tony Stark” was a registered trademark owned by Marvel, for use in their Iron Man comics.

The book that Captain Harris is seen holding whilst “congratulating” Commandant Lassard on his mandatory retirement is a hardback copy of “3 Cheers for Me”, the first novel in the Bandy Papers series written by Donald Jack.

Janet Jones (Officer Kate) wed hockey player Wayne Gretzky four months after this movie’s release.

Michael Winslow (Jones), David Graf (Tackleberry), and George Gaynes (Commandant Lassard) are the only actors who appeared in all seven Police Academy movies. Winslow also had a regular role on Police Academy: The Series (1997).

Matt McCoy’s character of Commandant Eric Lassard’s nephew, Nick, marks the fourth member of the Lassard family to be in a Police Academy movie. Previously, we’ve seen Lassard’s wife in Police Academy (1984) and Lassard’s brother, Captain Pete Lassard in Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment (1985).

Early drafts featured a canine character called Clancy, a Miami police dog.

At one point, David Spade’s Kyle Rumford character from Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987) was being considered as a possible replacement for the departing Steve Guttenberg.

Mannequin Recap

Jamie

Jonathan Switcher is a true artist who just can’t seem to hold down a job. That is until his most prized creation (a beautiful mannequin) shows up in a store window. This begins his wild ride as a top display window creator. (Oh and also the mannequin comes alive only for him and he’s in love with it.) Can they stop the dastardly rival store before it’s too late? Find out in… Mannequin.

How?! Jonathan Switcher just crafted his masterpiece. A paragon of artistic achievement. A mannequin? Wha-wha-whaaaa. While he can’t get his bodacious mannequin out of his head, he also can’t hold down a job due to his artistic vision. Wandering the streets, no job, no girlfriend, no hope he suddenly happens upon his mannequin queen in the window of a store. Oh, glorious day! He shows up the next day and through some quick thinking he gets on the good side of the owner of the store. She insists he get a job and soon he’s working alongside the mannequin herself. What a dream! And what’s even more fantastic is that the mannequin also turns out to be a cursed Egyptian princess, Emmy, who comes alive when Jonathan and her are alone (not making this up). Now they are rocking out together and totally in love, not to mention that Jonathan has found his true calling as a display window creative. Soon he’s the talk of the town and the crosstown rivals, who are also hoping to buy their store, are ready to swipe Jonathan away. With the help of his ex-girlfriend and the smarmy manager of the store, they are able to figure out that the mannequin is the key to it all. They swipe Emmy and Jonathan and his pals are soon in hot pursuit. It’s a classic 80’s action sequence that ends with Jonathan rescuing Emmy from an industrial shredder. As a result Emmy no longer is cursed to only be alive for Jonathan and everyone is like “Woah, that lady was a mannequin but now she’s just a hot alive person,” and Emmy and Jonathan smooch a bunch. THE END.

Why?! Love, and that’s not even a joke. While I like to compare the film to the ludicrousness of Weekend at Bernie’s, that film was much closer to the greed-is-goodness of the 80’s ideal. This is all about Emmy not being forced to marry and instead find true love. Now the bad guys… those guys are just about greed being good.

Who?! There is an interesting Producer aspect to this film. Joseph Farrell was an executive producer. At the time he was the founder and chief executive of NRG, the original market testing firm in Hollywood. He basically created the focus group. Apparently he stepped in on this film to prove that the method really worked and made significant changes (hiring McCarthy was one). Despite it being BMT it was a big success and got us Mannequin 2: On the Move. So thank you, Joseph Farrell.

What?! Unfortunately Emmy herself is the MacGuffin here. Everyone wants and needs her, but the audiences could care less about that. They just want them sweet smooches between Emmy and Jonathan. I also do believe this was the one where Patrick and I spied a Dunkin Donuts coffee in the background of a scene and exclaimed “Mannequin runs on Dunkin” and it was pretty great.

Where?! You can read articles online where people suggest this is one of the substantial Philly settings of all time. The gist of the argument is that Mannequin really does take you around Philly and reiterate the setting of Philly and celebrate Philly to an extent that you just don’t see very often. Obviously it’s not going to compete with Rocky, but it is a surprisingly strong setting film/franchise. B+.

When?! I really would have thought this could have been a secret holiday film cause everyone knows that the holidays are prime display window season. The rival company could have been all like “We need him, Christmas is just around the corner,” and that would have done. But the real issue is that I just don’t really remember if there was a specific time mentioned… and I blame the movie itself by not setting it during Christmas. F.

Mannequin is pleasant enough once you get past the set up. It opens with a totally unnecessary and poorly acted scene set in “ancient Egypt” in order to set up the (also totally unnecessary) plot point that Emmy is an Egyptian princess trapped in the mannequin’s body until she is able to find true love. They should have learned a thing or two from Xanadu and just rolled with Emmy being alive because of the power of art/love or whatever. But beyond that it’s just a silly farce a la Weekend at Bernie’s. Similar to that film it really mostly suffers by reputation. When your concept is that a man falls in love with a mannequin who comes to life only when they are alone (a concept that would likely be frowned upon by today’s standards), you are playing a bit behind the eight ball… much like if, you know, you came up with a film where a couple of dopes have to pretend their boss is alive for a weekend and parade around with his corpse… kinda like that. Patrick? 

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Mannequin? What, does this Mannequin not even know how to move? Let’s go!

P’s View on the Preview – I think the most startling thing was realizing that despite no one mentioning this fact, the mannequin is actually from ancient Egypt. I had just figured she was, you know … a magic mannequin or something. But then only Leonard Maltin talks about the whole beginning in Egypt. Still totally different than the set up to the sequel, but a lot closer than most of the preview would suggest. What were my expectations? I only really expected Kim Cattrall to be amazing as usual. Otherwise I was excited for (1) a dance sequence, and (2) just how 80s everything was going to be. So I knew I would at least be entertained by that.

The Good – Kim Cattrall is, as expected, very charming in the film, and mostly saves it from just being forgettable 80s nonsense. The way they play into the silliness of the concept is also very winning, and Hollywood Montrose as a character might be offensive by some standards these days, but I think it ends up being the right tone of ridiculousness. That isn’t to say the film works because the plot is nonsensical, but there are good performances, and it is less self-serious than one might think going into it. Best Bit: Kim Cattrall.

The Bad – It feels like Spader and Carole Davis were in a totally different movie, the aforementioned self-serious Mannequin … which now that I think about, I’ll definitely be writing a pitch for in the later Remake section. I think the major strike against the film is that it is virtually plotless. A guy can’t hold down a job, ends up finding a magic mannequin … uh, I guess he foils the B-plot of a takeover of a Philadelphia department store? Wait, is that actually the plot of the film? See, it slides off your brain like water off of a mannequin’s slick exterior. Fatal Flaw: Nothing story.

The BMT – I think this film is better than it has any right to be. And I think given the second film, it ends up being far more enjoyable that you would think given that as context. As far as BMT is concerned, this is exactly the type of film you forget actually qualified until one day you check Rotten Tomatoes and it is sitting at 40% and no longer qualifies. Then you thank god for giving you the instinct to watch the film while it was still considered bad. Did it meet my expectations? The dance sequence is b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-b-bonkers, and makes the movie worth watching just for that. Well … I guess in reality it makes it worth finding that specific clip on Youtube. Still, so very very 80s.

Roast-radamus – Some solid Product Placement (What?) with Mannequin running on Dunkin’ (Donuts), and Carnival Cruises doing one of the window displays at the department stores (uh, big pull for a down-on-its-luck department store to get their window display sponsored by Carnival, but whatever). Really nice Setting as a Character (Where?) for Philadelphia. Which is bigger for Philadelphia, the Mannequin Cinematic Universe, or Rocky? Let the debate rage. In the end I think this is closest to Good.

Sequel, Prequel, Remake – I already mentioned it, I’m doing the gritty Remake of the Mannequin franchise. Jonathan Switcher is a happy-go-lucky artist creating ou-of-this-world mannequin creations for local department store Prince & Company in 80s Philadelphia. He has a wonderful life and a wonderful wife and couldn’t be happier. That is, up until the eeeevil Richards, a corporate raider hell bent on owning Prince & Company once and for all, sends thugs to work Switcher over and accidentally kills his beloved wife Emmy! Descending into madness and grief Switcher goes to the department store and fashions an exact replica of Emmy from the mannequin displays, and as he prays to god to take him and return Emmy, she … comes alive? He’s horrified, but maybe, just maybe this is a sign. He asks Emmy who killed her and she reveals it was Richards! His old nemesis did this! Hell bent on vengeance, Switcher and Mannequin Emmy take out Richards’ thugs, and work their way up to a showdown at Richards’ corporate headquarters. As Switcher shoots down Richards in cold blood he turns to his lady love to find her to be a mannequin once more. Was it all in his head? Or did the vengeance release her restless soul from its terrestrial prison? You’ll have to wait for the sequel to find out. Now called The Mannequin.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Mannequin Preview

Jamie and Patrick sit nervously in their limousine. Fortunately the hours worth of makeup covering Michael Myers’ chest shielded him from the brunt of the sniper’s bullet. The rest of production went off without a hitch, but even so Banks insisted they have a bodyguard for the premier. “It’s the next logical place they’ll try to take you out,” the suave bodyguard says. They watch the final cut of Rich & Poe: Legends Never Die: The Director’s Cut with mixed emotions and pat each other on the back when the crowd rises in thunderous applause. While a disaster would have stopped the cyborgs they can’t help but cherish the return of Rich and Poe. They smile as it’s announced that the Academy has met early and awarded them Best Picture. On stage, they lean into the microphone but stop, puzzled. Something is off…. Suddenly they see their bodyguard amidst the crowd. “He’s got a gun!” they scream but as a shot rings out they find themselves pushed to the side. On the ground is Kyle, their old friend from prison, having taken a bullet for them. 

A week later they sit in their apartment waiting with bated breath as the reviews for the R&P rip-off pour in. 37%… 38%… 39% and it stops. “One review and it would have topped 40% and never qualified,” Jamie says banging the giant box still taking up half the apartment. “If only we knew someone else who had a review website… that would be perfect,” Patrick says with a chuckle. Kyle, staying with them while recovering, softly says, “I do, but you probably aren’t interested in it.” He shrugs, red-faced. They look at him quizzically. “Uh,” he continues, “it’s called SMT… SexyMannequinTimes.com… we primarily review films that have sexy mannequins in them.” That’s right! We are indeed watching the premier film series for SexyMannequinTimes.com (warning: not a real website… hopefully) Mannequin and Mannequin 2: On the Move. The mere existence is dumbfounding, but no more dumbfounding than the existence of Weekend at Bernie’s and Weekend at Bernie’s 2. This also marked the transition from sequels/franchises into big ol’ bomb town where we are only watching films that are rated BOMB in Leonard Maltin’s review book. Let’s go!

Mannequin (1987) – BMeTric: 33.2; Notability: 27

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 11.6%; Notability: top 50.0%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 12.6% Higher BMeT: Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, Teen Wolf Too, Ishtar, Silent Night, Deadly Night 2, Surf Nazis Must Die, Who’s That Girl, Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise, Masters of the Universe, House II: The Second Story, Over the Top, Death Wish 4: The Crackdown, Hard Ticket to Hawaii, Burglar, Cherry 2000; Higher Notability: Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, Masters of the Universe, Who’s That Girl, Ishtar, Walker, Cherry 2000, Blind Date, Burglar, Fatal Beauty, Over the Top, House II: The Second Story, Death Wish 4: The Crackdown, The Sicilian, Slam Dance, The Believers, Nuts, Creepshow 2, Malone, Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise, Rent-a-Cop, and 8 more; Lower RT: Teen Wolf Too, Revenge of the Nerds II: Nerds in Paradise, House II: The Second Story, The Sicilian, Hello Again, Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, Date with an Angel, Flowers in the Attic, Masters of the Universe, Death Wish 4: The Crackdown, Hard Ticket to Hawaii, Russkies, The Squeeze, Rent-a-Cop, Siesta, Beyond Therapy, Slam Dance, Surf Nazis Must Die; Notes: Borderline cult classic right there. You get that up to around 6.2 and you’re cooking with fire. The Notability is relatively low which is interesting … I assume there are like five characters total and the film is basically just Weird Science but with a mannequin.

Leonard Maltin – BOMB – Cattrall is an ancient Egyptian spirit who embodies a department store mannequin; McCarthy is the only one who sees her come to life, and falls in love with her. Attempt [sic] to recreate the feeling of old screwball comedies is absolute rock-bottom fare. Dispiriting to anyone who remembers what movie comedy ought to be. Followed by a sequel.

(Huh … uh, none of the advertisements or anything actually suggest the Egyptian spirit thing. I sure hope they expand on that explicitly in a bizarre opening segment. If not that I hope they instead basically never mention it at all.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTfhUj4LZVE/

(Oh shit, Cannon. Wait a minute, is that the cop from Police Academy … they really were on a studio contract back in the day. The concept of the film is so very, very strange … I kind of dig it. The 80s were a hell of a drug.)

Directors – Michael Gottlieb – (Known For: The Shrimp on the Barbie; Future BMT: Mr. Nanny; A Kid in King Arthur’s Court; BMT: Mannequin; Notes: The Shrip on the Barbie was a film he disowned, an Alan Smithee film. He became a video game producer after he stopped directing. He died in 2014.)

Writers – Edward Rugoff (written by) – (Known For: Double Take; Future BMT: Mr. Nanny; BMT: Mannequin: On the Move; Mannequin; Notes: Clearly the writing partner of Gottlieb. His father was also in the movie business and ran something called Cinema 5 which was some independent film thing back in the day.)

Michael Gottlieb (written by) – (Future BMT: Mr. Nanny; BMT: Mannequin: On the Move; Mannequin; Notes: Filmed, edited, and directed the Playboy Mid Summer Night’s Dream Party in 1985.)

Actors – Andrew McCarthy – (Known For: Weekend at Bernie’s; Pretty in Pink; St. Elmo’s Fire; The Spiderwick Chronicles; Less Than Zero; The Joy Luck Club; Main Street; Only You; The Good Guy; Jours tranquilles à Clichy; Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle; Night of the Running Man; The Beniker Gang; Camp Hell; I Woke Up Early the Day I Died; Getting In; Stag; New Waterford Girl; Dr. M; Cosas que nunca te dije; Future BMT: Class; Fresh Horses; Mulholland Falls; Year of the Gun; Kansas; Catholic Boys; BMT: Weekend at Bernie’s II; Mannequin; Notes: Is a pretty big television director, directing things like The Black List and Orange is the New Black. He still acts in stuff, although I couldn’t tell you the last thing I saw him in.)

Kim Cattrall – (Known For: Sex and the City; Big Trouble in Little China; Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country; The Ghost; Live Nude Girls; Ice Princess; The Devil and Daniel Webster; Horrible Histories: The Movie; Masquerade; The Return of the Musketeers; Rosebud; Hold-Up; Above Suspicion; City Limits; Meet Monica Velour; The Tiger’s Tail; Tribute; Midnight Crossing; Ticket to Heaven; Future BMT: 15 Minutes; Porky’s; Unforgettable; Turk 182; BMT: Crossroads; Baby Geniuses; Sex and the City 2; The Bonfire of the Vanities; Mannequin; Police Academy; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Actress for Sex and the City 2 in 2011; and Nominee for Worst Supporting Actress for The Bonfire of the Vanities in 1991; Notes: She had a wild career, being on the last actors on the studio contract system (I think in the late 70s, hard to tell). She has had a very public feud with Sarah Jessica Parker about Sex and the City and is not going to appear in the third film.)

Estelle Getty – (Known For: Mask; Tootsie; Stuart Little; Deadly Force; BMT: Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot; Mannequin; Razzie Notes: Winner for Worst Supporting Actress for Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot in 1993; Notes: Won an emmy for Golden Girls. Was married for over 50 years.)

Budget/Gross – $7.9 million / Domestic: $42,721,196 (Worldwide: $42,721,196)

(That is a huge success! No wonder they decided to make a sequel. It is still confusing that they decided to make a sequel with a whole new cast and a totally different plotline … but we’ll deal with that in that preview.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 21% (8/39): Mannequin is a real dummy, outfitted with a ludicrous concept and a painfully earnest script that never springs to life, despite the best efforts of an impossibly charming Kim Cattrall.

(They had to go with “dummy” huh? I would have as well. And yes, Kim Cattrall was impossibly charming in the 80s, just go watch Police Academy! Reviewer Highlight: There`s some solid talent here, but Gottlieb’s overemphatic direction reduces them all to broad caricature — the kind of crazed mugging that isn’t often seen outside the boundaries of Saturday morning kiddie shows. – Dave Kehr, Chicago Tribune)

Poster – Manalive

(This poster really tickles me for a variety of reasons. Like why is he leaning against a rad motorcycle?… why is he wearing a tuxedo?… the dude is a down on his luck artist. And those are kind of the most normal parts of the poster. It is bad, but kinda ironically good… but still other than the font it is basically everything I hate in a poster. C-.)

Tagline(s) – When she comes to life, anything can happen! (C-)

(Good thing they didn’t use the first tagline here, cause that one doesn’t make sense. This at least is telling you the plot of the film, albeit in the blandest, least creative way possible. Also a tad too long.)

Keyword – mannequin

Top 10: Eyes Wide Shut (1999), The Silence of the Lambs (1991), Prisoners (2013), Blade Runner (1982), Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008), Escape Room (2019), Stardust (2007), Now You See Me (2013), Zombieland: Double Tap (2019), V for Vendetta (2005)

Future BMT: 95.8 Disaster Movie (2008), 56.2 Land of the Lost (2009), 55.1 The Bachelor (1999), 51.2 Dude, Where’s My Car? (2000), 49.8 Curse of the Pink Panther (1983), 47.0 Beverly Hills Ninja (1997), 46.1 Sleepover (2004), 42.7 Maximum Risk (1996), 42.2 Transylvania 6-5000 (1985);

BMT: Mannequin: On the Move (1991), Mannequin (1987), Friday the 13th (2009), House of Wax (2005), Battlefield Earth (2000), Perfect Stranger (2007), I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998), Silent Hill: Revelation (2012), Johnny Mnemonic (1995), Confessions of a Shopaholic (2009), Grind (2003)

(Hell yeah there is a mannequin in Silent Hill: Revelation. There is a whole mannequin monster! The Bachelor, now that is a film I haven’t thought of in years! I can’t wait to watch bonafide movie star Chris O’Donnell in action.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 15) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Estelle Getty is No. 3 billed in Mannequin and No. 2 billed in Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot, which also stars Sylvester Stallone (No. 1 billed) who is in Expendables 3 (No. 1 billed), which also stars Jason Statham (No. 2 billed) who is in In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Seige Tale (No. 1 billed), which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 4 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => 3 + 2 + 1 + 1 + 2 + 1 + 4 + 1 = 15. If we were to watch The Glass House we can get the HoE Number down to 13.

Notes – Director Michael Gottlieb got the idea for this film when he was walking by a store window and was startled to “see” a mannequin move by itself. He realized it was just an optical illusion caused by a combination of lights and shadows, but began to wonder what would happen if a mannequin actually DID come to life.

The scenes for the rival store Illustra were filmed at an actual department store, Boscov’s in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania. It’s easy to distinguish by the square chandeliers and neon department signs on the walls. (Probably not actually that easy …)

Originally, the lead role was written to be an older, lonely storekeeper, with Dudley Moore in mind for the role, but when Andrew McCarthy came on board, the role was rewritten to be the role of a young artist. (fun)

Before filming this movie, Kim Cattrall spent six weeks posing for a Santa Monica sculptor, who captured her likeness. Six mannequins, each with a different expression, were made. Cattrall later recalled, “There’s no way to play a mannequin except if you want to sit there as a dummy. I did a lot of body-building because I wanted to be as streamlined as possible. I wanted to match the mannequins as closely as I could.” (Kim Cattrall you are a gem)

The organ Jonathan Switcher sits at in the dance sequence is an actual organ in the John Wanamaker building in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It is the largest operational pipe organ in the world. (wait wait wait wait wait … dance sequence?)

Kim Cattrall stated doing this movie made her feel grown up: “I’ve become more of a leading lady instead of, like, the girl. All the other movies that I’ve done I played the girl, and the plot was around the guy. I’ve never had anybody to do special lighting for me, or find out what clothes look good on me, or what camera angles are best for me. In this movie, I learned a lot from it. It’s almost like learning old Hollywood techniques. I’ve always been sort of a tomboy. I feel great being a girl, wearing a dress.”

One of the original Emmy mannequins used in the filming of the movie was restored by the store South Fellini and is currently on display in their store, which is located in the Fashion District in center city Philadelphia (the head/torso are the original pieces).

David Isaacs and Ken Levine did an uncredited rewrite of the screenplay. They later did a rewrite for Mannequin: On the Move (1991) for which they were credited. (Cool)

This movie is the rare Hollywood romance where the lead actress is older than the lead actor. Kim Cattrall was 30 years old when she played Ema Hesire aka Emmy; Andrew McCarthy was only 24 years old when he played Jonathan Switcher.

Meshach Taylor made a cameo as flamboyant window dresser Hollywood Montrose in the music video of the movie’s theme song “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” by the rock band Jefferson Starship. He also reprised the role in the sequel Mannequin: On the Move (1991). (A cameo? He’s basically the entire trailer!)

The series episode Journey to the Unknown: Eve (1968) featured the story of Albert Baker (Dennis Waterman), a young man who sees in the display window of a department store an attractive mannequin. It comes to life and smiles at him, he falls in love and so gets a job at the store as a window dresser. (Isn’t this all based on Pygmalion?)

Awards – Nominee for the Oscar for Best Music, Original Song (Albert Hammond, Diane Warren, 1988)

Problem Child Recap

Jamie

Junior is a child and also is a problem. As a result he keeps getting returned to the orphanage. That is until Ben and Flo Healy show up looking to enter the exclusive parental club. While Junior wreaks havoc across the land, driving everyone around him crazy, Ben keep on killing him with love and kindness. Can Ben help Junior feel loved and change his ways before it’s too late? Find out in… Problem Child. 

How?! Junior spent his childhood shuttled from home to home until ending up in an orphanage where his troublesome ways continued. The nuns have been driven insane and just when it seems like Junior will be all alone forever, in walks Ben Healy and his wife Flo. They are a couple desperate for a child, Ben so he can be the perfect all-American dad, Flo so that they can start getting invited to the exclusive parties, dinners, and trips that other families partake in. Junior seems like a quick and easy fix to all of their problems, right? Wrong. Junior continues his terrible ways as he ruins camping trips, birthday parties, burns down his room, injures his grandpa, etc. etc. etc. It all comes to a head when Junior injures a multitude of children during a baseball game and our boy Ben realizes that maybe, just maybe, Junior is bad news. When they confront the manager of the orphanage they are appalled to find that Junior has been returned over and over from other families. Unlike Flo, though, Ben is more appalled at himself. How could he, all-American dad, be unable to give the love necessary to help Junior? But when he goes out to tell Junior that they won’t be taking him back, Junior doesn’t believe them and drives away in the family car, destroying his grandpa’s business in the process. Suffering a mental breakdown, Ben doesn’t realize that things have gone from bad to far far worse when a serial killer that Junior has been corresponding with shows up at the front door. Thinking he’s Junior’s uncle, Flo woos him as a way to try to take Junior (or maybe just her) away with him. Waking up to find Junior and Flo gone and a ransom note scrawled on the wall Ben snaps out of it just in time to race to the circus (for real) and attempt to pay the ransom and get Junior back. The serial killer attempts to escape, but not so fast! Ben and Junior super team chase down the serial killer and stop him just in time. Now best buds, the father and son super team head off into the sunset together. THE END. 

Why?! Probably the sweetest thing about the film is Ben Healy and just how desperately he wants to be the bestest dad in the world ever. The implication is that his own father is cold and distant (despite selling sporting equipment geared to the father-son experience) and Ben is determined that his own son will never lack for love. This unerring love for his son ultimately wins out and saves Junior. Probably we could drill pretty deep into the root of Junior’s behavioral issues. Despite the implication at the beginning of the film that he is evil from the get go, we get the sense that a lot of his behavior is more about the feeling that he is unlovable.

Who?! Dennis Dugan has a long history of BMT films. Not surprising as he’s one of Adam Sandler’s favorites. This was his feature directing debut and as a result the first of many cameos he made in films he’s directed. I think we’ve done about eight of his films and I believe he made cameos in all of them. Impressive.

What?! Smiley Pies obviously has a very, very prominent product placement (in my memories at least). Patrick points out Pepsi as the actual most prominent product placement, but for me the product that stands the test of time is Penn tennis balls as there is a scene where a car crashes into a giant display case of tennis balls and it’s burned there forever… actually every moment of this film is indelibly burned into my memory.

Where?! Very clearly takes place in Illinois in a town called Cold River, which is obviously made up. Impressive number of signs and posters for the location given that it’s not real. Not in the least bit relevant to the plot, but it is prominent. B+.

When?! Patrick pointed out to me that this could be one of the few Fake Holiday Film Alerts we’ll come across. The baseball scene occurs during Founder’s Day in Cold River, which being a fake place must mean it’s a fake holiday. Which is bizarre in a great way. Really there are a large number of dates thrown around in the film via newspaper, but the most solid seems to be from the poster advertising the Circus which would place the film at the end of June or beginning of July, which tracks with the camping trip, baseball, etc. B+

Problem Child is everything I remember it is. It is just nonstop one liners and gags by a small child. It makes me wonder if I maybe underrate Dennis Dugan as a director given how much I loathe some of his films (looking at you Grown Ups(es)). The fact is that he took a kid that basically never acted before and spun some really entertaining gold. He obviously was helped by a very game John Ritter who is actually amazing in this film. He’s just so goddamn likeable that you basically ignore a pretty problematic concept (but weren’t they all back in the day). I have to acknowledge that the film’s basic plot is dark in a pretty gross way. The opening scene is shocking as we see Junior shuttled from home to home before being unceremoniously dropped at an orphanage. And throughout the film there is a stigmatization of adoption that is unacceptable by today’s standards. But all this doesn’t change that it basically lived up to my memories. It is quite entertaining and the sheer number of memorable quotes is impressive. I think the first Problem Child is actually… not that bad. Patrick?

Patrick

‘Ello everyone! Smiley Pies!? I haven’t had one of these in FIF-teen years! Let’s go!

P’s View on the Preview – I think I could have written the preview from memory, I’ve seen the film so many times. I looked up the kid actor who played Junior and really not very involved in acting after the films themselves. He is a great actor though given the part, but I’ll get to that later. What were my expectations? A blast from the past. I’m not joking when I say I’ve seen the film at least a dozen times. Which is kind of weird, as this simultaneously feels like a kids’ film which has become completely forgotten at this point.

The Good – The actor who plays Junior is really good considering the part was written for Macauley Culkin. He does a decent facsimile of the wiser-than-his-years mischief for a not-very-well-known child actor. The acting top-to-bottom is actually really good. And the surreal nature of the whole film is also just … it makes it really unique. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but as mean-spirited and weird as the film can get, there is an undeniably interesting point-of-view to it all. A comedic Bad Seed, as the screenwriters say, which I would say they nailed. Best Bit: Junior and John Ritter.

The Bad – Now, I say a comedic Bad Seed is interesting, but that doesn’t necessarily make it good. It is a very weird film, and almost definitely not a kids’ film … and yet it operated under the guise of a kids’ film. Which makes it unsurprising that critics thought it was abhorrent and that everyone involved thought it would bomb. The film isn’t really funny in any capacity, and Junior’s behavior at times is, indeed, abhorrent and unpleasant to watch. Fatal Flaw: Pushes things too far.

The BMT – On one hand I would say that they could have easily edited and reigned by Junior’s behavior and created a more tolerable mainstream hit I think. But then, Problem Child wouldn’t be the bizarre boundaries-pushing masterpiece that it is. I would argue though that this first one is actually really good, as long as you buy into the surreal weirdness of the cartoon world the screenwriters create. Did it meet my expectations? Yes, it is always odd to watch a film I watched constantly as a kid in BMT. I was pleasantly surprised with this one and I very much enjoyed watching it again.

Roast-radamus – A solid Product Placement (What?) for Pepsi throughout the film, not least of which prominently displayed during the baseball game (which, despite taking place on Founder’s Day, is not a secret holiday, more like a fake holiday). A really really good Setting as a Character (Where?) for Cold Water, Illinois. This film is really really Illinois which is excellent, but then also there is a giant statue of the founder Carl Coldwater outside of the adoption agency which is awesome. This is somehow closest to Good, don’t argue it just it, sue me I like the film.

Sequel, Prequel, Remake – Seeing as there are already multiple sequels and a television cartoon there is only one way to go, backwards! The Prequel goes full period piece, it is the late 50s, and Big and Little Ben are amoral travelling salesmen who will do whatever to earn a buck. The story centers around the arrival of the Healy’s in Cold Water. Big Ben places Little Ben in the local orphanage and gets him adopted out to a rich childless family where he begins to terrorize the neighborhood. Meanwhile, Big Ben reenters town pretending to be a local returning from war to find his young wife dead and only son adopted. The plan is for Little Ben to terrorize the couple into un-adopting him, and then Big Ben would exploit the shame and humiliation to blackmail them. In the end Little Ben realizes that they (gasp!) love him, and no matter what he does they will always love him! He runs away to the local circus where a friendly clown tells him that all families are different and he shouldn’t hate his father for their life of crime, that the best he can do is grow up, have a son, and love him as much as he can. Little Ben returns to town where Big Ben promptly turns him over to the rich couple for the reward money they’ve offered for his safe return. They are touched by the young family, unadopt Little Ben, and let Big Ben keep the money. He uses it to start his sports store and they settle down to a normal life. The End. Cold Water Grifters: A Problem Child Story.

You Just Got Schooled – Now what are the chances Problem Child had some weird cartoon series … 100% it turns out! I watched the first episode of Problem Child, the early 90s cartoon series. The episode is called Toys Will Be Toys. This cartoon is, first of all, terrible. But even besides that it has nothing to do with the movie it claims to be an adaptation of. Junior doesn’t seem to be an orphan, his father has the same red hair as him. Junior has a weird mutant possum pet, and a best friend who’s a girl not-named Trixie. His grandfather is the mayor, which very specifically didn’t happen in the films. And his father is a cop. Oddly the writers of the films did make the show, although I think it was drawn by a Spanish company which maybe explains it getting a bit lost in translation. The episode itself is pretty silly, Junior wants a toy bazooka, and scrimps and saves to buy the toy, only for it to turn out to all be elaborate false advertising. The episode ends with Junior getting revenge on the toy company president. D. Actually, maybe the worst adapted cartoon series I’ve seen. The Back to the Future show is way way better.

Cheerios,

The Sklogs

Problem Child Quiz

Man, the last thing I remember I was dipping and dodging from a car slamming into Big Ben’s Sports store. I sustained a pretty bad concussion though. Do you remember what happened in Problem Child?

Pop Quiz Hot Shot!

1) How does Junior end up getting acquainted with the Bow Tie Killer?

2) Why isn’t Little Ben’s father Big Ben handing the company over to Ben and who is he selling to instead?

3) How does the Bow Tie Killer escape prison?

4) What convinces Ben to return Junior to the orphanage … and then what convinces him that that is a terrible idea?

5) How much does the Bow Tie Killer want as ransom for Junior and Flo?

Bonus Question: What ever happened to Flo?

Answers