Holy shit, it’s 2022! Welcome! Happy New Year! We made it!! Oh shit, it’s cold. Here’s some staff picks to keep you warm.
Jason Soto (Host Whatever with Jason Soto, That’s Da Bomb, Yo!, Co-Host Between The Scares, Top 5 A Thru Z, CineGamer, From Inner Time, & Navigating The Multiverse):
Ten Little Indians (1965)
When I think January and February I just think dark and cold. I just want to curl up under a blanket, drink my steaming hot can of Diet Coke, and watch a murder mystery. Ten Little Indians, the 1965 version (there’s like 90 versions somehow), is one of my favorites. I read the book when I was a kid and my mom told me there was a movie and we rented it the day after I finished reading it and I loved the movie. Sure, I knew who did it but it was cool to see it played out on the screen. If you like murder mysteries and whodunits, check this version out!
Lisa Leaheey (Co-host Between The Scares, Whatever with Jason Soto, & The SibList):
Final Destination 2 (2003)
While most people in January focus on reinvention and fresh starts, the movie business considers the first months of the year to be a dead zone for new releases. That being said, there have been a few standouts, and one of my favorites is Final Destination 2. Released on January 31, 2003, FD2 is one of those sequels that improves upon the original; this is where the franchise figured itself out – I was never crazy about the first film, as I didn’t like that Death didn’t make itself known… the first death was made to look like a suicide, if you’ll recall. Here? Full-on chaos and tension ratcheted so high, we’ve learned life lessons from it (anyone else ensure they’re NEVER in traffic behind a log truck? Yup, I thought so.). My favorite scene? The fantastic Evan Lewis apartment sequence. Happy New Year, everyone!
Bill Szany (Co-host Top Five A Thru Z):
SLC Punk (1998)
If you like Matthew Lillard (Scream, Scooby Doo, Twin Peaks, Thir13en Ghosts) you will like SCL Punk! Also if different facets of society, as far as self labeled groups go, interest you at all you will enjoy this movie. It provides a great insight on the punk scene in the early days of punk as well as the groups they often butted heads with like Nazis, mods, and non-anarchists or just regular law abiding citizens. If you like movies like American History X or The Warriors you’ll probably enjoy this fast paced ride.
Pete Rangel, Jr (Co-host Top Five A Thru Z):
Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)
Spider-Man: No Way Home without spoilers was absolutely awesome and no pun of words amazing!!!
Rob Branch (Co-host CineGamer, Top 5 A Thru Z, Whatever with Jason Soto, & InfoBlast):
Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol (1987)
Convinced that his loyal police force is overworked, and above all, understaffed, silver-haired Commandant Eric Lassard comes up with a bold idea: why not recruit eager civilians to lend a hand in crushing crime? With this in mind, the ambitious “Citizens On Patrol” crime-fighting programme comes to life. Nevertheless, the absent-minded and always slimy arch-rival of the Police Academy, Captain Harris, is hell-bent on sabotaging the operation and taking over. What can be said about this movie from back in the late 1980’s. For one this movie wouldn’t be able to exist in today’s world. At one hour and 28 minutes it’s full of comedy, obscure music you’ll never hear outside of this move, humor and David Spade “skateboarding”. If I’m ever in funk, I pop this movie on and realize this: I came from an era that created this!
Lackey (Co-Host From Inner Time):
West Side Story (2021)
The world reacted to Steven Spielberg’s remake of the classic musical with a collective shrug, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth watching. The songs are great, the dancing is superb, the story is timeless. Performances are excellent from top to bottom. And while I prefer the 1961 original, this remake manages to improve on it in a couple of respects—specifically, the Jets and Sharks feel desperate and dangerous in a way they don’t feel in the original. My main criticisms are that Ansel Elgort’s Tony feels a bit soggy, and the dialog, while less stylized and more “realistic” than the original’s, isn’t as memorable. But that’s not going to stop me from naming it as one of my favorite films of the year, and it’s definitely worth a watch.
Nick Jobe (Co-host Navigating the Multiverse, InfoBlast):
January movies are typically studio dumping grounds, but there are occasionally some gold nuggets here and there. Case in point, Before Sunrise. A beautiful fairy tale romance that could have easily been Oscar contention. But I’m not here to talk about that movie. I’m here to talk about Tremors, because Tremors is awesome and a classic B-horror monster movie done absolutely right. If you haven’t seen it by now, give it a chance. The end.
Marc Pasonelli (Co-host The SibList):
Trading Places (1983)
I feel kind of silly even attempted to give a synopsis on this movie, since I feel majority of the people reading this must have seen this movie by now. Well, regardless… this is a Rags to Riches (to Rags) comedy where Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd team up to portray the “Rich” Louis Winthrope (Aykroyd) and the “Poor” Billy Ray Valentine (Murphy), and how two businessmen thought it would be fun to see what happens when you force them to walk a mile in each other’s shoes. Jamie Lee Curtis plays a “lady of the night” and Jim Belushi dresses like a gorilla and a young Giancarlo Esposito learns the “quart of blood” technique while behind bars. All you need is some frozen concentrated orange juice, legs and the ability to see, an overused snail joke, and $1.00 to enjoy this movie. Ever wondered what people, who have everything, are willing to do for fun?