Ghostbusters is one of the most beloved films of the ’80s. It’s a horror-comedy classic that had all audiences running to see it in theaters — especially kids. In fact, the film helped create the model for how to make and capitalize on a blockbuster, fueling bigger merchandising profits with a toy line. The film gave children cute quotable lines, such as “We came, we saw, we kicked it’s ass!” What else were kids picking up from this beloved, adored film about paranormal exterminators? In this episode of the ’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents podcast, ’80s Movie Guide founders Tara McNamara, Gen X, and Riley Roberts, Gen Z, identify and discuss the surprising, unintentional messages being delivered to ’80s youth. Also on iTunes and Stitcher.
What is The Shining about? Is it about a clairvoyant child? A haunted hotel? Cabin Fever? Reincarnation? Mental illness? Or, the evil that lies within us, that can be coaxed out if we’re not vigilant? Of course, all of the above. But, as is appropriate for this film, the devil is in the details. Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel is about domestic abuse. Before the ’80s, a husband could beat his wife regularly and would not be arrested. In this episode of ’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents, Gen Z host Tara McNamara explains how The Shining is a shining example of the horrors going on in households in 1980 and Gen Z host Riley Roberts shares a warning to every parent should hear about the chilling reality and darkness being experienced by teens today.
Note: In the podcast, we refer to a theory that didn’t come from us but we couldn’t remember the website. Rob Ager did thorough research and you can find his video here: http://bit.ly/30KCbj7
It’s the 35th Anniversary of A Nightmare Before Elm Street, a movie that terrified teens in 1984 but … now? In our latest episode of the “’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents” podcast, co-hosts Tara McNamara, Gen X, and Riley Roberts, Gen Y, examine the film through today’s lens. They examine how the Wes Craven original created something new to be afraid of while holding on to some of the tropes that would mess with the minds of Gen X’ers for years to come. Give it a listen here or iTunes or Stitcher and add your own original thoughts in the comments below or on social media @80sMovieGuide.
Color us black and white – it’s almost Halloween! It’s this time of year when parents think of sharing with their kids the one ’80s horror comedy that seems appropriate – Beetlejuice! And, in the ’80s, the Tim Burton classic was considered a children’s film with special effects makeup and monster creations all wrapped up in a wacky comedy. (Doubt it was considered a kids film? There was an cartoon series spinoff featuring our lovable demon and young teen Lydia adventuring around the Netherworld.)
The film is a bit problematic in regard to kids and teens. On this episode of our podcast ’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents (listen here or on Stitcher, iTunes, and BlogTalkRadio), movie critics Tara McNamara (Gen X) and Riley Roberts (Gen Z) explore how this beloved Michael Keaton film poked fun at suicide at a time when it was at an all-time high for teens. The two also examine how it holds up in today’s environment.
Thirty years ago, Daniel Waters wrote Heathers as a response to the John Hughes perspective of teen life, reflecting that getting through high school wasn’t just a struggle, it was survival. Hosts Tara McNamara, Gen X, and Riley Roberts, Gen Z, discuss how the Winona Ryder-Christian Slater classic delivers substantial insight into what it was like to be a teen in the late ’80s and compare it to what high school life is like now – and the impact of Heathers on today’s high school situation.
It's the 30th Anniversary of Say Anything, the film that truly launched Cameron Crowe as a filmmaker (yes, he'd written Fast Times at Ridgemont High and made The Wild Life, but was nowhere near the household name he'd become). Crowe proved himself to be the only true rival to John Hughes when creating teen films drenched in authenticity. The one element of the film that steps outside of that is the one the script mandate coming from the higher ups - an issue that reflected the times but sent '80s kids a message that hammered in what they were already being taught: Don't. Trust. Parents.
In this episode of '80s Movies: A Guide to What's Wrong with Your Parents, co-hosts Tara McNamara (Gen X) and Riley Roberts (Gen Z) discuss how the John Cusack classic holds up today, how it reflects the teen experience then and now, and that one sticky issue. Listen above or listen/subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, and BlogTalk Radio.
We share a mission with Ted Logan and Bill Preston, Esq. Cinema’s favorite air-guitaring airheads know that to move forward most righteously, you’ve got to travel back in time to understand history. And, that’s exactly what we do in the ’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Our Parents podcast. In this episode, we look back at why Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure, a “dumb” comedy about two guys who appear to be stoners, turned out to be most triumphant and how it does and doesn’t hold up today.
Take a listen (also available on iTunes and Stitcher) and share your thoughts on this 30-year old Keanu Reeves-Alex Winter classic. Also, get ready to Face the Music with the third film by checking out the Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure guide page.
Just One of the Guys has aspiring journalist Terry Griffith going undercover as a guy to fight the sexism she perceives is keeping her from landing a coveted internship at her city newspaper. However, the film puts its hand up at the idea that a girl gets sexist treatment or even get her own story told. Instead, Terry builds empathy for the challenges of the put upon male. In the process, she throws her own gender under the bus.
’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents podcast hosts Tara McNamara, Gen X, and Riley Roberts (pictured above in what we admit is some terrible Photoshop, but fun nonetheless), Gen Z, look at this and other examples of how Just One of the Guys affected a generation, for good and bad. Along the way, they discuss what’s outrageous about high school life today.
Xanadu is a pure, sweet romantic musical fantasy down to the kissing animated fish. Wait…what? You know, like the man dressed like a spider crawling under women’s legs. Huh? Xanadu is a fever dream: crazy imagery and chaos that seems awesome but when you wake up, you realize none of it made sense. But, just Olivia Newton-John sings, it’s hard to deny that Xanadu is, indeed, “magic.”
’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents podcasters Riley Roberts (pictured above) and Tara McNamara give their take on the roller disco musical fantasy that will leave you both humming and scratching your head. They cover the What the Heck elements, what makes it hold up, and how – even in a squeaky clean PG film, it delivered another chip in the Gen X psyche.
Give the podcast a listen and then check out our Xanadu guide page for the full explanation of what went right and went went wrong.
If you haven’t seen Casual Sex? starring Lea Thompson and Victoria Jackson, you must. At first glance, it’s a cute rom-com about two women who are looking for Mr. Right after the AIDS health crisis scared them off Mr. Right Now hook-ups. It takes place at a Club Med knock-off, the exercise fad, jokes about mineral water, and Lea Thompson’s hair are so, so ’80s. But, on closer look , it’s a tale of ’80s Hollywood history. As the “making of” story is unwound, it’s an education in how male-dominated Hollywood stuck their thumb into and managed to totally alter and mangle what is likely the most female-centric film production of the 1980’s.
While there are a few head-scratching moments, it remains a charmer, thanks to the talent of the actors, the director Genevieve Robert, and screenwriters Wendy Goldman and the late Judy Toll. Goldman explained how it all went down with our podcast hosts Tara McNamara and Riley Roberts in the latest episode of ’80s Movies: A Guide to What’s Wrong with Your Parents.
Goldman’s insights are also worked into our complete guide to the film. And, check out Tara interviewing Lea Thompson about Casual Sex? when the romp airs on Day 1 of HDNet Movies Iconic ’80s week on July 22 at 9:45pE/6:45p PST.