The Concorde… Airport ’79 (1979)

Joe Patroni is back! The spiritual center of the Airport series (strictly by default since he’s the only recurring character in all four films) completes a journey that began in the original Airport when he was the chief mechanic who helped shovel out a snowbound plane on Runway 29. Since that blizzardy night, he’s become an executive at a different airline, gone on to be a liaison between the military and yet another company, before finally settling in at a fourth airline as a pilot who now magically has 30 years experience flying all manner of aircraft! Continue reading “The Concorde… Airport ’79 (1979)”

Avalanche (1978)

An avalanche of stock footage and primitive special effects conspire to bury poor bloated Rock Hudson’s career in this Roger Corman-produced late 70s entry in the disaster film canon. And while the avalanche sequence, regardless of how unconvincingly it was edited, at least provided the only moments of excitement, the film otherwise seemed intent on putting so little effort into even the expected tropes of the genre you barely were given a chance to laugh at the characters’ various crises! Continue reading “Avalanche (1978)”

Happy New Year, Charlie Brown (1986)

Spolier alert – Charlie Brown has a miserable New Year’s Eve. While it can be argued that it wasn’t all his fault since his teacher assigned his class to read War and Peace over the Christmas break, he was the only one the homework caused to have a days-long nervous breakdown. But what would the holidays be if there weren’t multiple stressors to push susceptible folks like Charlie Brown into a downward spiral of whiny self-loathing? Continue reading “Happy New Year, Charlie Brown (1986)”

The Tiny Tree (1975)

I know I grimaced as if the Grinch just ripped a Christmas-hating fart right in my face when the old badger told the two young forest animals at the beginning of The Tiny Tree that the Christmas story he was about to tell them wasn’t about toys or Santa. You don’t have to be Rudolph on a foggy night to see that absolutely no good could come of such a proposition. Just from the title alone, I was already concerned that this was going to involve a midget tree pining (get it?) to be a giant redwood and learning the valuable lesson that God made you just like he intended to because he hates your undersized guts! Continue reading “The Tiny Tree (1975)”

Avalanche (1999)

When America’s Last Frontier is threatened by certain destruction, it falls on the shoulders of one man to rescue the babe, save the city, and outsmart a murderous herd of polar bears! He also has to break through the emotional barrier his best friend’s old lady erects because she blames him for the death of the man they both loved! And if that wasn’t enough, he’s got to go and survive having his plane shot down in the mountains! Continue reading “Avalanche (1999)”

Thanksgiving Cartoons That Make You Thankful for Christmas Cartoons

Thanksgiving may dominate in the areas of meals and football, but it lags woefully far behind Christmas and Halloween when it comes to animated specials. It’s not that there aren’t any Thanksgiving-themed cartoons, it’s that there aren’t any that won’t make you want to heave your pumpkin pie all over the TV screen. Dull stories of Pilgrims and Native Americans compete with ill-advised weird Turkey Day entries in such well known franchises as the Berenstain Bears and the Wizard of Oz. What follows is a list of such specials you should only put on if your goal is to clear out those lingering in-laws and friends who don’t know when it’s time to call it a night. Continue reading “Thanksgiving Cartoons That Make You Thankful for Christmas Cartoons”

Airport ’77 (1977)

A group of art thieves hijack a plane by using knockout gas! The pilot is a progressive man who wants to marry his girlfriend, but she’s straight out of Ms. Magazine and is too career minded to commit! Familiar TV faces abound on this doomed flight including Brenda Vacarro, Darren McGavin and Gil Gerard! The plane comes equipped with gartguan-sized videodisc player! Even better, it also comes equipped with a lounge singer! And the whole thing crashes into the Bermuda Triangle! Truly, Airport ’77 is the most gloriously 70s of the four Airport movies! (Or any movie for that matter!) Continue reading “Airport ’77 (1977)”