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Attention comedy geeks everywhere! To paraphrase a literary classic, this new documentary feature lets us all “look back in laughter” at one of the most influential humor magazines of the last fifty years. Actually its legacy reaches on past its newstand existence. Yes, it’s been absent from newsstands (there’s still a few of them left) for nearly twenty years. But, to paraphrase again, we’ve come “not to bury this magazine, but to praise it”. And to recall the chuckles and the mini-empire it spawned. Of course, this wasn’t the first humor publication. Puck paved the way decades before. Then Mad magazine shook up the staid 1950’s. But by 1970, that mag had somewhat settled into a (still entertaining) routine, poking fun at suburbia, and wasn’t connecting with the “counter-culture”. Younger “baby boomers” wanted their humor to have a sharper edge, to reflect the “hippie” spirit, and »
- Jim Batts
Live from New York!
Directed By Bao Nguyen
Many successful comedians and comics are incubated in nurturing, yet deeply competitive environments. The various comedy clubs on the East and West coast of the Us spawned many of the post-war titans, such as Richard Pryor, Joan Rivers and George Carlin, bathing them in the blood of occasionally hostile, alcohol-fueled, combative audiences. In the UK, since the 1970’s both the Oxford and Cambridge performing arts groups have produced class-connected troupes and entities as diverse as Monty Python, Fry & Laurie, The It Crowd, Peep Show, and even John Oliver of Last Week Tonight, a solid grounding which would often lead to high profile series and sitcoms on UK terrestrial television.
Will there be a seventh season of Community? Add creator Dan Harmon to the list of people who think it is possible the series will be cancelled, yet again. Harmon ran the show from its fall 2009 NBC debut, through the first three seasons, before being replaced by David Guarascio and Moses Port. Following a faltering fourth season, Sony Pictures Television brought Harmon back for season five, after which NBC cancelled the single-camera sitcom.
Yahoo! Screen brought Community back for season six, and fans were hoping for season seven. In talking to The Hollywood Reporter, Harmon reveals that Community's champion, Kathy Savitt is no longer at Yahoo! Community stars Joel McHale, Gillian Jacobs, Danny Pudi, Yvette Nicole Brown, and Jim Rash. Chevy Chase and Donald Glover exited in 2014.
From The Hollywood Reporter:
Yahoo added a new family-friendly comedy series to its slate with the support of American automaker Chevrolet. The two companies partnered to create the series Going There with Ana Gasteyer, hosted by the titular actress and former Saturday Night Live member.
Produced by Ellen DeGeneres’ A Very Good Production and Warner Bros.’ Blue Ribbon Content studio, Going There with Ana Gasteyer debuted its first episode on September 30, 2015 on Yahoo. All nine episodes of the Yahoo series take place in Chevy’s Traverse mid-size SUV model. In each episode, Gasteyer invites various celebrity friends (like former SNL pal Maya Rudolph and The Office’s Jenna Fischer) to run errands with her and discuss the comedic and crazy lives they lead as parents and individuals in the entertainment industry. Gasteyer produces Going There alongside DeGeneres and Jeff Kleeman, while Libby Silverman and Blue Ribbon's Zoe Friedman created the series.
“I wanted to »
- Bree Brouwer
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment has officially announced details for the Blu-ray release of Vacation, which is set to hit shelves on November 3rd.
Pre-order Vacation Via Amazon UK Or Amazon Us
Written and directed by Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley (Horrible Bosses), Vacation stars Ed Helms, Christina Applegate, Leslie Mann, Chris Hemsworth, Skyler Gisondo, Steele Stebbins, Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Charlie Day, and Michael Pena.
The next generation of Griswolds are on the road again for another hilarious, ill-fated family adventure. Following in his father’s footsteps, a grown-up Rusty Griswold (Ed Helms) surprises his wife, Debbie (Christina Applegate), and their two sons with a cross-country road trip back to America’s “favorite family fun park,” Walley World. What could go wrong?
Special Features are set to include:
–Return to Walley World
–The Griswold Odyssey
- Scott J. Davis
Warner Bros.' reboot of the iconic Vacation franchise hit theaters over the Summer, and they've revealed when you'll have the chance to bring the new comedy home with you on blu-ray. Come inside to learn more!
The Griswolds embark on an ill-fated adventure when New Line Cinema’s “Vacation” arrives onto Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital HD. Starring Ed Helms (“The Hangover” films) and Christina Applegate (the “Anchorman” films), “Vacation” marks Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley’s directorial debut. “Vacation” will be available on Blu-ray Combo Pack and DVD from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on November 3. The film will also be available early on Digital HD on October 13.
- email@example.com (Jordan Maison)
Get a comedy right on the big screen and you’re headed for Big Money City on a diamond-encrusted chariot pulled by golden geese. You’ll be the guy/girl who made the world blow hideously-priced popcorn and soda out their nose. And more importantly you can make several movies under the same banner and never be troubled by originality again.
Vacation was such a franchise, lasting so long it actually spanned the centuries between 1983 and 2003. Fuelled by the catchy theme song of Holiday Road by Lindsey Buckingham, the first instalment featured Clark and Ellen Griswold (Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo), just your average, confused, horny American couple looking to give their family the break of a lifetime at a Disney-inspired theme park. National Lampoon provided the source of the original series and now Warner Bros fancies another roll of the dice with a modern take on the concept. »
- Steve Palace
His cult sitcom Community may be over, but his sci-fi cartoon for
Adult Swim proves the mercurial showrunner’s comic experiments are far
Harmontown is a 2014 feature documentary profiling the writer and showrunner Dan Harmon, as he tours his podcast of the same name around the Us. In it, a murderer’s row of comic talent line up to pay their respects to the creator of the dazzlingly overwrought, criminally undervalued sitcom Community. Ben Stiller calls him “kind of a genius”. John Oliver, the British stand-up whom Harmon cast in a recurring guest role on Community, describes him as “a human hand-grenade with a predilection for pulling his own pin out”. Sarah Silverman, who headhunted Harmon to write for her own comedy series The Sarah Silverman Program, sums it up. “I’m his biggest fan,” she says. “And I fired him.”
A mercurial, wild-bearded, apparently abrasive 42-year-old from Wisconsin, »
- Graeme Virtue
Start with the title: Clown Car! may sound like the movie someone will inevitably make about the 2016 presidential campaign, but how about evoking those great Seventies wacky-journey films like Death Race 2000, Vanishing Point or Smokey and the Bandit?
When I raised the question on Twitter, suggestions included All the President's Wanna-Bes, Every Which Way But Left, Cannonball Rug, A Kochwork Orange and the subtly appropriate Hair.
All excellent ideas, and we may have to put the movie name to a separate vote. Right now, though, the more pressing question is »
Released in 1980, Oh! Heavenly Dog starred Chase as a private investigator who is killed after discovering a dead body. Seeing as the afterlife is yet to decide whether he’s destined for Heaven or Hell, he’s given a shot at redemption by returning to Earth as a dog in order to crack the case and solve his own murder.
Hill’s previous credits include Muppets from Space, Alvin and the Chipmunks and Hop, while he was also announced as director on another 80s remake Short Circuit back in 2011, although that project seems to be stuck in development hell.
- Gary Collinson
As the days get darker and the cold winds of Autumn approach, it’s time to look ahead at the upcoming movies set to hit cinemas this Fall.
The huge slate includes the return of the Jedis, the rebirth of Frankenstein and a new age of Good Dinosaurs. These movies will take audiences to a Galaxy Far, Far Away, on a voyage to Mars and to the summit of the world’s highest mountain, Everest.
Here’s our list of the 2015 Fall movies that we can’t wait to see!
The Visit (Sept 11)
Writer/director/producer M. Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense, Signs, Unbreakable) and producer Jason Blum (Paranormal Activity, The Purge and Insidious series) welcome you to Universal Pictures’ The Visit. Shyamalan returns to his roots with the terrifying story of a brother and sister who are sent to their grandparents’ remote Pennsylvania farm for a weeklong trip. »
- Movie Geeks
The 1980s were a magical time, a time when you could make a movie about a private investigator reincarnated as a dog to avoid going to hell. And now it turns out that one of Chevy Chase.s most bizarre movies, Oh! Heavenly Dog, is getting remade. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox 2000 is ramping up development on a new version of Oh! Heavenly Dog. Tim Hill, who re-launched the Alvin and the Chipmunks franchise back in 2007, and helped develop SpongeBob Squarepants, is in line to direct the remake. Dave Johnson will handle the scripting duties, and Temple Hill, the production company behind The Maze Runner franchise, will handle that side of things. As Hill is also responsible for the likes of Muppets from Space, Garfield 2, and the Easter Bunny comedy Hop, so it feels like we.re in for a live-action/animation hybrid when the revamped Oh! Heavenly Dog »
Chevy Chase's 1980 comedy Oh! Heavenly Dog is being remade by Fox 2000.
The cult film focused on a private investigator who is killed, before coming back to life as a dog to solve his own murder.
The story centers on a private investigator who is killed when he discovers a dead body. With his soul's future at stake, he gets a chance for some redemption work when he comes back to Earth as a dog in order to solve his own murder.
Source: THR »
- Garth Franklin
The 1980 Chevy Chase comedy Oh! Heavenly Dog is getting the remake treatment at Fox 2000, with the studio hiring Tim Hill (Hop) to direct. The filmmaker will also co-write the script with Dave Johnson. Temple Hill, the production company behind the young adult franchise The Maze Runner, are producing. The original movie was set up as a starring vehicle for Chevy Chase and his canine co-star Benji, who were equally popular back when the film was made, with the comedy existing solely on the box office draw of its marquee names.
The story centered on a private investigator (Chevy Chase) who is stabbed to death after discovering a dead body. It is decided that he won't go to Heaven or Hell, but instead is sent back to Earth as a dog, tasked with solving his own murder. The original comedy movie also starred Jane Seymour, Omar Sharif and Robert Morley. The dog was played by Benjean, »
This lame return to National Lampoon’s Walley World offers the expected crudity but few laughs
Any film that makes us profoundly nostalgic for the heady days of 1983’s National Lampoon’s Vacation deserves an award for services to the rose-tinting industry. So, it’s off to Walley World we go again, embarking on a grisly roadtrip with the Griswolds: Next Generation. The presence of Ed Helms (stepping into Chevy Chase’s shoes) presumably explains the preponderance of knob/ass/rim-job jokes, but it’s hard to imagine even Hangover fans being satisfied by such middling vulgarity. What scant laughs are on offer are all spoiled in the trailer; a sequence that finds the Griswolds swimming in shit lasts less than 20 seconds (set-up and pay-off) in the promo but a languorous 10 minutes on screen, and as always the shorter version is funnier. Original stars Chase and Beverly D’Angelo make wearisome cameos, »
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
All homophobic, xenophobic, scatological grossout, with some rape and pedophilia “jokes” for flavor. How did this happen? I’m “biast” (pro): have hazy good memories of the 1980s films…
I’m “biast” (con): …but really tired of reboot fever
(what is this about? see my critic’s minifesto)
For those playing along at home, we’ve gone from — in the 1983 movie Vacation — the comedic stylings of Harold Ramis (director), John Hughes (screenwriter), and Chevy Chase (star) to — in this new sequel/reboot — the desperate flailings of John Francis Daley and Jonathan M. Goldstein (writer-directors) and Ed Helms (star). Vacation is yet another example of screenwriters with no experience directing features being given the keys to a studio film, which is one of those great Hollywood tricks that defies all sense. And never mind the directing job! Daley and Goldstein are counterindicated just to write the script alone: they »
- MaryAnn Johanson
It’s another Friday, and as we all breathe a sigh of relief as the weekend looms, take five minutes to check out the films opening in cinemas in the UK and the Us today. As always, we’ve reviewed and rated them for you (where possible), and also posted links to our more detailed, full reviews.
Check back next week to see how all of these did at the box-office
Synopsis: Remembering fond, childhood memories of his trip to Walley World, Rusty Griswold (Ed Helms) surprises his wife (Christina Applegate) and two sons with a cross-country excursion to America’s favorite fun park. Following in his father’s (Chevy Chase) footsteps, Rusty and the gang pack up the car and hit the road for some much-needed family bonding. Soon, the promise of fun turns into one misadventure after another for the next generation of Griswolds and anyone who encounters them. »
- Paul Heath
Rusty Griswold takes his own family on a road trip to “Walley World” in order to spice things up with his wife and reconnect with his sons.
In order to discuss the faults found within Vacation, the frankly unneeded rehash of what even 20 years ago felt tired, we need to first come to terms with the current state of American comedy. Over at Every Frame a Painting Tony Szhou studies Edgar Wright’s use of framing, camera movement and music to further enhance comedy. Even those at the very top of the American comic food chain – Adam McKay, Judd Apatow and (to a far lesser extent) Adam Sandler – succeed in the creation of jokes »
- Gary Collinson
The not-so-eagerly-awaited return of National Lampoon’s Vacation franchise makes us realise how much we didn’t miss it
A hugely moderate, massively average and colossally middling road-trip comedy spinning off from the not especially well-loved National Lampoon Vacation films of the 80s, which starred Chevy Chase as the guy trying to haul his wife and kids off on various holidays. Ed Helms plays Rusty, Chevy’s now middle-aged son, married to that stalwart comedy trouper Christina Applegate, and he’s planning to replicate his dad’s epic car journey to a distant theme park with his two feisty boys. (Chase himself briefly lumbers onto the screen for a look-away-now cameo as the original character, now an unfunnily shortsighted granddad.)
Continue reading »
- Peter Bradshaw
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