Aug 19 2011

#111 “Teen Wolf”

From a stranger in Chattanooga, TN

You just can’t top an outlandish 1980s teen comedy flick. And there’s no better example than the perennial “Teen Wolf.” Overall, I think this illustration serves as a great accompaniment to the film. As you can see, this drawing appears to be inspired by the movie masterpiece, but it is not necessarily “about” the film. We can see the inspiration in the flashiness of the color which simply screams 1980s and the wildness of the strokes with which this drawing is composed. Nothing says 80s indulgence and excess like pop art with unusual and random angles that reach out towards you like lightning bolts.

Just in case you haven’t laid eyes on this piece of cinema gold in a while. You can check out the original trailer below.

Aug 15 2011

#107 “Sloth”

From E.B. in Little Rock, Arkansas

I can easily remember that as a child a movie called “The Goonies” represented everything about the world that I hoped (and believed) to be true.

In the film a group of prepubescent protagonists are faced with a crisis: the home of a young Goonie has being foreclosed. I remember the outrage and disgust I felt as I tried to understand how some unknown entity could have the right to barge in and forcibly take someone’s home. At the same time, though, I longed for an obstacle to overcome in my own life. I desperately searched for a trial to test the mettle of my infantile courage. In short, I wanted a threshold to cross into manhood, just like the Goonies.

As the film unfolds, several members of the Goonie clan are swept into an underground adventure after inadvertently discovering a treasure map and angering a group of wanted criminals. A chase ensues and the race against the clock is under way, and children must find the treasure of the notorious pirate One-Eyed Willie if they are going to save their home; but of course they must do so without being caught and killed by the notorious outlaws.

Overall the plot of the movie is totally outrageous and completely unbelievable, but this is entirely why I had such an affinity for it. I longed for adventure and danger as every young boy does to this day. I prayed that a journey of Indiana Jones proportions would fall into my lap just as it had for the children of “The Goonies.” The booby traps, the dangerous obstacles, the idea of being a part of a tight-nit group that was forced to pull together to prevail over evil, the feeling that you truly belonged to something greater than yourself- It was what I wanted, nay, what I needed in life.

In the end, the adventure never really came, but life has become an adventure all by itself. And if nothing else, this project has been an adventure- a journey of unpredictable twists and turns that has filled the last several months of my life with triumph and heartbreak.

I may never have had the opportunity to run through underground tunnels as booby traps snapped around me and dangerous bandits fired pistols over my head, but I did take something way from the film which was much more meaningful. For as any connoisseur of great film will know, “The Goonies” is not just an adventure tale. It is a story of acceptance and serves as a humbling reminder to accept the differences that we all possess.

Case in point, of course, is the beloved character of Sloth. Oh, Sloth, how you warmed my soul. You taught me these lessons that I will never forget. You taught me that Goonies never say day.

Sloth, I love you.

And with that, my friends, I will leave you with one of the greatest quotes of the 1980s.

“Hey, you guys!”

Jun 4 2011

#35 “The Fox/Wolf Connection”


From Dan in Utah

Many people may be staring at this picture in bewilderment this very second and asking aloud, “What the heck does a wolf have to do with Back to the Future? I asked this same question when I first received this illustration in the mail, but then it dawned on me… there is in fact a common link, and that link is none other than the acclaimed actor Michael J. Fox. How could I have overlooked it? It’s so obvious… For you see, Michael J. Fox not only starred in Back to the Future, but he also played in perhaps the most well-known werewolf movie in popular culture in the last 30 years: Teen Wolf.

When I discovered this connection, a smirk of pride passed over my countenance. I was pleased to have solved this little riddle, but after a little time a trickle of uncertainty began to seep into my brain, and before long a deluge of doubt had flooded my mind. As it turns out, after poring over mounds of Michael J. Fox related literature, I discovered that the relationship between the “Fox” and the wolf runs deeper than most would imagine. Peruse the information below if your curiosity is piqued, but don’t say I didn’t warn you. These correlations may be too profound for those who lack a strong mental fortitude. Head to the kitchen and grab a napkin if you must; you may start bleeding from your ears.

  • Michael J. Fox was born in 1961. This same year, the French film The Miracle of the Wolves was released in France and the world was forever changed.
  • Fox was born in Canada, a nation that is second only to Russian in its number of wolves. Coincidence?
  • During the 1990s Fox starred in the television show Spin City which featured the actor Scott Wolf in several episodes as well as the actor Maurice Godin who played a character known as Trevor Wolfe.
  • Michael J. Fox and the actor Scott Wolf bear a striking resemblance to one another.
  • Michael J. Fox voiced the character of a dog (canis lupis familiaris) in the movie “Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey.” Anyone else see a connection here to the wolf (canis lupis)?
  • The horror film The Company of Wolves was released on DVD in 2002, the same year that Fox released his memoir, Lucky Man. Also, the original version of the film as released in 1985, the same year that Fox starred in Back to the Future.
  • In 2007, Fox was listed by TIME Magazine as one of 100 people “whose power, talent or moral example is transforming the world.” If this set of characteristics doesn’t remind you of a wolf, I’m not sure what will. This is also the same year that the short drama Wolf was released, starring Max Moody, Burton Cox and Corine Samwel.
  • In March of last year Fox was given an honorary doctorate degree by the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden. Just last month, roughly one year later, in the same county in Sweden a 45-year-old woman and her child were confronted by a wolf on a wooded path. The wolf attacked the family dog and carried it into the woods as his prey. Just happenstance, you say? Don’t be naive.
  • Fox starred in a campaign ad for Claire McCaskill in 1996 in which he openly supported the use of stem cell research. Some might say this is a result of Fox’s being diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. I say this is just another covert attempt by Fox to generate a master race of wolves in Missouri in order to take over the USA and allow Canada to absorb our nation.

In conclusion, I’ve never been one to support conspiracy theories, but when the evidence is overwhelming, sometimes there is simply no other conclusion to be reached. To strive for the deeper meaning, though, takes courage, heart, and a sense of adventure. So let this be a lesson to you: Don’t tread on the monotonous highways of the dull-minded and unsophisticated, but seek to stride upon the paths of the scholarly and cerebral, because “where we’re going, we don’t need roads.”