Archives for posts with tag: Ivan Reitman

Daryl Hannah is quite fetching and few can blame Robert Redford for not kicking her out of bed (even though it’s a ridiculously obvious violation of legal ethics) in “Legal Eagles” (1986). But if you can find a woman that looks at you the way Debra Winger looks at Redford, you make her your co-counsel and never let her go. Otherwise, the film is another one of those dopey 1980s lawyer movies that bear no resemblance to actual lawyering. Writer/director Ivan Reitman has Redford and Winger defend Hannah, who’s accused of murdering someone(s?) over a generation-old, art-world grudge. Hijinks ensue.

Trivia question – name Bill Murray’s first starring movie role. Do you remember “Meatballs” (1979)? A no-name director (Ivan Reitman) conceived a cheaply made summer camp comedy in which Murray is an endearingly subversive mentor to a bunch of hormone-addled “counselors in training.” It’s mostly childish humor interspersed with Murray’s improv-style riffs that were put to much better use by Reitman in “Ghostbusters.” There’s a sweetly developed subplot in which Murray befriends a lonely camper, which helps make it an actual movie and not just a string of gags. Ultimately, it rode Murray and his burgeoning stardom to box office success.

Generation Xers got screwed out of a lot of things, not the least of which was animation. Boomers and Millennials got Bugs Bunny, Pixar and Disney classics (“Pinocchio,” “Lion King,” etc.). We got Scrappy Doo and “Heavy Metal.” For whatever reason, Ivan Reitman thought 1981 was the right time for an animated anthology featuring the four food groups for 14-year-old Xer boys: weapons of war, rock and roll, purple eye shadow and huge breasts. The animation is typical of the early 1980s – artistic yet awful. The story is also typical – some kind of high-minded pacifism shrouded in blood and boobs.