Archives for posts with tag: John Travolta

Back in 1981, Brian De Palma was right in the middle of his run as The Next Hitchcock and John Travolta was close to peak stardom. They teamed up for a classic that mixes murder mystery, political conspiracy and a look behind the scenes of low-budget filmmaking. The camerawork goes for a lot of home run shots (but swings and misses sometimes). We get introduced to John Lithgow and Dennis Franz. What’s not to like? “Blow Out” was one of the first movies that made me understand how much I loved good movies (and curly redheads – thank you, Nancy Allen).

I remember the book “The Taking of Pelham One Two Three” because it sat on the back of the commode in my parents’ bathroom for something like five years. I don’t remember the 1974 movie (I was eight years old). The 2009 version, “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3” (One Two Three? That’s too many words – things are faster paced these days.), is a sometimes-too-stylish, quirky thriller about a subway hostage/ransom event with an interesting criminal twist. Not bad, but when someone asks, “Can you name 10 Denzel Washington movies?” I doubt this one will come to your mind.

My dad likes movies like “Killing Season” (2013). Couple of ex-military guys, out in the woods, trying to kill each other. Macho stuff. Robert DeNiro and John Travolta star in this variation of “The Most Dangerous Game.” The backstory is the Serbian (or Bosnian) war. Travolta has an accent worthy of Count Chocula. The setting is Appalachia. DeNiro attempts a southern accent. Sometimes. There’s lots of action and cool, survivalist-type stuff worthy of Rambo. There’s also one of my pet peeves – a spectacular car wreck in which nobody seems to get hurt. War is hell. Car wrecks, not so much.