Something Wild

Something Wild. Orion Pictures 1986.
Something Wild. Orion Pictures 1986.

Before watching the movie:

Here’s something lighter after the last couple of weeks. Jeff Daniels plays an office drone who gets kidnapped into an adventure by a woman with his polar opposite personality.

This was an automatic suggestion I’d never heard of before. Sometime I ought to just rifle through Jeff Daniels’ filmography, since I keep finding interesting stuff I never knew he was in.

The poster style makes me think it’s from earlier in the 80s than it is, but everything I can point to as to why could also apply to the early 90s.

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Arachnophobia

Arachnophobia. Amblin Entertainment 1990.
Arachnophobia. Amblin Entertainment 1990.

Before watching the movie:

I always had the impression that this movie was a horror/monster film, but actually looking at the promotional material, it seems more like a disaster drama in the style of Outbreak, where the disease is more of a force than a monster. In this movie, it appears people are dying of bites from a rare spider, and the experts have to contain the spider. It doesn’t even seem to be an uncanny spider (which would make it more monsterish), just an exotic one.

Jeff Daniels headlines this movie, and I continue to realize how broad his filmography is. At one time, I knew him exclusively as a comedy actor (though I was young enough to confuse him with Dave Coulier), and I think he’s still best known for Dumb and Dumber, but at this point I think I’ve seen him in more serious roles. But maybe I’m assuming too much with this movie.

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The Purple Rose of Cairo

The Purple Rose of Cairo. Orion Pictures Corporation 1985.
The Purple Rose of Cairo. Orion Pictures Corporation 1985.

Before watching the movie:

I don’t think I’ve seen a Woody Allen movie he didn’t star in yet. Well, depending on how much What’s Up, Tiger Lilly? counts.Oddly, this is a metafictional fantasy about crossing the barrier between film and reality, but it feels more traditional than I expect from Allen. I’m expecting a more traditional performance from Jeff Daniels, too, despite the fact that he’s a fictional character who’s walked off the silver screen.

One thing I’m uncertain about in my expectations is the inner movie’s style. I’m imagining a golden age of Hollywood feel, but that was the 40s at the earliest, and this movie is set in the 30s. I’m much less familiar with films of the 30s.

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Escanaba in da Moonlight

Escanaba In Da Moonlight. Purple Rose Productions 2000.
Escanaba In Da Moonlight. Purple Rose Productions 2001.

Before watching the movie:

Jeff Daniels plays a hunter who has to end his dry spell soon, prompting a change of habits or superstitions or something. Weird things happen. I really don’t know what to expect.

I think this started as a play, since I recall first hearing of it as a community theater production.

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Trial and Error

Trial and Error. New Line Cinema 1997.

Before watching the movie:

Michael Richards possibly trying to break (back) into film. Jeff Daniels, being Jeff Daniels. Courtroom comedy. I’m going in on the assumption that the main reason I never heard of this is the lack of starpower. The writing probably won’t be superb, but it ought to be fun for what it is.

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