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THE GARBAGE PAIL KIDS MOVIE, Anthony Newley (l.), Mackenzie Astin (back), 1987, ©Atlantic Releasing Corp.

A famous poet once said:

You take the good…

You take the bad…

You take them both and there you have…the facts of life. 

And in 1986, these were the facts of life for an ambitious child actor by the name of Mackenzie Astin: He was 14 years old, he was dating a beautiful teenage actress and he had recently been promoted to series regular of a popular sitcom called—you guessed it—The Facts of Life.

Everything was going great for Mackenzie, but there was just one problem: things were going even better for his older brother, Sean, who had just finished working with Steven Spielberg and Richard Donner on a little film called The Goonies.

And so, almost as if inspired by his brother’s speech in The Goonies, Mackenzie Astin asked himself: when’s it gonna be my time? When am I gonna get to star in a blockbuster movie of my own? And, just as these feelings of sibling rivalry reached a crescendo, such an opportunity seemed to come around: The Garbage Pail Kids Movie. Wow, Mackenzie thought. A whole movie based on those cool, subversive trading cards! How could this possibly go wrong?

Well it did. In almost every single conceivable way. So I sat down with Mackenzie Astin to recount that traumatic cinematic experience and the ripples that would follow…

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1492 CONQUEST OF PARADISE

(Welcome to Seeing Double, a series where two strangely similar films released around the same time are put head-to-head. This time: 1992’s Christopher Columbus: The Discovery and 1492: Conquest of Paradise.)

Hollywood is a land of mystery. Who killed the Black Dahlia? Was Marisa Tomei the real winner of 1993’s Best Supporting Actress Oscar? Are TV shows just really long movies?

One of the less salacious and controversial mysteries to come out of Hollywood though involves the occasional appearance of “movie doubles” – films from rival studios with highly similar plots/subjects that are released in close proximity to each other. Think Volcano and Dante’s Peak or Deep Impact and Armageddon. There’s little upside to both studios sticking to their guns and moving forward with the production as history shows that, more often than not, one of the pair falls by the wayside at the box-office, so why even head into production on a film you know another studio has already begun? Are original ideas that hard to come by in Hollywood? (This is a rhetorical question.)

This year is the 25th anniversary of both Christopher Columbus: The Discovery and 1492: Conquest of Paradise, two films released in 1992 to coincide with the 500th anniversary of the famed adventurer’s voyage and “discovery” of America. Comparing the films reveals the expected similarities, but they still have their individual pros and cons. You’re probably already feeling pretty confident in thinking which of the two came out on top – because odds are many of you don’t even remember the other one – but that memory might be somewhat deceiving.

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Ivan Drago in Creed 2

In this edition of Sequel Bits:

  • Rocky IV star Dolph Lundgren is preparing for Creed 2
  • A zombie version of Adolf Hitler will appear in Dead Snow 3
  • Boo 2! A Madea Halloween gets a new trailer
  • Narcos and Game of Thrones star Pedro Pascal joins Denzel Washington in The Equalizer 2
  • And more!

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Samurai Jack Returning

Earlier this year, Adult Swim brought us the fifth and final season of the acclaimed Emmy-winning animated series Samurai Jack. After an initial run that lasted from 2001 through 2004, the series from Genndy Tartakovsky disappeared for 13 years, only to be revived to finish the story of the titular samurai’s battle with the shapeshifting demon called Aku. Soon you’ll be able to have every episode of the series in high-definition.

Cartoon Network and Adult Swim have have announced a Samurai Jack complete series box set that will have the first four initial seasons of the series as well as the final fifth season from the revival earlier this year. Though the first four seasons have been available on DVD for awhile now, this marks the first time they’ll be available on Blu-ray.

Find out more about the Samurai Jack complete series box set below. Read More »

Morning Watch - Michael Bolton's Game of Thrones Theme

(The Morning Watch is a recurring feature that highlights a handful of noteworthy videos from around the web. They could be video essays, fanmade productions, featurettes, short films, hilarious sketches, or just anything that has to do with our favorite movies and TV shows.)

In this edition, listen to Michael Bolton‘s theme song for Game of Thrones, as if the series were a cheesy drama from the early 1990s. Plus, a video essay for Christopher Nolan‘s Memento takes a closer look at telling a story in reverse and Futurama voice star Billy West reenacts a scene from Back to the Future as Fry and Professor Farnsworth.

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The Best of the /Filmcast: Vol. 1

chappie

This week, we bring you two of our favorite reviews from the archives: our reviews of Transformers: The Age of Extinction and Chappie.

You can always e-mail us at slashfilmcast(AT)gmail(DOT)com, or call and leave a voicemail at 781-583-1993. Also, like us on Facebook!
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horror movies for kids

In 2017, beloved movies and television shows don’t die – they just hibernate. We knew that Tremors was coming back as a television series on Syfy and we knew that it would see the return of Kevin Bacon‘s Valentine McKee, but now we know who will help usher forward the small screen continuation of this (pretty darn great) horror adventure: director Vincenzo Natali.

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A Cast of Kings S7E06 – Beyond the Wall

beyond the wall
Joanna and David discuss the sixth episode of the seventh season of Game of Thrones, “North of the Wall.” Be sure to read Joanna’s recap of the episode, Alison Herman’s recap of the episode, and Jacob Hall’s recap of the episode.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Listen to the episode below.

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The Punisher #218 - War Machine Armor

How does Yondu‘s death in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 impact Sean Gunn‘s character Kraglin? Will we see the members of The Defenders cross over into each others’ shows more often now? How would you like to eat a bucket of popcorn out of Hulk‘s fist? Want to see a bunch of Marvel movies in theaters again starting this weekend? All that and more in this edition of Superhero Bits. Read More »

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

Black Samurai TV show

Starz isn’t on the same level as a powerhouse premium service like HBO, but they’re still one of the big players in that space, and they’ve recently made waves by catering to underserved audiences with shows like Power and Outlander (not to mention the splash they made this year with their adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods). Now they’re looking to get into the blaxploitation genre with a TV adaptation of Black Samuari, and they’ve found the perfect person to star: Common, who kicked some serious ass in John Wick: Chapter 2.
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