Tag Archives: christian slater

Pump Up the Volume (film)

Pump Up the Volume is a 1990 film written and directed by Allan Moyle about a high school kid with his own pirate radio station. Christian Slater stars as Mark Hunter, a shy kid by day and a vigilante DJ by night. Mark is a loner and a loser at school, but each night he transforms into Happy Harry Hard-on and voices his complaints about his school and community. His opinions get him loyal followers and his show gets increasingly popular. He’s too controversial so the parents, faculty, and the FCC decide to shut him down, but not before he exposes the corrupt principal and encourages his followers to “talk hard.” Really. “Talk hard” is one of the taglines of the film. It’s even on the poster.

I used to watch this movie on TV as a kid. I finally got around to seeing the actual movie, uncut and without commercials, and it’s much better. Happy Harry Hard-on swears excessively, talks about cock rings, and pretends to masturbate on the air. Plus you get to see boobies. Remember that terrible Super Mario Bros. movie? Remember Princess Daisy in that? You get to see her boobs. And they pop up unexpectedly too. That’s the best kind of boob scene: when you’re not expecting anything and then BAM! Boobs.

Pump Up the Volume is about a teenager questioning the world and demanding answers. That’s why it’s still relevant to this day. Only now people have Facebook, YouTube, and a million other ways to make their voices heard on the Internet. They don’t need to hijack radio waves and piss off the FCC. 20 years ago teenagers had no voice. The Internet gave them one. Now they can’t shut up about Justin Beiber.

Critically Rated at 11/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

Leave a comment

Filed under Entertainment

TV Shows are Better than Movies

Movies used to be the premier form of Hollywood entertainment. They were the pinnacle. They had the best actors, the best directors, the best stories, and the best effects. But then HBO started making their own shows. They had the budget to hire quality actors to portray quality characters. Characters are the most important part of storytelling. If you don’t care about the character, then you don’t care about what happens to them. And a TV series allows a character to get developed over multiple episodes and seasons. You get to know their personality, their quirks, their pet peeves, and you feel like you truly know them.

AMC has a lot of amazing character based dramas, like Mad Men and Breaking Bad, with interesting characters and intriguing storylines. The Walking Dead not only has great characters but also feels like a zombie movie that never ends. And it has more graphic and creative zombie deaths than anything in the movies. There are shows like True Blood that are extremely sexual and violent and Spartacus (which makes True Blood seem like a family show). The quality writing on television is extended to Cartoon Network. Even the worst season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars is better than anything the prequel trilogy has to offer.

In the old days, any actor could be on TV but only a few actors could transition to the big screen and be a box office draw. Now movie stars want to be on television. The Simpsons and Scrubs are famous for their celebrity cameos and guest roles. Former Hollywood heavyweights like Keifer Sutherland got a career boost by turning to TV. Dustin Hoffman, Steve Buscemi, and Sean Bean put aside film opportunities to star in HBO shows. Kevin Spacey, Christian Slater, William H. Macy, Alec Baldwin, Kathy Bates, Zooey Deschanel, Danny DeVito, Christina Ricci, Laura Linney, Don Cheadle, and Glenn Close have all chosen television over film. Who needs to go to the theater with that kind of star power available on a weekly basis?

With HBO hits like The Sopranos and Sex in the City, other networks started paying more attention to quality programming. Premium cable channels like Starz and Showtime stepped up their game. Basic cable networks like FX and AMC had to keep up and they did. And the major networks took note and started taking more risks. We get shows as diverse as Lost and Community and everybody wins. The production quality and star power of television shows is only going to increase. It’s a good time to be a couch potato with a Netflix subscription.

Critically Rated at 16/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

Leave a comment

Filed under Entertainment