Friday, June 28, 2019

Grossest Films, Part Next-To-First

What would the list of the 100 top-grossing films of all time (adjusted for inflation) look like if Almost the Truth had done the final edits? Here's the second 25...

The Godfarter (1972)  -  An origin story on methane emissions.
Forrest Lump (1994)  -  A mentally-challenged man gets breast cancer.
Merry Pop-ins (1964)  -  Four separate storylines about happy, unplanned visits.
Crease (1978)  -  An homage to those carefree days of being a tailor in the 1950s.
Marvel's The Extenders (2012)  -  A group of superheroes finds a way to stretch a single idea into several full-length features.
Black Panter (2018)  -  An homage to those stress-filled days of being an African-American tailor in the 1950s.
Blunderball (1965)  -  A collection of James Bond bloopers: "Shaken, not slurred."
The Dark Night (2008)  -  Ninety minutes of extremely underexposed film.
The Jungle Hook (1967)  -  The highly-anticipated sequel to Peter Pan where Captain Hook and the crew move inland.
Weeping Beauty (1959)  -  Prince Charming is unfaithful to Aurora.
Avengers: Infinity and Beyond War (2018)  -  The crossover blockbuster where Marvel meets Pixar.

Post-rusters (1984)  -  The horror-comedy about former SNL stars trying to keep full-bladdered dogs away from metal posts.
Shuck 2 (2004)  -  The ever-popular green ogre returns; this time, he learns how to prepare ears of corn for boiling.
Butch Cassidy and the Undunce Kid (1969)  -  Professional tutoring in the Old West.
Glove Story (1970)  -  An old-money Harvard man woos and weds a no-money, dying music student who never lets him see her hands.
Spider-Han (2002)  -  Harrison Ford stars as a space cowboy who gets bitten by a radioactive arachnid.
Independence May (1996)  -  How the U.S. might be different if the Declaration of Independence had been signed two months earlier.
Comb Alone (1990)  -  The sad tale of a barber with no customers during the Christmas holiday.
Storm Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Weathercaster (2017)  -  Luke Skywalker predicts his final rain of terror.
P. N. O'cchio (1940)  -  An Irish puppet turns into a real boy.

Flee, oh Padre! (1963)  -  Elizabeth Taylor stars as a beautiful Egyptian priest running from snakes.
Beverly Hills Mop (1984)  -  Eddie Murphy goes from swabbing the floors of Detroit bars to a high-class mansion-cleaning service in California.
Inedibles 2 (2018)  -  The continuing story of superheroes that normal people just can't swallow.
Coldfinger (1964)  -  James Bond battles a villain who kills his victims by freezing.
Hairport (1970)  -  A wacky comedy set in the world's busiest beauty salon.

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Friday, June 21, 2019

Grossest Films, Part First

What would the list of the 100 top-grossing films of all time (adjusted for inflation) look like if Almost the Truth had done the final edits? Here's the first 25...

Groan With the Wind (1939)  -  A talkative stand-up comic from the South isn't really all that funny.
Vatican Wars: Episode IV - A New Pope (1977)  -  "The Force be with you." "And also with you."
The Sound of Mucus (1965)  -  ♫ "My nose is aliiiiive, and it's pretty runny." ♪♫
E. H. The Extra-Hysterical (1982)  -  A large-headed, turtle-with-no-shell throws a big fit.
TiePanic (1997)  -  A haberdasher stops at nothing to get his men's accessory samples off a sinking ship.
The Ten Condiments (1956)  -  A tasty movie about mustard, ketchup, mayonnaise, chutney, Nutella, olive oil, salsa, soy sauce, horseradish, and jalapenos.
Jews (1975)  -  Unusually large Holocaust survivors wreak havoc in a New England beach resort town: "You're gonna need a bigger yarmulke."
Doctor Chicago (1965)  -  The exciting prequel to Doctor Detroit.
The Extra Cyst (1973)  -  A young Linda Blair is tortured by a closed, bladderlike sac: "Mother! Make it pop!"
Betty White and the Seven Dorks (1937)  -  Iconic American actress is befriended by a group of social misfits.

Star Bars: Episode VII - The Martini is Shaken (2015)  -  Sean Connery's favorite watering hole knows exactly how he likes his cocktails.
101 PalMartians (1961)  -  A pair of very friendly aliens have 99 offspring.
Ball Wars: Episode V - The Umpire Hikes Back (1980)  -  After a spirited interchange at home plate, a baseball official takes a long walk to the dressing room.
Ben-Her (1959)  -  A slave in ancient Israel becomes the world's first transsexual.
Avatart (2009)  -  A genetically-engineered Na'vi body operated by the brain of a remotely-located human is quite the saucy wench.
Star Warts: Episode VI - Return of the Papomavirus (1983)  -  Luke Skywalker discovers a strange bump on his bionic hand.
Jurassic Prank (1993)  -  A rogue T-Rex pulls a practical joke on its unsuspecting victims.
Star Bore: Episode I - The Circadian Menace (1999)  -  Unending talk about midichlorians and politics puts everyone to sleep.
Pretenders: Endgame (2019)  -  Large group of big-name actors becomes too expensive to continue popular film franchise.
The Lying King (1994)  -  A politician will say whatever it takes to retain power.

The Sling (1973)  -  Newman & Redford star as a couple of conmen pretending to have been injured in a minor accident.
Raters of the Lost Ark (1981)  -  Siskel and Ebert give Noah's boat two thumbs up.
The Gradually (1967)  -  It takes a while, but Dustin Hoffman eventually realizes Mrs. Robinson is on the prowl.
Fan Asia (1940)  -  Temperature regulation goes old-school from China to Vietnam, all set to classical music.
Jurassic Whirled (2015)  -  Dinosaurs take over a theme park and get sick riding the octopus.

Friday, June 14, 2019

What Really Happened Under the Boardwalk

I'm told by those who should know that The Drifters didn't just drift into recording the 1964 Number 4 hit, "Under the Boardwalk" (#487 of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time). It was, no doubt, a slow and purposeful walk into the studio that day.

Why? Allow me to quote Rolling Stone:

Released in June 1964 and replayed on beach-town jukeboxes every summer since, "Under the Boardwalk" evokes the carefree sounds of the shore. But its recording was no day at the beach. Johnny Moore was drafted to sing lead because the track's original singer, Rudy Lewis, died of a heroin overdose in his hotel room the night before the session.

Oh, when the sun beats down and the cops chase you from the roof
You've gotta hide your stash so the Man won't find him any proof
Under the boardwalk, down by the sea, yeah
Under a blanket on the sand is where it'll be

(Under the boardwalk) Clean out of sight
(Under the boardwalk) Gotta bury it right
(Under the boardwalk) Coppers searching above
(Under the boardwalk) When push comes to shove
Under the boardwalk, boardwalk

Go ahead. YOU try to make people grin about a heroin overdose.

Friday, June 7, 2019

False Advertising: A Poem

Just sit right back and you'll hear a tale
A tale of a fateful trip
That started at the start, of course,
When Bill said, "Let 'er rip!"

The engines roared; the tires squealed
The air was filled with smoke
The cars lurched forward but soon found
The whole thing was a joke

"A Race Across the Country!"
Said the posters and the pins
But it stopped just as it started
And Bill said, "No one wins!"

The angry crowd arose as one
Demanding satisfaction
To save his life, Bill soon became
A daring man of action

He ran, he jumped, he stole a car
He soon was out of sight
And no one ever heard from him
Not then, nor any night

One would hope a tale like this
Would end with some grand point
But hey, it's made up on the spot
In hopes you'd fill this joint

And yes, you've come, you've read, you've groaned
And, no doubt, now repent
Of ever having opened this
And all the time you've spent