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Movie Rewind

Looking Back: Ed Wood (1994)

As Tim Burton’s latest work, “Big Eyes,” opens nationwide, it gives long time fans a chance to note their favorite films from this popular and prolific filmmaker. Burton, along with David Lynch, brought surrealism and expressionist filmmaking into mainstream America. Of equal importance is how Tim Burton managed to make large budget studio works that never lost the vision, personality, …

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Looking Back: The Green Mile (1999)

Seeing “The Green Mile” for the first time is such a strange, challenging experience. Few three-hour prison dramas had this amount of goodwill hanging over them: writer/director Frank Darabont was once again adapting a Stephen King drama to the big screen, his previous directing credit being “The Shawshank Redemption.” That film, which flopped in theaters, became a cult phenomenon and …

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Looking Back: Nothing Lasts Forever (1984)

For most of my childhood, this was the one, the film I chased for years and could never find. Being an enormous fan of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd, it was the sole film listed in their body of work I had never seen. While it was (barely) released in 1984, I could never acquire any new information on the …

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Looking Back: Star Trek: Generations (1994)

You could always tell when a big event movie was opening on Maui if the lines were exceptionally long. In the days before movies playing on multiple theaters or online tickets providing guaranteed seating, Maui movie lovers would have to wait in long, long lines which sometimes wrapped around the theater in question more than once. Since this column is …

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Looking Back: Prancer (1989)

Here’s a Christmas-themed family film that won’t make you gag on syrupy, cutesy gobs of sugar coated whimsy. In fact, director John Hancock’s film has a grit and honesty highly unusual for a movie about one of Santa’s lost reindeer. Set in a small farming town, a plucky young girl named Jessica (Rebecca Harrell Tickell) discovers an injured reindeer and …

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Looking Back: Fred Savage Double Feature! Little Monsters (1989) and The Wizard (1989)

On Television, Fred Savage was an American Everyman, standing in for every awkward school kid who tripped over themselves the first time they fell in love, didn’t connect with their father or tried and failed to be “cool.” In “The Wonder Years,” Savage made this struggle a once a weeknight event, as his natural, blindingly charismatic and effortlessly authentic and …

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Looking Back: Miracle on 34th St. (1994)

Let’s just get it out of the way: the 1994 remake of “Miracle on 34th St.” isn’t as good as the original. There was never a question of whether a new version of the 1947 holiday classic could match or surpass what came before it. Those determined to dismiss the second cinematic telling of the Valentine Davies story likely aren’t …

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Looking Back: Back to the Future Part II (1989)

How big a deal was it when “Back to the Future Part II” opened on Maui 25 years ago? The Lahaina Cinemas, which housed the local premiere, ran this notice in their show times section: “Auditorium #1 is being readied for the opening of Back to the Future 2, Coming on November 22nd.” Whoa. Of course, being a young boy, …

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Looking Back: Brainscan (1994)

I really had no plans to write about “Brainscan,” the CD-ROM (remember those?) themed thriller from twenty years back. My dear friend Lisa asked me if I’d write about it and she’s a hard person to say no to. I normally don’t take requests when I write a column, though the film in question came out in one of the …

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Looking Back: The ‘Burbs (1989)

A couple of years ago, I took my dog on a walk and caught one of my neighbors digging a hole in their back yard. I wouldn’t have thought much of it, except it was 11 o’clock at night and he was shoveling fiercely. My leashed dog was pulling me back to my house (even she seemed weirded out) and …

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