films

Silver Scream: Our Friday the 13th Boneyard of Horror!

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Friday the 13th in October means one thing: a marathon of frightening films (or in my case, a corny Halloween movie binge). Whichever genre you prefer, take a peek at some of our favorite spooky flicks (and podcasts!)from the good, to the bad, to the downright bone-chilling. And while you’re at it, avoid walking under any ladders today.—Stephanie Schaefer

Daniel Ford: Tomorrow's Friday the 13th, which means something horrible will likely befall Sean Tuohy and myself.  

Before the inevitable hot-coffee-spills-in-lap scenario, we want to know what your favorite Halloween/scary movie is and why! (Question from the desk of Stephanie Schaefer.)

Sean Tuohy: Doesn't some horrible happen to us every day?

I mean just this morning I experienced the worse thing ever: I woke up.

Here are some of my favorites:

“Halloween”

Besides being a classic and one of the first teen slasher films, “Halloween” is just a creepy movie. It takes its time building up to the final, tension-filled moments. The music alone (which is just a bongo beat switched to a piano) will cause your skin to crawl.

“E.T.”

Look, that scene when the federal agents show up in EVA suits with the blinding white light shining behind them is terrifying. I refuse to watch this scene as an adult.

“Prince Of Darkness”

The middle film of John Carpenter's Apocalypse Trilogy, “Prince Of Darkness” is a "smart man's" horror film. With an original plot line, a great cast, and some horrifying imaginary, this is one of Carpenter's best movies. 

“Friday the 13th: A New Beginning”

Stop rolling your eyes! Yes, this is a blood-soaked teenage slasher film with some really over-the-top deaths but…there are some really scary moments that cause you to jump out of your chair.

“28 Days Later”

From the opening scene in the dark underground lab that shows a young eco-terrorist get infected (what you deserve, you hippie!) to the final rain-soaked fight sequence, “28 Days Later” is one of my favorite modern horror films.

“Phantom Of The Mall”

Paulie Shore is in this movie. Enough said.

Stephanie Schaefer:

“Halloweentown” Series

I’m not a fan of horror movies, but I can get down with a good Disney Channel Halloween flick. Plus, the late Debbie Reynolds made the movie with her portrayal of kooky Grandma Aggie.

**Looking up last-minute flights to Oregon.**

“Hocus Pocus”

How can you not love this cult classic? From “I Put a Spell on You” sing-alongs to talking cats and an all-star cast of witches, its 1990s nostalgia at its finest.

Rob Bates: So, this isn't a movie, but I just started listening to, and am very much enjoying, the Mysterious Old Radio Listening Society Podcast, where three dudes play an old radio show and then afterwards analyze and geek out about it. It's a lot of fun.

I would recommend these episodes, featuring episodes from the truly creative and wildly innovative series “Quiet Please:”

“The Thing on the Fourble Board”

This is one of the most famous old radio episodes out there, and I've kind of grown obsessed with it. (Patton Oswalt is a fan.) The plot is,let me just warn you, completely ridiculous, but you kind of "buy" it,  thanks to the great lead performance by "Porky" as well as the "guest." Also, you learn a ridiculous amount about oil rigging.

“Whence Came You”

I found this one even freakier than Fourble Board, though it does contain one marginally offensive piece of dialogue, which may be why it isn't well known. But it's awesome.

If you want to hear those shows without the before and after commentary, they are both readily available for download on archive.org.

Remember, the show is called “Quiet Please.” Listen in the dark with headphones!

Mike Nelson:

“Sleepaway Camp”

A basic, campy (like, campy-campy, but also literally about camp), mysterious slasher film that is as stupid as possible until the very end when it becomes genuinely stupider than is conceivably possible in the most fantastic way. I refuse to share a clip. Just go watch it and do not look at spoilers, you jerk.

Sean: I am going to second “Sleepaway Camp.” The ending scene and Judy's death scene make the movie. Also, James Earl Jones's father is in the film.

Daniel: “The Omen” is up with all movies that led to sleep loss for me as a teenager. I remembering watching it with my father, who laughed whenever I'd swear at the television or blankly stare at what was going on. Great flick.

Plus, Gregory Peck. I mean, the guy's a legend.

Caitlin Malcuit:

“The Thing”

John Carpenter’s “The Thing” is a perfect horror movie. It’s gross, it’s scary, and has that amazing Drew Struzan poster. A masterful exercise in body horror and paranoia, “The Thing” is best viewed with the lights out so that deep Antarctic chill can creep into your bones. With fantastic and dark performances by Keith David and Wilford Brimley, it’s also a worthwhile viewing because of Kurt Russell’s beautiful mane.

“Suspiria"

Suspiria is visually stunning, arguably the most beautiful horror film ever made. A standout in Italian giallo master Dario Argento’s oeuvre, this entry in his “The Three Mothers” trilogy is one of the last films ever to be printed in Technicolor. The death scenes alone are enough to put 1980s slashers to shame.

“The Witch”

Robert Eggers’ debut couldn’t be a bigger home run for a director. “The Witch,” moody and slow burning, is one of the most pitch-perfect thrillers in recent memory to hit the genre. Though the forests of Ontario stand in for New England’s onscreen, you won’t be able to walk through your neighborhood woods without a side-eye to the rustling leaves or the next rabbit you see.

Rob Masiello: I'm gonna let you all finish, but "Deep Blue Sea" is the greatest horror movie of all time.

Joking aside, I'd like to submit something arty and weird, but instead am going to recommend “The Conjuring.” It's the first time a movie caused me to audibly shriek, and the whole film is elegantly executed. Even the climax, which is often when horror movies lapse into absurdity (not the good kind), is harrowing. Not to mention Vera Farmiga is always a delight to watch. Sadly, after viewing “The Conjuring,” I read an article criticizing it for socially regressive themes. It got me thinking, and I can't say I disagree. But if you're only after a good spook, it's a must-see.

I'll also second Caitlin's recommendation of “The Witch.” It's a slow-burner that spirals into this urgently fucked up fever dream that will haunt you.

Sean: “The Conjuring” was a solid ghost movie. “The Conjuring 2” starts off great and then falls apart at the end.

Rob Masiello: I agree! The second one was a big disappointment. Never as spooky as the original, and some tacky CGI thrown in to boot. And way too much yelling.

Sean: Yes! Halfway through they got lazy and said, "Screw it! We'll do it on a computer.”

Rob Bates: Can I also recommend the original “Wicker Man?” Saw it a few years ago and it has some weird off-key moments (which kind of work for it) and definitely packs a huge punch. Forget the stupid Nicolas Cage remake; I have never seen it but, based on the excerpts I've seen, I don't want to. And remakes usually suck anyway. But this was great.

If you ever watch the show “Coupling,” one of the characters is obsessed with Britt Ekland in this movie, and if you watch it, you will know why.

Also, “Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein” is the supreme horror-comedy. Funny, and even goofy-scary. Can't wait to show it to my kid.

Emili Vesilind: “The Ring!” Couldn't sleep for weeks after seeing it.

“The Nightmare Before Christmas”

Alison Doherty (Writer's Bone newcomer!): This movie is confused. It doesn’t know if it wants to be a Halloween or Christmas movie. Written by Tim Burton, the movie chronicles the adventures of Jack the Skeleton, King of Halloween Town. Jack is overjoyed when he discovers Christmas Town but things go awry when he tries to bring Christmas to Halloween Town.

Hitting the High Notes: The Sequel!

Back in 2014, the Writer’s Bone crew compiled their favorite musical moments in film. After revisiting the post for our newsletter recently, we decided to stage a sequel. If you want to join the discussion, submit your favorite suggestions in the comments section, post them on our Facebook page, or tweet us @WritersBone.—Daniel Ford

“Dick Tracy”

Mike Nelson: Al Pacino’s finest performance (do not @ me) is laced with misogyny and misunderstanding, but not misguidance. The man knows a crappy dance routine when he sees one, and he exposes Madonna so much in this one scene that her next hit is “Ray of Light,” which, let’s be honest, is complete garbage with a nice brand name attached to it.

“The Commitments”

Daniel Ford: The Commitments give The Wonders a run for their money for best fictional rock band that flamed out too early.

“Top Gun”

Stephanie Schaefer: Pre-Scientology Tom Cruise at his finest. 

"Goodfellas"

Caitlin Malcuit: The three-minute tracking sequence in "Goodfellas" is one of the film's most dazzling moments, but the extra touch comes from the use of The Crystal's "Then He Kissed Me." As Henry takes Karen for a night out at the Copacabana nightclub, introducing her, and us, to the perks of organized crime, the girl group's sweetness heightens the rush of a mesmerizing first date.

“Hedwig and the Angry Inch”

Lindsey Wojcik: After the huge success of the revival of "Hedwig and the Angry Inch" on Broadway, which I saw four times, I became a Hedhead and discovered this 2001 release—an adaptation of the stage book, written, directed and starring the original Hedwig, John Cameron Mitchell. The film has so many powerful and catchy songs, but "Origin of Love" is a gut-wrenching ditty based on a story from Plato's Symposium. It's songwriting at its finest—Stephen Trask is a master—and evokes all the feels about what it's like to love. 

“Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid”

Daniel: “What’re you doing?”

“Stealing your woman.”

“Take her.”

“TRON: Legacy”

Mike: Everyone has their motivation tactics at work. Coffee, going outside for some air, doing pushups at your desk (I have seen this happen, and I don’t think it’s that weird, and if you’ve ever seen my arms you know it’s not me), and probably the most common: music. The “TRON: Legacy” soundtrack is mine, and I then turn into Olivia Wilde during this Daft Punk cameo in the movie (meaning, I start absolutely dominating work, and then it fights back and permanently cripples me).

“The Wedding Singer”

Lindsey: "The Wedding Singer" and its soundtrack was the seed that sprouted my never-ending fascination with the culture of the 1980s, a decade in which I was only alive for nearly three years. "Grow Old With You" is one of two only original songs on the soundtrack and it's the sappiest. It perfectly encapsulates what most people are looking for in a partner—someone to share the milestones and monotonous parts of life with for the rest of days. The hilarity of the scene (I'm looking at you, Billy Idol!) does not take away from the sentiment, which is why I consider it of the most powerful musical moments in film.  

“Mulholland Drive”

Rob Masiello: Rumor has it that Rebekah Del Rio's thunderous performance of "Llorando" was recorded on the spot, without her knowledge and with virtually no editing before being worked into “Mulholland Drive.” How it fits into the film's larger narrative is worthy of a much longer analysis than appropriate for this feature. This Spanish cover of Roy Orbison's "Crying" will leave you shaking regardless of what language you speak.

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze”

Mike: School is a waste of time. I learned everything I needed to get through childhood right here.

“Skyfall”

Matt DiVenere: Check out the reintroduction of the 1964 Aston Martin DB5 in “Skyfall.” Seeing the car, hearing the trumpets...I immediately get goosebumps and smile. Such an iconic car and such an iconic moment.

“True Romance”

Dave Pezza: I've been holding on to this magical scene from a highly underrated Quentin Tarantino movie (he wrote the screenplay). It doesn't get much better than Tarantino dialogue in front of a Hans Zimmer score. So cool.

“Hudson Hawk”

Sean Tuohy: What a weird movie, but Bruce Willis can sing. Really, the man has a set of pipes. This scene is playful, fun, and weird, which sums up “Hudson Hawk.” Also, this captures Willis at his best: charming and a must-watch.

“Baby Driver”

Sean: “Baby Driver” is “La La Land” but with better characters and armed robbery. This clip sums up film perfectly.

“Back to the Future”

Hassel Velasco: Guys...Marvin Berry discovered his cousin's revolutionary sound back in 1955.

“Romeo & Juliet”

Lisa Carroll: I loved loved loved teaching Romeo And Juliet in freshman English, and after we finished reading the play we'd watch Baz's version and discuss the adaptation. The innocence and tension in this scene is so beautifully amplified by the sensuous nature of the song and her captivating voice. Totally swoon-worthy.

“Dreamgirls”

Lisa: Yes, I will take the Oscar, thank you.

“Ella Enchanted”

Lisa: My second favorite Queen song (after “Bohemian Rhapsody” in “Wayne's World”), and one of my favorite Cinderella adaptations.

“The Bodyguard”

Lisa: Whitney Houston’s “The Bodyguard” made Cosmopolitan's “50 Old Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch.”

It has the greatest soundtrack of all time and the worst acting of all time as proven in this clip.

“My Best Friend’s Wedding”

Daniel: If you’re a sappy romantic, you really can’t get better than this.

“La La Land”

Mike: “You know the most psychologically damaging event of your life? Let’s just run it back and see what life looks like if we skipped that part.” Everyone who had a hand in “La La Land” is a jerk and deserved to get bested by “Moonlight” for all the emotional damage you caused me. I’m sending you all of my future wife’s inevitable therapy bills.

The Boneyard Archives

Writing Nirvana: What's Your Dream Writing Gig?

By Daniel Ford and Sean Tuohy

Sean: What is your dream project? Given the chance and funding, what would you love to work on?

Daniel: My go-to answer usually has something to do writing a novel as my job instead of something I do as a side gig. I don't want to write on buses or trains, at bars or college campuses anymore. I want my daily work routine to include sitting down at a computer and typing up some rich hell to make my characters walk through.

However, I have this other dream. And it scares the hell out of me. I'd love to write for a television show. I have zero experience writing screenplays (as you're painfully aware of), and have no clue about writers’ room dynamics. But it would be thrilling to have an idea that's good enough for a character to say on television. Just one line of dialogue in a drama or sitcom that gets a reaction from an audience would make me the happiest writer on Earth.

How about you? Major feature film? Small indie? Television show? Detective novel?

Sean: Making writing a full-time gig would be the best. I know that it will happen at some point, so I’m comfortable waiting for it to happen. Just have to pay the dues first. I remember reading that during his high point screenwriter/novelist William Goldman would leave his New York City apartment in the morning and make his way to an office where he wrote for hours until the late afternoon and then went out and walked around the city. One day... 

The dream project would oddly be a novel. I love screenplays but there is no dream screenplay that I want to see as a film. Sadly with screenplays you have to accept that there is a huge chance it will never be made. Ever. 

I've outlined chunks of a story, done the research, conducted more research, but I need the time to focus on it. I also think it needs more time to simmer...like a few years. The novel would focus on Peru in the 1960s and follow three men with a shared goal. It’s based on my family, but with a good chunk made up.

Television is more open nowadays because everyone needs content. Doug Richardson told us that.

Daniel: It's fascinating that we essentially want to switch roles. Do you think that's because I've written a novel and you've written a screenplay? Do you think it's just us wanting to test our storytelling ability and seek out new challenges?

Judging from what I know about your family's history, those men's shared goal might not be altruistic. That's a novel I'd want to read.

Sean: I'm not too sure where it comes from. Maybe just the need to change it up. I think it may come from the fact that as writers you need to find the right match for a story.

The one I want to tell really fits well with a novel. A screenplay would limit the story, and I can’t force it into another format. If you try to force a story to be something it isn’t, it won’t work. The back of your mind knows what works, but it needs to connect with the front of brain and that can be hard.

The story you want to tell may work best for television and your brain knows it and is letting you know that.

Daniel: Could also be that I binge watch television on a regular basis.

I gravitate toward shows with singular visions. Like "Mad Men," "Rectify," "Deadwood," "The Sopranos." Hearing those writers/directors talk about writing scripts late into the night and molding a show to fit what's in their head sounds exhilarating. I don't have an idea for anything (yet), but those are the types of shows I'd like to work on. Something that maybe lasts for a season or two, but maybe influences other shows.

I essentially wrote my novel as a series of short stories. Each chapter doesn't advance the plot so much as take a snapshot of my character at that specific point in his life. You could say each chapter is an episode.

Damn you, Tuohy, now I'm writing a television series in my head. How dare you!

Sean: You write that television show, damn it!

If you look at “The Wire,” it's just one giant book. That is all it is.

As much as I love television, the question going forward is when do people become overwhelmed by everything that’s out there and stop watching?

Daniel: I think that question exists for everything. Think about how many crime novels there are. How many of them are truly original? But people love the genre, so books keep getting published. The great material will always rise to the top. People thought television was going to be a fad when it first came out, but it's still with us. I think showrunners are treating these shows very much like a short story collection right now. It’s chance to tell a story over time that's not as limiting (or financial crippling) as a major feature film. There's just so many ways you can explore characters and plots.

Take "Fargo" for example. Great movie that you wouldn't think would make for a good series. Yet, it's great. Writers are always going to come up with good stories. I think the form is constantly being reinvented and that's a good thing. The landscape should encourage future screenwriters (and writers in general), not discourage them.

Sean: Wow. That sums up the writing landscape perfectly.

Daniel: That's why I believe in what we do. There are roughly a gazillion blogs, bazillion literary websites, and a plethora of other content publishers online. But how many actually stand out for good reasons, not salacious ones? Sure, every market is saturated in some way, but there are so many niche readerships, audiences, and communities that can support fledging operations. If we had unlimited resources, we'd maybe have a sleeker website design, we'd have a sound studio to record pods, and we'd serve Blanton's in our water coolers. But would we really do anything all that differently? Probably not. We'd just be able to do more of it with greater frequency and depth. At least before our cocaine addictions.

Sean: ...The blow always gets me...always...

But you are correct. If we had the resources we would be able to make the website sleeker and make this better and that better, but it would not make the content better. You could have a million dollars invested into a website or television show, but if the content is poor the show is going to be poor.

Unless it’s "NCIS."

THE BONEYARD ARCHIVES

The Boneyard: When Do You Give Up On A Bad Book or Movie?

From the desks of Sean Tuohy and Daniel Ford: At what point in reading a book or watching a movie do you know it's bad? At the beginning? In the middle? The end? How many books or movies have you dropped in the middle and never returned to? How bad does it need to be to walk away?

Rachel Tyner: I used to never stop reading a book or watching a movie, even if I didn't like it, because I had something against leaving it "unfinished."

Now, I'm getting older, and ain't nobody got time for that.

There are so many books and movies out there, so if I don't like something, I'm done with it. I try and give it three chances. Pick it up and read, get bored. Try again a few days later (or weeks, months, etc.). Try again one more time. Recently, this happened with Ender's Game. It seemed like I would love it "on paper" (haha, get it?), but it was seriously a terrible book.

I think you know pretty soon into a movie too. Remember "That Awkward Moment?" Terrible within the first five minutes. When something you are watching or reading is making your life less interesting (or even less fun, if that's the movie/book you are reading), what's the point?

Daniel Ford: I remember walking out of the theater during "That Awkward Moment" with you, Sean, and Steph. It was that moment one of the female characters' father dies and Zac Efron has to have a powwow with his boys to decide whether he wants to go or not because he doesn't want to be considered the girl's boyfriend. That movie still owes me money.

I tried to get into Ender's Game a bunch of times as well. Couldn't do it. Dune, same thing. I used to read much more nonfiction than I do now, and I'd bounce around from book to book if I got to a slower section or if my interests pulled me in another direction, but it's tough for me to put down a book for good.

I mentioned to Sean that I read a book recently that was awful, just awful. It had a good, strong opening, and then became 12 novels in one and none of them were good. And I hate read the rest. I complained to everyone I know. Must of the reactions were, "Well, just stop reading it." But by reading the whole thing I got a great lesson on failure (not that I needed one), and how learn how not to write dialogue.

That being said, you're right about time. It's one thing if all you're doing all day is sitting on the beach reading shitty paperbacks, but all of us have to work for a living. Why torture yourself when something isn't good? Better to go write something great than read something terrible!

Matt DiVenere: I have had the absolute worst luck with movies lately. It's basically a curse at this point. Here's the order of the last few movies I've watched that were offensively bad:

  • “The Drop”
  • “Hot Pursuit”
  • “Focus”
  • “Pitch Perfect 2”

I know that I should take the blame for some of these, but yikes. If I were the creators of “The Drop,” knowing that it's James Gandolfini's last movie, I would have burnt every single copy of that mess and sent the remains up into space rather than have that movie be in his IMDB profile.

The only reason why I watched the whole movie was to be able to fully hate them and thoroughly discuss my hate for them with anyone who asks.

Also, you know a movie is bad right away. The dialogue, the acting, and the soundtrack. Those are my three strikes.

Gary Almeter: I spent 2006 reading Theodore Dresier's An American Tragedy. It took an entire year and I hated every minute of it but just thought it was something I should have read. Never again. Now, if something doesn't grab me by page three or four I put it down and it is dead to me.

I walked out of "The Flintstones" starring John Goodman and Elizabeth Perkins. 

Daniel: I have fond memories of going to see "The Flintstones" with my family. It was one of the rare times in those days that my father had a Saturday morning off. I'm convinced he still regrets taking us to the movies that day.

I'm also more selective now that my time is so divided. I won't necessarily pick up a book that I'm on the fence about if I get in another book that I know I'll probably love. The one time I was swayed by some fall lists and picked up something I originally dismissed, I got burned with a crappy read.  

Lisa Carroll: I feel slightly ashamed to admit that I've tried to read The Hobbit about a dozen times since 2001 when "The Lord of the Rings" movie came out (because I will not break my rule about seeing a movie before I've read the book) and I just can't get past the damn dwarf party. Needless to say I have yet to see any of the films.

However, I do teach the "three strikes and you're out" rule to my kids. I tell them, "Give a book three chapters because sometimes the author takes a little longer with the exposition and if you get through three chapters and he/she hasn't captured you, put it down." I general stick with that rule myself. Except when I have to read a book for school.

The hard part about being a middle school librarian is when I have to read all 20 Nutmeg nominees and then book talk them and convince the kids that I love them all. That's where my degree in theater really pays off.

To add to the discussion, comment below, weigh in on our Facebook page, or tweet us @WritersBone.

For more posts from The Boneyard, check out our full archive.

What Your Favorite Meryl Streep Performance Says About You

By Gary M. Almeter

Linda in “The Deer Hunter”

You once made the beach-themed cupcakes (with marzipan starfish, graham cracker sand, and fondant beach balls) that you saw on Pinterest for your best friend’s summer outdoor baby shower and, goddamn, if your cupcakes didn’t turn out better than the picture on Pinterest!

Jill Davis in “Manhattan”

You loved your new sporty modern bikini bra you bought from Urban Outfitters with its banded cutout detailing, its sleek silhouette, and its strappy scoop neck, but then your boyfriend ruined it by throwing it in the washing machine and it is sold out online.

Joanna Kramer in “Kramer vs. Kramer”

For your 21st birthday, you and some girl friends went to “The Price is Right” and you wore a t-shirt that said “Kiss Me Bob Barker—I’m 21 Today.” You neither got called to be a contestant nor kissed that day and have been resentful ever since (but that Bob Barker sounds like a sick crazy fuck anyway, so fuck him). 

Sarah Woodruff/Anna in “The French Lieutenant’s Woman”

You once created a stir at your book club when you suggested that Pilates did not count as strength training.

Sophie Zawistowskiin “Sophie’s Choice”

You swear—and have asked your primary care physician to certify this to a reliable degree of medical certainty—that you pee more often when you’re wearing a button-up romper.

Karen Silkwood in “Silkwood”  

Sometimes you just want to yank out your uterus and smack it around for being such a bitch when you’ve been nothing but kind and considerate to it.

Susan Traherne in “Plenty”

You get bikini waxes with some frequency and after each one you can’t help but ask yourself, “Was that really worth it?”

Karen Blixen in “Out of Africa”

You make 77% of what your male counterparts make but you sort of don’t even give a shit about the gender pay gap because you get stoned with your boss at lunch from time to time and you can wear sleeveless blouses on casual Friday.  

Rachel Samstat in “Heartburn”

The cup size on the bustier you just bought at Marshall’s seems a little bit off. Also, you definitely had a poster of Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” in your dorm room in college

Helen Archer in “Ironweed”

You and your girlfriend had a three-way with Seal when he played the Orpheum in 1995.

Lindy Chamberlain in “A Cry in the Dark”

Your period tends to come the day after you buy a pregnancy test and you’re always like, “Quit playing games with me, okay uterus?”

Mary Fisher in “She-Devil”

You could very much go for a nice long fuck right about now. Also, why is it so hard to hard to find classic rock t-shirts that are cut for women?

Suzanne Vale in “Postcards from the Edge”

You would love it if one day you could eat, oh I don’t know, a fucking cheeseburger and not feel guilty about it?

Madeline Ashton in “Death Becomes Her”

You were at a job interview once and the interviewer was staring at your cleavage the whole time and you were all, “What the fuck?” And then in the elevator you looked down and guess what? You had a chocolate stain on your blouse. 

Clara del Valle Trueba in “The House of the Spirits”

You borrowed your roommate’s Tory Burch “Louisa” ballet flats without asking one autumn and subsequently trashed them as you were tailgating before the big game. When you got back to your apartment your roommate wasn’t back from her shift at Legal Sea Foods so you just threw them in the dumpster behind your building and your roommate thought she lent them to her sister.

Gail Hartman in “The River Wild”

“To shave your legs or not to shave your legs?” That is the question you ask yourself each morning from October through March. On the one hand, smooth legs are sexy and, on the other hand, you can just wear leggings all fall and winter. 

Francesca Johnson in “The Bridges of Madison County”

You’re wearing the prettiest bra and silk shantung jacket today but every time you lean over it’s like “Free the nipples!” and you’re like, “Whoa!”

Kate Gulden in “One True Thing”

You cannot find any patio furniture that you like.

Roberta Guaspari in “Music of the Heart”

There was definitely a long adjustment period but you finally got to the point where you kinda liked having short hair. It’s nice needing the tiniest amounts of conditioner and product. However, last week you went to get a trim and your friends were dumbfounded as to why you were not letting your hair grow out

Susan Orlean in “Adaptation”

You would rather stand on the bus and/or train holding on to an Ebola-slathered pole, than sit next to a dude as the dude would inevitably sit with his legs spread wide open and why the fuck do dudes get to sit with their legs spread wide open but you can’t and if you do you get admonished, explicitly and implicitly, for not sitting like a lady? 

Clarissa Vaughan in “The Hours”

You were talking to your gym crush the other day and you’re pretty sure you smiled when he told you that he and his girlfriend had just broken up and you’re wondering if he noticed.

Lisa Metzger in “Prime”

Victoria’s Secret has no bras in your size. Do you sweat it? No! You go to Kohl’s where you can get Hanes and Bali bras—underwire bras, wire-free bras, sports bras, minimizer bras, sexy and seductive bras, any kind of bras—for less than half the price!

Miranda Priestly in “The Devil Wears Prada”

Once you were watching “New Girl” while lying on your couch and you lost your phone. You were freaking out but then you remembered that you set your phone on your boobs.

Janine Roth in “Lions for Lambs”

It is 7:00 a.m. and you are craving corn dogs right now.

Donna Sheridan in “Mamma Mia!”  ­

Your favorite drink is the mojito. However, no drink exemplifies the problems that arise when a drink is made without precisely measuring its ingredients better than the mojito. It’s basically a fucking crapshoot every time you order one. 

Sister Aloysius Beauvier in “Doubt”

You cannot walk through Target without spending at least $150.

Julia Child in “Julia & Julia”

It’s time for you to go bra shopping again and you fear you will have to sell a fucking kidney or something so you can afford it.

Jane Adler in “It’s Complicated”

You just bought this dress from J. Crew but it’s apparently sort of vanity sized and it was a final sale so you can’t return it. It’ll cost more to have it tailored than the dress actually cost and for fuck’s sake.

Margaret Thatcher in “The Iron Lady”

You refuse to buy feminine products from young male cashiers. If there are only young male cashiers at the open registers at whatever Walgreen’s or CVS you are at, you will walk or drive to a different Walgreen’s or CVS. 

Violet Weston in “August: Osage County”

Your go-to Halloween costume is getting dressed up as Audrey Hepburn from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.”

Witch in “Into the Woods”

You had your period the entire week of band camp for three years in a row.

Ricki in “Ricki and the Flash”

The prestigious East Coast college you went to subtly emanated, over a period of four years, a concept of the ideal American woman, who is nothing short of fantastic. She must be a successful wife, mother, community contributor, and possibly career woman, all at once. Besides this, she must be attractive, charming, gracious, and good-humored. She must talk intelligently about her husband’s job, but not try to horn in on it, keep her home looking like a page out of House Beautiful, and be efficient (but not intimidatingly so). While she is managing all this, she must be relaxed and happy, find time to read, paint, and listen to music, think philosophical thoughts, be the keeper of culture in the home, and raise her husband’s sights above the television set. And you’re like, “Umm. No.” 

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Flashback Friday: Would Our Favorite '90s Flicks Survive in 2015?

As if! It’s been 20 years since everyone’s favorite material girl Cher (played by Alicia Silverstone) and her posse hit the big screen in “Clueless.” That’s right, the iconic film that brought us plaid outfits, Valley girl slang, and Paul Rudd is now two decades old. Feeling ancient yet? 

In honor of the film’s big birthday, the Writer’s Bone crew decided to reminisce about our favorite '90s flicks. We also ponder what would the movies we loved as children be like if they were made today?

Put on your slap bands, let your hair down from a scrunchie, hang up your Zack Morris phone, and read our roundup of 1990s nostalgia.—Stephanie Schaefer

Emili Vesilind: How about a remake of “Se7en” with Charlie Hunnam as Brad Pitt (for, um, selfish reasons), and Irrfan Khan as Morgan Freeman?? But we'd have to get Gwynnie to reprise her role because she still deserves to have her head in a box. Okay, maybe Zosia Mamet would be good, too—she has that skittish 20-something thing down!

Scored by Evan Dando of the late Lemonheads, who sung about Paltrow's head in a box in the '90s:

Daniel Ford: As Andy Dwyer said, “I'd like to remake the movie ‘Kazaam' with Shaquille O'Neal, where he plays a genie, and I'd like to get it right."

Sean Tuohy: I would remake “Ghost Dad” but make it gritty and hardcore. Damon Wayans' plays the Bill Cosby role and he is beaten to death and then thrown off a bridge by a Russian gangster. He then comes back as ghost and makes his children take out revenge on those who killed him.

...And somewhere along the way they all learn the importance of family...

Kevin Almonte: At the risk of sounding like an angsty millennial, the '90s were probably the best decade for movies.

You got the beginning of truly great indie films with Tarantino's "Reservoir Dogs." "Jurassic Park" revolutionizing blockbusters. Comedy gold from the Coen Brothers' "The Big Lebowski" and "Fargo." The rebirth of gangster movies with "Goodfellas" starting the decade. Technically, " The Matrix" is a '90s movie, ushering in gritty sci fi.

I can go on all day.

Matt DiVenere: “The Sandlot” (1993) is an absolute classic, yet I quote the movies to my AAU baseball team (13-year-olds) and not one of them had ever heard of the movie! Blew my mind.

The movie itself would be quite interesting in today's society. Do people even swim at public pools anymore? But to include some type of technology angle to the script would probably be pretty cool. I think it would still hold up, and probably do pretty well as a kid’s movie. All we need is Kevin Costner to be in it and we're good to go.

Stephanie: Some of my favorite '90s movies are “10 Things I Hate About You,” “You’ve Got Mail,” and “While You Were Sleeping.”

So much has changed since “You’ve Got Mail” first came out in 1998—and I’m not just talking about Meg Ryan’s post-plastic surgery face. Today, Fox Books would have been put out of business by e-readers like Kindle. Joe and Kathleen would have met via Tinder, where I’m assuming their exchanges would have been quick and to-the-point and far less romantic.

“I go online, and my breath catches in my chest until I hear three little words: You've got swiped,” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

Daniel: Would a movie like “Home Alone” get made today? Let's face it; Kevin's parents are historically awful. How do you forget your kid twice? And when you're taking life advice from a polka bandleader played by John Candy, you know you've hit bottom. Forget the Wet Bandits, these parents would get jail time or have their kids rightfully taken away. More likely, they would be given a television show on TLC called, "Loser Parents: How to Lose A Kid in 10 Days."

We also haven't had a good (bad) athlete-centric movie in a while. Lebron is in "Trainwreck" and Tom Brady is in "Ted," but no one has done a "Space Jam" or "Kazaam" like Michael Jordan and Shaq. Are athletes "too cool" to star in something that might get skewered on Twitter? Or is that no athlete other than Lebron has the kind of star power Jordan or Shaq did at the time?

That being said, who wouldn't watch a Bill Murray spin-off of "Space Jam" where he helps out alien basketball teams across the universe? I would hand over my money like this:

Matt: Um Ray Allen was/is/will always be Jesus Shuttlesworth.

With that being said, I think that the social impact of the sports world has changed and that is why we don't see a star athlete playing them self in a movie based in their own sport. Those '90s athletes transcended their sports. Now, with social media and every athlete thinking they can be a serious actor or comedian, society doesn't need them to be as prevalent as Shaq and MJ were.

Short answer is that the film industry doesn't need them to be the main star as a draw to their movie. Cameos and supporting roles are the better choice now a la Brady and LeBron. 

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10 Great Douchey Writer Moments in Film

Jack Nicholson in "As Good as It Gets"

Jack Nicholson in "As Good as It Gets"

By Daniel Ford

One could make the argument that any character acting like a douche in a movie is a reflection of some part of the screenwriter’s personality. However, in compiling this list I limited myself to just those movies that featured a writer on screen acting like a true asshole. Feel free to make your own suggestions in the comments section or tweet us @WritersBone.

You’ll Never Write Well

Ernest Hemingway in “Midnight in Paris” subtly telling Owen Wilson’s character he’ll never be a good writer.  

All Work and No Play

Jack Nicholson, how hard is to write a play and not go crazy? Oh, you’re married to Olive Oil? Never mind, carry on with that ax.

“I’m a $250 a Week Newspaperman”

I’ve posted this before, but it’s worth including again. “Even for Albuquerque, this is pretty Albuquerque.” And the editor just refunds him his nickel! Challenge him to a duel at least!

Of Course I Won

Sean Connery’s character brags about winning a Pulitzer and then drops this gem: “Writers write so readers can read.” He then goes on to pretty much nail why it’s great to be a writer (regardless of talent).

Writing Women

Poor Julie Benz…she doesn’t even see it coming.

Miles From Sideways

Fine, don’t drink the merlot.

Nice Tip

I suppose you do have to give Johnny Depp’s drug-addled character some credit for actually tipping the waiter. The fact that it was a handful of change thrown on the ground is a minor detail.

That Was the Only Copy??

What the fuck is the matter with Michael Douglas in “Wonder Boys?” Oh yeah, he’s a writer. He just “couldn’t stop.”

Zen Douche

Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Lester Bangs in “Almost Famous” brings the douche, but it would be hard to argue that he’s not damn inspiring at the same time.

My Opinion Is I Hate It

One more “Midnight in Paris” Hemingway jab for the road.

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Hitting the High Notes: Our Favorite Musical Moments in Film

"  Come on and twist a little closer, now/  And let me know that you're mine  "

"Come on and twist a little closer, now/And let me know that you're mine"

Productivity plummeted yesterday afternoon in the Writer’s Bone office after I polled our crew for great music moments in movies. My email was flooded with suggestions and it was too hard to narrow the list down, so I decided to include everything. If you want to join the discussion, submit your favorite suggestions in the comments section, post them on our Facebook page, or tweet us @WritersBone.—Daniel Ford

“Singing in the Rain”

Daniel: What’s incredible is that Gene Kelly allegedly had an off-the-charts fever and his suit continued to shrink during the scene’s filming (which may or may not have been done in one take). He looks happier than anyone else in recorded history. True love makes you do some dopey things, but man, it also makes you feel exactly like a well-choreographed musical number.

“Walk the Line”

Daniel: “No darlin’.” This could have gone horribly wrong. Instead, June Carter gives Johnny Cash a “fresh answer” and the rest is music history.

“Almost Famous”

Stephanie Schaefer: Great song. Great movie. Great scene.

“500 Days of Summer”

Dave Pezza: If only all of our post-coital celebrations could be this good.

“Wayne’s World”

Lisa Carroll: This is my daughter Maggie's favorite song and we frequently replay this scene in my car.

“Grease”

Daniel: Why wasn’t my high school like this! Even the supporting babes were hot. I would have followed Olivia Newton John’s leather pants into hell itself.

“Back to the Future”

Daniel: Best lip-synching performance ever. One of the best parts of this scene is the guy who was knocked out snapping his fingers to the rhythm of the song while still on the floor. Also, Michael J. Fox’s wing tips.

“The Sweetest Thing”

Former 1950s movie star and Writer’s Bone newcomer Sara Silvestri: The best BJ singing scene I can think of.

“Big”

Stephanie: If this scene doesn't make you smile, you don't have a soul. Fun fact: The producer originally hired professional dancers for this, but Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia insisted on doing it themselves.

“The Karate Kid”

Cristina Cianci: Can't go wrong with Ralph Macchio and some soccer.

“Pretty in Pink”

Lindsey Wojcik: I would be born a year after this film was released. However, I still have a deep appreciation for John Hughes' films, which all include some kind of musical moment. This classic Otis Redding song, John Cryer's wardrobe, and the record store all make this John Hughes musical scene stand out to me the most.

“The Big Chill”

Daniel: Everyone in this movie is severely damaged. That’s what makes this scene so powerful. All of the characters forget about all that ails them and let loose to some classic Motown. However, Jeff Goldblum can’t help being creepy.

“Groundhog Day”

Lisa: My husband and I consider this "our song (there may or may not be video evidence of us singing this at karaoke) and sometimes my life feels exactly like this.

"Ferris Bueller’s Day Off"

Lindsey: This scene exemplifies the power of Bueller's charisma. From "Save Ferris" to "Twist and Shout," Bueller can perfectly manipulate situations in his favor—and it's so damn fun! John Hughes' Chicago agrees.

“Remember the Titans”

Lisa: Gets me every time.

“The Bad News Bears”

Everyone’s favorite Upper East Side comedian and Writer's Bone newcomer Rob Bates: One of my favorites. And I don't even give a damn about baseball.

“A Hard Day’s Night”

Daniel: Simply genius. The Beatles essentially made a movie that said,” Hey, look at how cool we are!” Everyone loved it. Because they were (and still are) that cool.

“Casablanca”

Daniel: What a bitch. Good lord. Ingrid Bergman sure knew how to torture a man. Sam has sheer terror in his eyes when she makes him play the song. And Bogey crumbles pretty much instantly. Have a heart woman!

“Say Anything”

Lindsey: Only Lloyd Dobler (played by the lovable John Cusak) could make standing outside of a girl's window holding a boombox not seem creepy. Tell me: Was there a teenage girl that did not want her crush to profess his undying love for her in similar fashion after seeing this scene?

“Jailhouse Rock”

Daniel: My grandfather and uncle watched every Elvis movie known to man many times over.

"Inner Space"

Daniel: I used to act this out in front of family members. It took me years to realize they probably weren't laughing with me.

“Frozen”

Stephanie: Who hasn't belted out "Let it Go" at some point in the last year?

"Way Out West"

Rob Bates: A golden oldie.

“Guys and Dolls” 

Sara: This should be Sinatra singing but I'll take Marlon Brando and some awesome man dancing any day.

The Boneyard Archives

Fortune and Glory: 10 Whip-Cracking, Blaster-Wielding, and Terrorist-Throwing Scenes That Define Harrison Ford’s Badassery

A celebration of Harrison Ford's badassery.

A celebration of Harrison Ford's badassery.

By Daniel Ford

What better way to cheer Harrison Ford up as he convalesces from an injury he sustained on the set of the new “Star Wars” film (which I’m sure was the result of kicking ass on the deck of the Millennium Falcon) than to round up 10 scenes that define his movie badassery.

Feel free to share your favorite Harrison Ford moments in the comment section or tweet us @WritersBone.

“Don’t Call Me Junior”

Okay, don’t call you Junior. So sorry. Continue killing Nazis.

“I Know”

An asshole to the end. Perfect line for Han Solo’s character. He very well could not survive this. Those could be his last words. “I know.” What a dick. I love it.

“I Didn’t Kill My Wife”

Ford delivers this line with all the earnestness and truth his character has. That’s what makes Tommy Lee Jones’ “I don’t care” all the more withering and heartbreaking. I’d jump off the dam after that exchange for sure.

Yawn

The best part is that Ford allegedly improvised this scene because he had caught the flu and half-jokingly asked Spielberg if he could just shoot the guy. I would say that turned out well for us all.

“It’s Over”

It takes a real badass to stop someone without a weapon. All Ford does is point a finger and “it’s over.” So maybe he’s got a few witnesses/human shields behind him helping his cause, but still.

Right and Wrong

You know what weapon is Harrison Ford’s best ally? The truth.

“Too Cold, Huh?”

Anyone else still have nightmares about Ford playing the creepy villain in this movie? Good, glad I’m not the only one. *shivers*

“News Is A Sacred Temple”

“Morning Glory” is an underrated movie in my book. The best part of this scene is his complete and utter distain for Rachel McAdams character and what she represents. Ford fully inhabits his old-man crustiness. He is also carrying a shotgun the entire time. Brilliant. He also makes a frittata later in the movie, has lunch with Dick Cheney, and spars with Diane Keaton.

The Original Terrorist Defense

Have you noticed Ford’s body of work includes some of the most re-watchable movies of all time? How many times have you seen this scene? How many times have you cheered? Yeah, that’s what I thought.

Son of a Bitch

The best “son of a bitch” of all time. I listen to this several times a day.

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