The Couch Potato Report

This week in The Couch Potato Report, three movies I haven’t seen, Star
Trek VI and an animated TV show about a critic, who isn’t me.
Last week in The Couch Potato Report I proclaimed my adoration for
If you missed my proclamation, here is what I wrote:
“I like watching movies.
I like going out to the movies, watching movies at home and visiting
friends houses to see movies. I’ve even traveled to other cities,
provinces and countries sometimes with the sole intention just to see
Like I said, I like watching movies. Especially when they are good and
not a waste of time.”
I enjoy movies so thoroughly that when a film, or TV Series comes along
that skewers them, it usually gets a positive response from me.
Such is the case with THE CRITIC, now available as a box set containing all of the 23 glorious episodes in 1994 and 1995.
Created by Al Jean and Mike Reiss, who also worked on THE SIMPSONS, and featuring the vocal talents of Saturday Night Live alumnus Jon Lovitz THE CRITIC skewered Hollywood and it’s stars with hilarious parodies of classics and contemporary blockbusters. From the musical “Apocalypse Wow” to “Dennis the Menace II Society,” this series was a delight for people, like me, who love movies.
That’s also why this series failed. You simply have to be a film fanatic to understand and appreciate it. Satires of films like “Cliffhanger” and “Scent of a Woman” are a lot funnier if you know the movies or if they are fresh in your head.
If you love movies, or if you are a huge fan of THE SIMPSONS, THE FAMILY GUY or FUTURAMA then you should pick up this three disc box set containing every episode of THE CRITIC that was produced.
Otherwise you should stay away or you’ll be quoting THE CRITIC’s main catch phrase and stating “it stinks.”
To this day many science fiction fans use the “it stinks” catch phrase to describe the odd numbered films in the Star Trek movies.
Very few people have ever uttered those words to describe the even numbered 2- THE WRATH OF KHAN, 4- THE VOYAGE HOME or STAR TREK 6- THE UNDISCOVERED COUNTRY.
Star Trek V left us nowhere to go but up, and with the return of Star Trek II director Nicholas Meyer, Star Trek VI restored the movie series to its classic blend of space opera, intelligent plotting, and engaging interaction of stalwart heroes and menacing villains.
Borrowing its subtitle (and several lines of dialogue) from Shakespeare, the movie finds Admiral Kirk (William Shatner) and his fellow Enterprise crew members on a diplomatic mission to negotiate peace with the revered Klingon Chancellor Gorkon (David Warner).
When the high-ranking Klingon and several officers are ruthlessly murdered, blame is placed on Kirk, whose subsequent investigation uncovers an assassination plot masterminded by the nefarious Klingon General Chang (Christopher Plummer) in an effort to disrupt a historic peace summit. As this political plot unfolds, Star Trek VI takes on a sharp-edged tone, with Kirk and Spock confronting their opposing views of diplomacy, and testing their bonds of loyalty when a Vulcan officer is revealed to be a traitor.
With a dramatic depth befitting what was to be the final movie mission of the original Star Trek crew, this film took the veteran cast out in respectably high style. With the torch being passed to the crew of Star Trek: The Next Generation, only Kirk, Scotty, and Chekov would return, however briefly, in Star Trek: Generations, which was another odd numbered film.
Something else that is odd is that of the three big new films being released this week I haven’t seen one of them. I’ve seen commercials for them, seen the synopsis’ and read a slew of reviews for each of them, I just haven’t actually seen them. So I’ll tell you what I know and you can make up your own mind if they are worth seeing
In RADIO Ed Harris stars as a football coach who mentors mentors a
mentally challenged boy, played by Cuba Gooding Jr.
During the course of LE DIVORCE French and American social customs and
behaviors are observed in a story about an American visiting her sister in
A thirteen-year-old girl’s relationship with her mother is put to the test
as she discovers drugs, sex, and petty crime. The film itself is called
Enjoy them, should you choose to do so.
THE CRITIC, STAR TREK 6- THE UNDISCOVERED COUNTRY, RADIO, LE DIVORCE and THIRTEEN are all available at a store near you right now.
Coming Next Week
LOST IN TRANSLATION – Simply put: This is the best movie of the past year! Bob Harris (played by Bill Murray) is an American film actor, far past his prime. He visits Tokyo to appear in commercials, and he meets Charlotte (Scarlett Johannson), the young wife of a visiting photographer. Bored and weary, Bob and Charlotte make ideal if improbable traveling companions. Both separately and together, they live the experience of the American in Tokyo. Bob and Charlotte suffer both confusion and hilarity due to the cultural and language differences between themselves and the Japanese. As the relationship between Bob and Charlotte deepens, they come to the realization that their visits to Japan, and one another, must soon end. Or must they?
UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN – An American takes vacation to Italy and settles there. (Diane Lane, Raoul Bova, Sandra Oh)
AMERICAN SPLENDOR- Everyman Harvey Pekar creates comic book based on himself. (Paul Giamatti, Hope Davis and Harvey Pekar as himself)
More on those next week.
Enjoy the movies and I’ll see you here on The Couch!