It’s Black History Month and we’re hoping to kick off a month of great articles and reviews celebrating Black culture in film, and pop culture. To help usher in the month, here is yet another installment of the “Minority Movie Heroes” series. As I’ve explained in the past, it’s hard to find actual heroes in film that are people of color whether African American, Latinx, Asian, et al. So, as with all the previous entries I scoured film as much as I could to feature five more minority movie heroes that deserve celebrating.
After the excellent release of the limited edition 2018 print, Code Red delivers a wider and more broadly available upgrade for the highly deserving “Savage Streets.” The 1984 cult classic is still a marvelous gem of eighties exploitation. It channels the classic Youths Gone Wild films of the fifties, and is filled with gorgeous women, roughneck teenagers, and an insanely sexy Linda Blair wreaking pure vengeance against the men that victimized her sister. She does it all with a bitchin’ crossbow, to boot.
Superman’s legend is constantly being re-invented for a new generation and it’s always retrofitted for a new sensibility and new crowd of potential comic book buffs. Thankfully while DC has rebooted Superman a few times in their animated universe they’ve managed to stick to what makes the man and the myth so exciting and awe inspiring. Even in the rare misfires, Superman is almost always Superman and it’s great to see him return yet again in this re-invention of the character’s lore.
“Tremors” is a movie that’s well worth being restored and given the deluxe edition. It’s been one of the longest running monster movie series’ even including a short lived TV show. It’s great that Ron Underwood’s action horror movie finally gets the credit it deserves, as “Tremors” hasn’t aged much at all since 1990. And shockingly, neither has Kevin Bacon. How the hell does he do it?
When Robert Rodriguez is in kids movie mode, he tends to create some of the most syrupy sweet, loud, tepid movies for his intended audience that though they have a lot of the good intention behind them are pretty much destroyed by the climax. That’s the case with “We Can Be Heroes,” a movie so derivative and tired that it destroys a lot of the charming characters and conflicts in the process.
In 2010, “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” shocked me. Not because of Edgar Wright. If there’s any director out there that knows pop culture, it’s Edgar Wright. It’s more so how much Edgar Wright understood the idea of pop culture and how absolutely annoying the idea of nostalgia had become. It’d somewhat become a monstrosity of awareness, sarcastic catch phrases, and smug gate keeping. While “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” is a wonderful film filled with laughs, and some excellent performances, it’s also a polemic about how much pop culture has replaced actual culture. While a lot of others saw it as a great action celebration, I saw it as immensely cynical. It’s also why I love it so much.