Films featuring
Dennis Quaid

Flight of the Phoenix

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I didn’t think it was possible to do a bad imitation of Michael Bay without making it a deliberate parody, but this remake of the 1965 Jimmy Stewart classic manages to ape parts of Bay’s signature look while actually making Armageddon look like Citizen Kane in comparison.

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Undercover Blues

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I wanted to spin a New Orleans-based movie for Fat Tuesday, and this was the only Big Easy film in my collection.

Undercover Blues is a lightweight, inconsequential comedy that succeeds completely on the charisma of its stars and a thoroughly fearless comedic performance by a fast-rising actor. The plot doesn’t make a whole lot of sense and rests on the flimsiest of MacGuffins, but by the end you’re laughing hard enough not to care.

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The Right Stuff

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If nothing else, The Right Stuff could go down in history as the movie that could have elected a President. At a time when the Democratic party was looking for a viable candidate to challenge Ronald Reagan in 1984, the image of Ed Harris as John Glenn, the squeaky clean All-American with the can-do attitude filled them with hope that the real former astronaut turned senator could help them re-capture the White House. I think the film may have actually hurt Glenn in the long run. While he was an American hero, a capable senator and probably would have made an able president, to paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen, he’s no Ed Harris, at least not in the charisma department.

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Unfortunately, all the focus on political ramifications had nothing to do with the actual film, which seemed to get lost in the shuffle. Too bad, because it’s one of the best films of the 1980s, taking real life personalities and molding them into something like a modern American myth.

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Wyatt Earp

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The last time director Lawrence Kasdan and Kevin Costner teamed up for a western it was 1985’s sunny and retro Silverado, a movie that was as much an homage to the traditional western as anything else. Their second teaming, Wyatt Earp, is a complete 180-degree turn from the first. Billed as a serious examination of the life of the famous and controversial lawman, Wyatt Earp takes a long time to win our hearts and then overstays its welcome.

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