Monday, June 30, 2014

Flick Pick: Stripes

(Columbia, 1981)

Virtually everybody in this movie except Bill Murray and Warren Oates were on their first big thing. It was supposed to be Cheech and Chong Join The Army, but that pair's demands for creative control got them written right out of the project. Director Ivan Reitman wanted Bill Murray, having just done Meatballs, so he told writer Daniel Goldberg to get Harold Ramis interested in writing and appearing in it, and then Ramis could convince Bill Murray to come along. Coming at the beginning of a ten-year streak where Reitman could do no wrong in comedy films, the rest was magic. It cleaned up tidily at the box office, and it holds up as well now as when it came out 33(!) years ago this week. As I was living in the same barracks area at Ft. Knox seen in the film shortly after it premiered, seeing it still brings on a flashback or two. And since Baby Brother did his Basic and Armor AIT there not long afterward from my visit, today's pick is also his birthday greeting.

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