Mr. Beaks Talks THE LINCOLN LAWYER, EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS and STREETS OF FIRE With Michael Paré!
Thirty years ago, Michael Paré got his big break on ABC's THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO playing Tony Villicana, a good-looking punk kid whose primary dramatic function was to piss off Robert Culp's salty FBI Agent every other episode. Prior to this, Paré had never set foot in front of a television or movie camera. Two years later, he was a movie star. EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS. STREETS OF FIRE. THE PHILADELPHIA EXPERIMENT. Two years after that, he was headed back to television. A few years later, he left Hollywood for Amsterdam, where he quickly settled into a successful career as a direct-to-video leading man. For most of the last decade, he's been appearing in Uwe Boll movies like 1968 TUNNEL RATS, RAMPAGE and BLOODRAYNE: THE THIRD REICH, and, it seems, genuinely enjoying his collaborations with the prolific German filmmaker.
But let's jump back to 1984. After fizzling out theatrically, Martin Davidson's EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS experienced a surprise resurgence via heavy pay cable rotation and steady soundtrack sales. This prompted MTV to air Paré's persuasive lip-syncing of John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band's "On the Dark Side" as a video - which no doubt led many to believe the actor was performing the song. Paré was all over television at this point, getting hot at the right time to help Universal sell their biggest hope for summer '84: Walter Hill's STREETS OF FIRE. With two films being shilled by MTV at a time when every young person in America was glued to the network, this appeared to be Paré's moment. But despite spawning a top ten Billboard hit in Dan Hartman's "I Can Dream About You", STREETS OF FIRE failed to catch on with a fully-aware moviegoing public, and wound up being one of the summer's biggest bombs. And while his box office clout was slightly redeemed when THE PHILADELPHIA EXPERIMENT performed well that August, even with EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS airing incessantly on cable, Paré's "moment" had inexplicably come and gone.
Considering how Hollywood is notorious for attempting to cram certain flavorless actors and actresses down the public's gullet, I'm always amazed when a guy as talented and undeniably magnetic as Paré gets brushed off so quickly. Very little effort was required here: had someone given him another crack at that shotgun-and-trenchcoat routine, this time in a straightforward action flick, they would've had a hit on their hands. No way moviegoers were rejecting that guy again.
So what happened? I spoke to Paré a couple of weeks ago, and rather than take shots at the studio system that gave up on him way too soon, he humbly admits it was his own desire to "stretch" as an artist that kept him from playing the Hollywood game. If there's any residual bitterness from how it all played out, he certainly isn't copping to it. Right now, he's focused on the next phase of his career, which kicked off last weekend with his brief but memorable supporting turn as Detective Kurlen in Brad Furman's THE LINCOLN LAWYER. Paré's badass bearing has only broadened over the years; the looks are still there, but he's got heft now - physically and emotionally. There's a danger that wasn't quite there before. One could very easily see him anchoring a gritty cop drama in the mold of THE SHIELD, or boozing his way through a noirish Lawrence Block yarn. If you fucked with the Paré of the past, you caught a beating; now, you'd just get dead.
Some smart director or series creator is going to look like a genius for "rediscovering" Michael Paré - and at fifty-two years old, he's finally ready to seize that moment. Paré is incredibly candid in the below interview (particularly in discussing his working relationship with Rick Moranis on STREETS OF FIRE). Hard not to root for this guy.
Mr. Beaks: So how did you hook up with Brad Furman.
Michael Paré: I got the job because a friend of mine was on this celebrity basketball team with Furman. He showed him his reel, and Brad saw that I was the other actor in the scene. And he said, "Hey, can you get a hold of him?" [Furman] called the casting director, got me an appointment, I auditioned, then he took it to [producer Tom] Rosenberg, and he and Tom agreed to put me in the movie. It wasn't exactly, "Call my agent, and I'll see what I think about it."
And Brad turned out to be a great, great guy. Young, incredibly creative, incredibly obsessive: you could see that this guy works twenty hours a day when he's doing a movie. And Tom Rosenberg is just one of those calm guys who's very confident in all of the creative choices he makes. It was an incredible experience. And Matthew McConaughey is also very calm and charismatic and confident. There was no Hollywood bullshit going on. It was all a bunch of professional, artistic stuff.
Mr. Beaks: Do you find that's often the case when you've got a good piece of material like this? Egos are set aside, and guys just get down to work?
Paré: Well, you know, Michael Connelly... you can't argue this guy is a great, great writer. I've read most of his stuff, and you don't know what's going to happen until the last ten pages. And that's a 400-page novel. It's just fucking great, man. The better the material, the better the odds that everyone involved is going to work hard.
Beaks: Obviously, Brad was a fan of yours already.
Paré: Brad's from Philadelphia, where I have a big fanbase. And he's also into music. He did a documentary on Chicago jazz, which I think is how he got hooked up with Tom Rosenberg.
Beaks: When you finally met with Brad, were there any particular films of yours he was a fan of?
Paré: Yeah, he's a big EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS fan. But he sent me half a dozen emails saying how excited he was that he got me in the movie. It was a lovefest because I was a big fan of the material. My whole career has been about synchronicity: just being in the right time at the right place around the right people. That's been my whole career. So this was just perfect.
Beaks: You kind of had stardom thrust upon you.
Paré: Yes. Absolutely. Thirty years ago. (Laughs)
Beaks: I think I was ten years old when THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO was on the air.
Paré: Oh, okay. So you're not a kid. Good.
Beaks: And it was cool, because you were on that show, and then, all of a sudden, it was EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS and STREETS OF FIRE. Were you ready for it?
Paré: No. The magic of THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO - and I was a fourth supporting character, but was in, I think, nine out of eleven episodes and seventeen out of twenty-two - is that I didn't have a lot of weight to carry. I had a lot of time to prepare for every episode. I had studied in New York for a couple of years, and when I got out here I continued studying, so the onus wasn't on me. I got to continue polishing my craft as an actor. That was only a year-and-a-half, and then I got EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS.
But you see that was a real artsy project: they put us in this dive hotel in the middle of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and you wouldn't know that it was going to be a big movie. We had two weeks of improvisational rehearsal with the director Martin Davidson. You know, Joey Pantoliano, Ellen Barkin, Tom Berenger... they all had cut their chops and were established talent. It was a workshop, summer stock kind of environment, where everybody was trying to do great work. Then STREETS OF FIRE came along, and it was like, "Bam! Fucking Hollywood! Stand there and be a star, dude!" That kind of shocked me. I wasn't quite prepared for that. But, yeah, in four years I went from working in a restaurant to making a lot of money and being in movies that were released nationally and internationally. (Laughs) I met the Prince of Japan. They flew me over to Japan to meet the Prince!
Beaks: (Laughing)Had he requested your presence?
Beaks: That's surreal.
Paré: And literally five years before, me and my brother were living in a two-bedroom tenement on the Lower East Side when it was a really bad neighborhood. (Laughs) I shouldn't say two-bedroom. Two rooms. Two nine-by-twelve rooms. It was a tenement on the Lower East Side. Five-floor walk-up in the back. And then four or five years later I'm shaking hands with the Prince of Japan.
Beaks: I read that you studied with Uta Hagen.
Paré: I don't know where that came from. Uta Hagen's books were the first ones I read. And I went to HB Studio, because you could go on a daily basis there: you didn't have to sign a contract or commit to a monthly amount; it was a very economical kind of class. I studied with a guy named Robert Modica, and another guy on 14th Street named Bill Esper. And Mervyn Nelson. I just went from teacher to teacher because I couldn't keep up the contract; they all wanted financial commitments, and I just couldn't do it.
Beaks: Did you find that helped?
Paré: Studying with different guys? Yeah. Because you come to realize they're all saying the same thing in a different way. They identify the same task and give it a different label. So you realize that everybody has their own perspective, but it's pretty much the same road.
Beaks: Was it helpful to work with established actors like Robert Culp and William Katt before this rush of stardom happened?
Paré: Robert Culp was really cool. He was very friendly to me. In the script, whenever we talked it was adversarial. But when the camera wasn't rolling he was a real mensch.
Beaks: And did that help prepare you for what was coming?
Paré: Well, I learned about working with a camera. In acting class you don't have cameras, so you have no idea. I remember the cinematographer of the pilot for THE GREATEST AMERICAN HERO was Jacques Marquette. He actually produced the original ATTACK OF THE 50 FOOT WOMAN. I didn't know anything about marks or shit like that, but I had these great shoes that had kid-leather soles, so I could gently slide my feet and feel the tape. And Jacques said, "Where'd you learn that?" And I said, "Uh, I just figured that you shouldn't see me looking for my mark." And he said, "Kid, you've got a natural instinct." (Laughs) You know, Peter Falk had that he has where he's looking at the ground? He was looking for his marks. I heard that story in acting class, and I didn't want to do Peter Falk. So I had these shoes. I would take a step, the second one would be kind of a sliding step, I'd feel the tape and I'd hit my mark.
Beaks: (Laughing) Do you still do that?
Paré: No, I've been doing this thirty years. I figured shit out.
Beaks: One of the interesting things about that early part of your career is that EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS was not a success initially. It grew through cable and video.
Paré: It got that second theatrical release after cable. That's probably what it got the most news from.
Beaks: So you've got these three movies within almost a year of each other: EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS, STREETS OF FIRE and THE PHILADELPHIA EXPERIMENT. But Eddie really became the character for you. Did you worry about being typecast from that?
Paré: The danger was that they didn't see you playing anything less profound than a rock legend who drops out and hides out in Europe for ten or fifteen years because he's such an artistic poet. Playing a normal guy after that, they just don't see it: you're not a normal guy. I've been playing heroes, and heroes are not normal people. You can't find a leading man doing a nine-to-five job on Wall Street. And that hurt because they said, "You can't play a regular person." Tom Cody was also bigger than life. And in THE PHILADELPHIA EXPERIMENT, I'm a time traveler for god's sake. So for a long time, all I played was cops, heroes and soldiers.
Beaks: So you were yearning to play regular guys?
Paré: I should've kept my mouth shut and played what Hollywood told me to play and had a bigger career. But like a lot of foolish actors, I wanted to stretch myself as an artist, and Hollywood doesn't really give a fuck about what you want to do. (Laughs) They want you to do what they say they can make good movies from. So after doing about ten or fifteen action movies, I started doing these little psycho thrillers. I had, like, three movies where I commit suicide or come close to it. A lot of dramatic stuff. It was very stimulating and rewarding for me as an artist, but Hollywood's like, "We'll tell you when we want to make those movies. You make what we want, or we won't work with you."
Beaks: This must've thrilled your agent.
Paré: They didn't like it at all. They were like, "What the fuck's wrong with you, man?"
Beaks: Were there any roles you were up for at the time that you didn't want to go after?
Paré: No, because I left the United States. After I did that HOUSTON KNIGHTS series for a couple of years [with THE WARRIORS' Michael Beck], I hung around and was getting these action pictures and whatnot. I got divorced for the second time, then I did a movie in Sicily, I did [MOON 44] with Roland Emmerich, and I did EDDIE AND THE CRUISERS 2. And then I moved to Europe. I kind of dropped out.
Beaks: Recently, you've done a string of films with Uwe Boll.
Paré: Yeah, and he let me play some wild characters. SEED was one of the ones where I had to kill myself. That was a great role. And TUNNEL RATS, that's actually where I got introduced to Michael Connelly. He wrote a book called ECHO PARK, and it turns out that Harry Bosch, his most famous character, is an ex-tunnel rat in Vietnam. I told somebody I was being considered for this, and they said, "You've got to pick this up because it has a great explanation of the psychology behind the guys who went into those tunnels." From there, I started reading Michael Connelly incessantly.
Beaks: How is it working with Uwe?
Paré: You know, he's kind of like a docudrama guy in all of his movies. He shoots most of his movies like they're documentaries. He shoots fast, not a lot of coverage, and the dialogue... as long as you say what he needs to have said, he moves on. He's a brilliant guy. He's got two advanced degrees in Economics and Literature. And he's a boxer, so he's a really charming guy. I don't know if everybody would find him charming, but for an actor, to see a poet-warrior, it's just very cool.
Beaks: You said Boll works quickly. What's your preference as an actor?
Paré: I'll tell you, I liked working on THE LINCOLN LAWYER a lot. They had three cameras, and they didn't move on until Brad was very happy with what was on the screen. And then you had the consiglieres, "Okay, fine. We'll give you one more." I like to know that everybody, all the bosses, are happy. Doing little independent movies off in the middle of fucking nowhere, none of the bosses are looking at it. So you can shoot the whole movie and find out, "Well, we should've done this," or "We should've done that." This is where I come to the conclusion that I should've stayed in Hollywood and made the movies my agent and manager were telling me to make instead of saying, "Oh, I want to do something important." Who says what's "important"? They're only movies in the long run anyway.
Beaks: I have to ask, as a huge fan of STREETS OF FIRE and Walter Hill, what was your experience like on that film? It's a very unique movie. Very ambitious.
Paré: You gotta realize that, out of the whole cast, nobody was over thirty. Diane Lane was, I think, eighteen. It was an enormous Hollywood production. My manager had me hire a limousine to pick me up at home and take me to work. I was like, "Jesus, this is incredible. This is fucking Hollywood. The real Hollywood. The Hollywood they make movies about." My manager was a little woman. She wasn't, like, a thug, which is probably what I should've had as a manager at that time. (Laughs) It was scary. And Walter isn't the kind of guy who works well with kids. He's a cowboy. He's like John Ford. "Don't ask me how to act! I'm a director!" (Laughs)
Beaks: Did you at least enjoy shooting the pickaxe fight at the end with Willem Dafoe?
Paré: Now that was something I could understand. The stunt coordinator, Bennie Dobbins, would've been a great director for me. He was like, "Shut the fuck up. Listen to me, and do it like this. You're supposed to do it like this." I think that was one of my best scenes. And the scenes with Diane.
Rick Moranis drove me out of my mind. There's this whole wave of insult comedy. In the real world, if someone insults you a couple of times, you can smack them. Or punch them. You can't do that on a movie set. And these comedians walk around, and they can say whatever they want. I'm just not that handy with that. Comedians are a special breed. They can antagonize you and say whatever they fucking want, and you can't do anything to stop them.
Beaks: All you can do is laugh it off.
Paré: It's one thing once in a while, but, you know, you're with the guy every day. All fucking day. He's this weird looking little guy who couldn't get laid in a whore house with a fistful of fifties. He would imitate me. The first thing he says to me is, "Do you just act cool, or are you really cool?" That was the first sentence out of his mouth to me in Joel Silver's office. And I was like, "Oh fuck, this is not going to go well." But he was one of Joel's dear friends, and he ended up making a bunch of movies for Disney. I just wasn't that sharp. I wasn't ready for that kind of crap.
Beaks: But I think that worked for your character. Cody looks like he really wants to tear the guy's head off the entire movie.
Paré: Yeah, but why wouldn't I? What I wanted to do was just hit him once and let him go through the whole movie like Jack Nicholson in CHINATOWN. I wouldn't have to hit him ever again. Just "Shut the fuck up" and boom! He would then know that was a possibility, and it would've brought his attitude towards me down a little.
Beaks: (Laughing) So in THE LINCOLN LAWYER, you're playing this veteran detective, and it just feels so right. Do you feel like you're entering a new phase in your career?
Paré: I hope so! You know what they say: "An actor is the first one to know his career is over." So who fucking knows? I hope it's going to open doors for me. I've had a shitty pilot season, but then nobody's seen THE LINCOLN LAWYER yet.
They have now. Michael Paré is back. Let the revels begin. Let the fire be started.
THE LINCOLN LAWYER is now playing in theaters everywhere. It's an immensely entertaining legal thriller with a phenomenal cast. Check it out.
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March 21, 2011, 5:42 p.m. CST
I can't wait to see him in more movies -- you hear that Hollywood?
March 21, 2011, 5:42 p.m. CST
...and really surprised to hear that Uwe Boll is "a brilliant guy." Interesting. Anyway, "Streets of Fire" is a little weirdo 80s masterpiece. Hard to believe that Ladd was that young in it...
March 21, 2011, 5:46 p.m. CST
"He's this weird looking little guy who couldn't get laid in a whore house with a fistful of fifties." Acting? He should be writing scripts! And Dr Boll works like he shoots a documentary? No my friend, he is just a very shitty director much like another one take asshat: Mr Lucas.
March 21, 2011, 5:53 p.m. CST
I know a lot of people have liked Eddie and the Cruisers but it was awesome to read about The Philadelphia Experiment. I have always like that movie and I really can't explain why. Totally remember renting that movie and my parents recording it from VHS to VHS with our two VCR's.
March 21, 2011, 5:54 p.m. CST
by The Krypton Kid
the ultimate combination of tough and cool. Who'd come out on top in a confrontation between Paré's Cody and Michael Beck's Swan? That would be one for the ages.
March 21, 2011, 5:58 p.m. CST
But he's a really bad actor. Let's be honest. His limited range worked in Streets of Fire, but he's really bad. Granted I haven't seen him in anything made within the last 20 years, so maybe he's gotten better. He's a cool SOB though.
March 21, 2011, 6 p.m. CST
Has anyone seen Eddie and the Cruisers in The last 20 years? It's laugh out loud bad. The final shot is good though.
March 21, 2011, 6:02 p.m. CST
by Alice Cooper Stalker
March 21, 2011, 6:05 p.m. CST
Streets of Fire is one of the most purely cool movies ever, just a wierd blend of future, past, archetypes and kick ass music. I recall thinking as he got older that he was becoming physically the ideal Bruce Wayne
March 21, 2011, 6:25 p.m. CST
I remember reading a long time ago an interview with Walter Hill in which he discussed the alternate universe where "Streets of Fire" existed, and I'm probably getting details wrong, but in it, America lost World War II (someone dropped the Bomb on us?). And our culture, technology, music and clothing styles, etc. sort of froze in the late '50s and stayed that way for decades. Great fucking movie.
March 21, 2011, 6:59 p.m. CST
If they had had a BAT OUT OF HELL type soundtrack that movie would have done gangbusters, but the album only generated one hit, I think - "I Can Dream About You". Good song, but not enough to carry a movie in the age of non-stop music videos. I do love Pare though - he's been in so many different things.
March 21, 2011, 7:05 p.m. CST
The thing about Moranis, I could never look at his fucking face without the urge to cave it in with a shovel.
by Stuntcock Mike
And what, no detailed discussion on The Philadelphia Experiment? Damn.
March 21, 2011, 7:22 p.m. CST
Glad to hear he's still around and doing just fine. I loved Streets of Fire as a kid... one of the few actually cool things that ever came out of the 80's, IMO.
March 21, 2011, 7:44 p.m. CST
Man, I hope someone does make a tv show with this guy. Reading this, I can hear his voice saying those words.
March 21, 2011, 8:03 p.m. CST
by otm shank
March 21, 2011, 8:44 p.m. CST
It's a real shame his career went down like it did. Like you said, if he'd been cast in a straight-up action role he'd have been Hollywood GOLD. He really was impressaive in "The Philadelphia Experiment," as well as "Eddie and the Cruisers." I didn't like "Streets of Fire" as a movie, but Pare's performance in there made you think "bad-ass action star" if he'd been cast as one later down the road. Unfortunately, he never was. Sad.
March 21, 2011, 9:04 p.m. CST
So many actors who disappear end up looking like hell. Eddie And The Cruisers was great. That song "On The Dark Side" is the best ever in a movie. But that sequel from 89' is such a worthless turd.
March 21, 2011, 9:29 p.m. CST
You have the blasters, the fixx...My favorite is sorcerer. I saw a girl do it at a bar once, and it was the hottest thing ever, the rythem, the lyrics and the slide guitar just make it so great, never underdtood how it wasn't a bigger song. The soundtrack version is better than the Stevie Nicks/Cheryl Crow in my oppinion, and that is tough because I love Nicks.
March 21, 2011, 10:39 p.m. CST
C'mon man, When does that Sci-Fi gem get any exposure!
March 21, 2011, 11:11 p.m. CST
by Roger Moon
The man deserves better.
March 21, 2011, 11:21 p.m. CST
This is the type of interview that should be able to listen to it. And this guy is a dying breed type of actor. Ala, Steve McQueen, Dennis Hooper or even a Micheal Madsen.
March 22, 2011, 1:25 a.m. CST
Used to hear talk of two unmade sequel scripts for Streets of Fire that Walter Hill wrote. One was called "The Far City." Don't know what the other one was. Love watching that movie. Couple of scenes in particular-- the diner-- Cody slaps the kid, takes his butterfly knife, closes it, then gives it back to him, says try it again punk. CLASSIC. Plus after the pick axes get dropped and him and Raven GO AT IT. Best kick to the face EVER in a movie, and some truly epic punch sound effects when he's working Raven over. Plus Raven standing there in a sea of fire with vinyl hip waiters and no shirt. FIND THIS MOVIE if you haven't seen it.
March 22, 2011, 2:58 a.m. CST
Definitely going to have to see this....I can't believe I never have.
March 22, 2011, 6:05 a.m. CST
Point of Impact, bangin' da hell outta Barbara Carrera?? Missed opp, dude.
March 22, 2011, 8:06 a.m. CST
by L. Ron Bumquist
It's definitely a mixed bag. Awesome for three things- Looks like it was shot in Gotham City,circa Batman 89. The girl from The Warriors is in it. Babyfaced Willem Dafoe.
March 22, 2011, 8:26 a.m. CST
I'm surprised he didn't choke you.
March 22, 2011, 8:27 a.m. CST
Whoa he was a cutie back in the day!
March 22, 2011, 8:56 a.m. CST
March 22, 2011, 9:09 a.m. CST
Can't do much better than Streets of Fire (Diane Lane is soooo hot in it), Eddie and the Cruisers (GREAT music), and Philadelphia Experiment (with RoboCop's Nancy Allen)!
March 22, 2011, 9:25 a.m. CST
by Billy Oblivion
Nobody's mentioned how badass Amy Madigan was in SoF. Like Michelle Rodriguez badass. I remember urgently wanting to know what happened to her and Tom Cody afterwards.
March 22, 2011, 9:39 a.m. CST
Loved that movie. Still watch it every so often. Great soundtrack. Wish i would of seen it on the big screen.
March 22, 2011, 9:53 a.m. CST
you can smack someone if they insult you a couple of times. Or punch them." Really?
March 22, 2011, 10 a.m. CST
Great interview, interesting guy. No pretension, no bullshit, but at the same time comes across as a bit of a thug - I can easily picture him going off the rails and bringing the beatings. Always wondered where he went after enjoying Eddie and the Cruisers - though I did see the awful sequel. At the time Pare seemed to have been more concerned with pumping out his biceps than his acting chops. Then again those things were like canteloupes, and motivated me to hit the gym.
March 22, 2011, 10:26 a.m. CST
America has a need to know.
March 22, 2011, 11:43 a.m. CST
I loved that show when I was a kid. It was one of my favorites for the couple years it was on. I've been a Pare' fan for a long, long time. I'm happy that the shitty Streets of Fire sequel made by Albert Pyun was not mentioned.
March 22, 2011, 11:47 a.m. CST
by Billy Oblivion
If I'm not mistaken, the dancer was the one who did the actual dancing in "Flashdance".
March 22, 2011, 12:20 p.m. CST
I hope that Michael gets more A list roles for now on!
March 22, 2011, 7:28 p.m. CST
Sounds to me like he was just trying a bit too hard to get into character. It's funny that Streets of Fire came out at the height of my Moranis obsession (I remember flipping out seeing previews for both SOF and Ghostbusters one after the other), but he turned out to be one of my least favorite parts of that movie because his character was such a jerk. I really loved the Jim Steinman songs and still listen to them when I work out. As for Eddie and the Cruisers, I really liked "On the Dark Side," but does anyone else think it was trying just a little to hard to sound like a Bruce Springsteen song (at least musically; I know Bruce's lyrics usually have deeper themes)?
March 22, 2011, 7:31 p.m. CST
...that complete flops and almost completely forgotten. Usually when a great film flops it eventually finds a following. Other than some of us geeks, no one talks about Streets of Fire. It's actually a great movie.
March 22, 2011, 7:39 p.m. CST
by Dave Shaw
Big fan of Mr.Pare, and Streets of Fire...an all time personal favorite. I understand Albert Pyun shot a Streets "semi-sequel" called "Road to Hell" a few years back. Wonder when/if it will see the light of day.
March 22, 2011, 11:09 p.m. CST
by Mel Garga
I saw Streets at a theater located inside a mall. The mall had a Taco Viva, a pet store, and a Waterbed City. Boca sucks now because it's full of douches and I miss that mall.
March 23, 2011, 8:01 a.m. CST
Still have the original movie poster framed on my wall. It's such an ambitious, strange movie with a weird self-confidence like it just happened to slip into our world from whatever parallell dimension it was created in. I'm not even referring to the bizarre blend of '50s and '80s styles and music, but rather its way of coming off completely straightfaced like this is the way all movies should look and sound. No tongue-in-cheek, no winking to the viewer and no smug humor. I fucking love it to death. <p> Never saw Pyun's apparent shitfest sequel, but have searched for it far and wide against my better judgment. I know I'll see it someday and hate myself afterwards.
March 23, 2011, 12:15 p.m. CST
I tell ya....Eddie and the Cruisers, The Philadelphia Experiment and most of all, Streets of Fire are MUST watch movies from the 80's. Michael Pare just never could catch a break it seems. I thought he showed nice acting chops, even though some differ, to get to the core of the strory in Eddie and the Cruisers. Word and Music, wordman, Words and Music. Just a great movie that got it's soul from the acting chemistry between Pare and Tom Berenger. Eddie and the Cruisers, to this day, reminds me a little of Michael Pare's career. A guy who who wanted to do things his way, but the Industry just wanted him to do the same stuff. Like Eddie in the movie, Michael simply decided to drop out for awhile. Looking back at the Philadelphia Expreiment, the effect were cheesy as hell, but once again, the core story was solid. What would you do? I would do as his charceter did and not stop till I got the answers either. It would have been nice to see them go a little deeper into the story but for the basic story it was a nice movie. But the classic, in my opinion, was Streets of Fire. Walter Hill turned out a very entertaining and even gripping story of a guy who has no where to go trying to find his place in a world full of people who all have somewhere to go. The Tom Cody character just enjoyed being the bad ass. Never apologized for it, just enjoyed it and that kinda struck a nerve for me. Tom Berenger was fantastic as Raven, Diane Lane was so unbelieveably beautiful as Ellen Aim, and even the supporting cast was great. This movie is a time capsule as to what the 80's were about. Movies to have Fun watching and the Music that drove them. What made this movie unsuccessful in the mainstream was the lack of great music videos. As great as the Jim Steninman soundtrack is, it was not what the 80's MTV viewers wanted back then. 30 years later, I still find that soundtrack one of my very favorites of the 80's though. The 80's gave way to the depressing early 90's and that killed these kinds of movies. I am hoping that Michael Pare catches his "break" this time and gets on a show that will show off his chops. I, for one, will watch and am glad to welcome him back. Clay Moorhead Cincinnati OH @claymoor83 on Twitter
March 23, 2011, 12:50 p.m. CST
I love the Michael Pare is not kissing butt or holding back. It would have been great if he would have hit that punk, Rick Moranis. Talk about an overratted comedian. I loved ETC. I have it on dvd. Words and Music baby. I do hate that he called Ewe Boll a genius though. Boll needs to be drawn and quartered for the abominations he has created. That said, maybe he is a genius for being able to convince studios to keep funding him.
I love Michael Paré. Great actor underestimated.
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