My wife and I watched What about Bob? last night–I love that movie. Bill Murray movies in general are fantastic. In fact, after I post this, maybe I’ll give a run down of the Bill Murray movies I’ve seen and what I think about them. Sure. Why not?
But first, the quote:
“There are two types of people in this world: Those who like Neil Diamond, and those who don’t. My ex-wife loves him.”
I think you could take this one quote and alter it to fit just about any occasion. Perfect.
And now, without further ado, my Bill Murray experience, or rather, all the movies I’ve seen with Bill Murray in them.
Caddyshack (1980)–If you don’t know this movie, then you and I can’t be friends anymore. Classic Bill Murray, and well-known for being his “other movie” with a groundhog in it. Golfing, Chevy Chase and Rodney Dangerfield. Does it get better? And it also has a lovely quote: “So I got that going for me, which is nice.”
Stripes (1981)–Bill Murray does the army. It was originally supposed to be a Cheech and Chong flick, but I think we can all agree it’s for the better that one less Cheech and Chong movie was made. Not one of my favorite Murray movies, but worth a few laughs, especially the ESL bit at the beginning with him and Egon.
Tootsie (1982)–Fantastic movie, even if it’s not really known for being a Bill Murray one. Dustin Hoffman plays a man who plays a woman so he can get an acting job, only to fall in love with a woman who only knows him as a woman. Talk about an interesting premise. Murray agreed to let his name be omitted from the opening credits so that people didn’t think it would be another Caddyshack or Meatballs. That’s a standup guy, right there.
Ghostbusters (1984)–I could watch this movie until my eyes bleed. Except that would be silly, and likely painful. Did you hear they’re making a video game third installment, voiced by all the original actors? Yeah. That’s cool. This movie also has a treasure trove of quotes, from “Are you the Gatekeeper?” to “Human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together… mass hysteria!” AND, to top it all off, it has a cool library scene. That’s what I’m talkin’ ’bout.
Little Shop of Horrors (1986)–Bill Murray has a brief role in this great musical (with music done by the Disney Ashman and Menken duo). He plays a masochistic patient of Steve Martin the Dentist. Interestingly, this movie is an adaptation of a musical that’s an adaptation of a movie that was shot in two days. It was also directed by Frank Oz, voice of Miss Piggy, Bert, Yoda and Cookie Monster. He also directed What about Bob?
Scrooged (1988)–Bill Murray does Dickens. Many people hate this adaptation of Christmas Carol. I don’t. This is likely an indication of how much I like Murray, not how good the film is. It’s twisted and fun. Any movie where they suggest stapling antlers to mice must be a good thing.
Ghostbusters II (1989)–Because how can you have a movie as good as Ghostbusters and not try to milk it for more moola? Not nearly as good as the first, but I’ll take anything where I can see Venkman, Spengler and Stantz back in action.
What about Bob? (1991)–Already posted about this in my main post for today.
Groundhog Day (1993)–If you don’t know my love for this film, then you don’t know me. I’ll officially go on record. This is my favorite movie. No, it’s not life altering. Yes, there are more “important” movies out there, but none is such a perfect mix of viewing pleasure, and this is the one movie that actually gets better for me every time I see it. It’s like I’m living the experience with Murray each time.
Ed Wood (1994)–One of Tim Burton’s best films. Not for everyone, although I enjoyed it. Murray has a small part in this.
Kingpin (1996)–When you get down to it, this is a really dirty film. At least that’s what I remember it as. It’s one of the few movies I actually felt uncomfortable watching in high school. But it’s got Bill Murray in it (as a villainous bowler), and I’ve seen it, so . . . there you go.
The Man Who Knew Too Little (1997)–Bill Murray does spy movies. A favorite of mine. Bill Murray thinks he’s in the middle of a “real life theater” production, when actually he’s in the middle of real espionage. Good times.
Cradle Will Rock (1999)–Real life story taken from the 1930s. It’s got Murray, John Cusak, John Turturro, and Jack Black, plus a mess of other stars. Didn’t love it, but found it diverting, all things considered.
Charlie’s Angels (2000)–This is one of those movies I really enjoyed in the theaters, but it’s really died for me since then. Probably because they didn’t use Bill Murray nearly enough. Sill McG.
The Royal Tennenbaums (2001)–Love this movie. Complex and intriguing, with some great actors and actresses doing their thing. Quirky portrayal of a rich family. I’d like to rewatch it sometime soon here.
Lost in Translation (2003)–Bill Murray was robbed. Robbed, I say! Should have won the Oscar for best actor. Lousy Sean Penn. Grrr. Fantastic movie–definitely one of the “departure” movies of Murray over the years. When you take a step back and look at where he started and where he is now, it’s a big contrast. In this one, he plays a famous actor doing ads in Japan, feeling disconnected from life and all that jazz. Great film.
So as you can see, I’m much better honed on my early Bill Murray years than I am on the later stuff. I just don’t get to theaters as much as I’d like to these days. But that will change. Someday. When I live in a town where the theater only charges $5 for first run movies–I must go more often. Must.