Archive for the movies Category

Hatta’s Film Fest…”The Mack” and “Juice”

Posted in 97.9 the Box, houston, movies, music, radio with tags on June 10, 2009 by jimbeazy

What’s up everyone?  Just wanted to give you a quick recap of Hatta’s Film Fest that went down last night Tuesday June 9th. 

ssposterWhen I walked in I saw a nice crowd and most were drinking…this is a good thing because my short was first.  After a sound miscue, we started the film, “Soul Searching,” over and it played well.  It was the 18 minute “film festival” version of the movie.  As a writer/producer on the movie, there is always things you’d like to do different, but it was great to see it on big screen.  Hatta liked the longer cut better and I do also.  However, many festivals try to squeeze in as many movies as possible so our 18 minute cut gives us a better chance of earning a screening spot.

mack1After 7, it was then time for “The Mack,” a 70’s pimp movie that lived up to Hatta’s hype.  Max Julien played “Goldie” a hustler fresh out of prison and back on the streets.  Goldie loved his momma, hypnotized his hoes, and rose to be “the playa of the year” before… well you’ll have to watch it.  While the soundtrack doesn’t have the pop of Curtis Mayfield’s “Superfly,” Willie Hutch does a good capturing the feel of the streets of Oakland.  The most famous track “I Choose You” (used for UGK’s “International Players Anthem) not only is jammin’ but it also is a major plot point in the film.  Richard Pryor plays Goldie’s main friend and as Hatta stated in his commentary … was high during fiming.  In a couple scenes, this tidbit was evident.  Hatta also pointed out the real pimps in the movies and the real situations incorporated into the film.  Roger E. Mosely, later of “Magnum P.I.” fame, effectively plays Goldie’s “save the streets” brother.  One of best performance in the movie comes from Dick Anthony Williams as Pretty Toney.  Williams has been in tons of movies, most notably for me as Steve Martin’s brother in “The Jerk.”  All in all, a better made film than last month’s “Superfly” (1972), which is quite an accomplishment.

juiceAfter “The Mack,” it was time for Ernest Dickerson’s “Juice” (1992).  Hot of off 1991’s “Boyz in the Hood,”  the movie’s high production values and casting/cameos of who’s who at the time (Queen Latifah, Cindy Herron “En Vogue, Fab Five Freddy and more) make it an effective snapshot of the time.  The movie is fueled by Tupac Shakur’s psycho character “Bishop” and plays well as a morality tale of street violence.

All in all, a great time at the movies…what classic do you want to see on the big screen next?  The Warriors?  Foxy Brown? Shaft? Stay tuned…

…And keep listening to the Madd Hatta Show on 97.9 the Box in Houston, Texas… and online at



Three reasons to watch the original “Taking of Pelham 1-2-3” (1974)

Posted in movies with tags on June 9, 2009 by jimbeazy

Hey folks!  As many radio listeners in Houston know (hopefully), I’m a big movie fan.  So, when I heard they were re-making the “Taking of Pelham 1-2-3” it make me think two things.  One, what a great lost movie of the 70’s it is.  And two, they are probably gonna screw it up.  But hold up, I’m not here to judge (because I haven’t seen the new one), I’m here to tell you why you may want to rent or watch on demand (Hatta tells me its available from Comcast) the original.  So, here’s the three reasons to see:The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3 (1974) Poster

1. The Cast (especially the leads) – Walter Matthau as the ordinary every day worker/ hero and Robert Shaw as the calm, yet deadly villain.  Okay, so I’m kind of biased as I quote both the original “Bad News Bears” (Matthau as Morris Buttermaker) and “Jaws” (Shaw as Captain Quint) a lot.  As a big Matthau fan,  he bring a kind of realism to the ordinary guy caught in extraordinary circumstances that many actors have a hard time capturing.  His interaction with the transit crew around him including a pre-Seinfeld Jerry Stiller and the always underrated Dick O’Neill (Frosty the carnival barker in “The Jerk”) makes it seem like this is actually how it would go down.  Shaw brings a silent menace to the mercenary leader of the hi-jacking crew.  He’s calculated, deadly and in control.  The rest of the hi-jackers, Martin Balsam, Hector Elizondo, and Earl Hindman (Wilson from “Home Improvement”) all do fine too.  Walter Matthau

2. The Tone – It’s sometimes hard to explain to the younger “explosion-every-second” movie-goer the pacing of  some of the films of the 70’s.  The tone of the some of films take some patience, but in the end you’ll fell like you have been transported.  The slow-pacing at the beginning of the original “Planet of the Apes” (1968) actually works in building up to great payoff.  “Pelham” moves faster, but it is not in anyway “Transformers.”  The last act really cooks as you get it all: crashing cars, speeding trains, and well, I don’t want to give away anything else. There’s also an undertone of humor that points out the politics, racism, sexism and any other ism of the time.  This was a time when movies weren’t tested, changed, tested again, edited…etc.  The movie was made and released.  It is not a family film either, its  an R-rated movie of the 70’s with no nudity, so there is lot of profanity and violence.shawpelham

3. The End – The 70’s was a great decade for classic movie endings.  I think a lot were effective because all the credits would roll at the front of the movie leaving little recovery time after a shocking ending.  The lights would come up and you head out thinking “I didn’t see that coming.”  Well “Pelham” is not earth shattering like “Planet of the Apes,” but its rare to find a movie that ends with a look that stays in your brain forever.  I remember seeing the original on the “CBS Thursday Movie” (or something )when I was maybe 10.  When I watched it recently, seeing the end again really took me back.pelpost1

Well, there you have it.  But, this is just an opinion.  I like Denzel.  I like Travolta.  So, let’s all hope they make a new classic.