Heads-Up Reflection: January’s Cinema Revue selections get recapped, February brings SNL fun, and ‘The Matrix’ gets animated

Hey, Sergio here! This is the Heads-Up Reflection, a preview of February’s written content here on Cinema Revue. Plus, a reflection of the past month of January 2022.

Reflection on January’s Cinema Revue Lineup

January 1992 started strong. Yet, the last two films remembered: “Oh right, it’s January.” The hollowed dumping ground was present and ready for attention. Yet, before that “dump month” stench came, it started great with the bonkers banger that was The Hands That Rocks the Cradle.

Cradle was the encapsulation of everything that makes a Lifetime movie fun trash with seduction plots, backstabbing, and straight-up murder via a Home Alone-styled trap. The fun mostly came from Rebecca DeMornay dominating as Mrs. Peyton Mott. The price of admission is worth paying to see her downright sadistic and evil turn. I also appreciate she does not end up wooing Anabella Sciorra’s husband in the film. That husband took on look at said “I love my wife!” Wife-loving dudes rock. Ernie Hudson as a disabled character still irks me a ton. This is the 90s when intellectually disabled actors were rarely on screen. Yet, looking on it thirty years later, it’s hard to watch especially when DeMornay says the R-word to him. Honey bunches of yikes on that one.

Juice kept the good of the month coming with a hood classic. It truly is unfortunate this is one of two hood films that will be covered, but it’s a good one. It’s not groundbreaking, but it tells a powerful story of how power corrupts. The reason that story (which has been done over and over again) works is Tupac Shakur’s performance. I praised it throughout that review and with good reason. Shakur was brilliant as he was controversial. What was fun to find out after writing the review was that there is an alternate ending in which Bishop decides to off himself as he realizes what he has done. It is kind of a cheese-filled ending, but it also would make the iconic “You got the juice now” line less impactful.

With two good films out of the way, January came swooping in with the bad with Freejack, but not before COVID got to me. I contracted the virus a few days after the review on Juice and had to be in isolation with my partner who also contracted it. She and I were down for the count. It sucked and I could not get things done. I also did not have the desire to watch Freejack or write about it. I did watch all of Yellowjackets on Showtime instead which is incredible throughout. Freejack was a less enjoyable experience than a show about teenage soccer players. It’s not a good movie, but it does have some idea of what it wants to be. It never becomes that at all, but it was not the worst movie.

That honor goes to Shining Through. The review itself was written the day before writing this, but good God, I cannot remember anything significant outside of Michael Douglas killing Nazis. The film fumbles on every level. The nap during it was fantastic though. What makes up for Shining Through‘s pain is knowing this covered a Razzie winner that truly deserved the win. The Razzies are pretentious as heck, but damn, did those nerds get it right.

Here’s January rating respectively:

  • The Hand that Rocks the Cradle – 4 out of 5
  • Juice – 4 out of 5
  • Freejack – 1.5 out of 5
  • Shining Through – 1 out of 5

February 2022 Schedule

February is shaping up to be an oddball month. The ’92 Cinema Revue enters its second month with a beloved comedy classic. The Matrix is entering the beginning of the first end. Let’s see what’s ahead.

2/7: Medicine Man – ’92 Cinema Revue

Sean Connery reteams with John McTiernan for this adventure drama billed as an action film. I cannot wait to see what this one has in store. Connery has discovered a cancer cure with Lorraine Bracco from Goodfellas trying to help him. It was number one briefly thanks to the opening of the film the week after it.

2/9: The Matrix Reloaded – Sequential Cinema

Everyone should make an excuse to revisit The Matrix. Covering the series for Sequential Cinema was an excuse to see them all again. Reloaded gets into world-building for better or worse. I enjoy it a ton personally. Yes, even the Merovingian.

2/14: Wayne’s World – ’92 Cinema Revue

I’m so excited to write about this classic. It’s been a few years since I watched this on the old Film A Week Podcast I used to do with my pal Patrick. Of all the films here turning 30, this one is the one that took me the most by surprise. It still feels fun and fresh on the last watch, so I hope the revisit yields the same result.

2/21: Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot – ’92 Cinema Revue

This has been on my watchlist for years out of curiosity. Do I want to ruin my memories of Estelle Getty in The Golden Girls by watching a practical joke come to fruition? Maybe I do. I love Stallone, but I have a feeling this one may break me.

2/23: The Animatrix – Sequential Cinema

I have never seen The Animatrix. It’s going to be interesting to cover this one. I love covering anthology films because every segment leads to a mini-review. There are also nine segments, so this review may be longer than usual. Prayers to my hands both in typing and taking notes.

2/28: The Mambo Kings – ’92 Cinema Revue

When making the list, this film popped up on the release list leading me to wonder “Why is this one important again?” It’s Antonio Banderas’s English language debut, that’s why. I have a soft spot for movies about music, so this being one of the few will fill that void. Newsies did not make the list due to some movie about shapeshifters. We’ll get to it in April.

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