Today, take a journey with me back to 1994, when I took the phrase 'terrible twos' to a whole new dimension. Whilst I was hitting other children and demanding hoola hoops, 1994 saw some iconic films released (spoiler: it was a GREAT year for Jim Carrey)! Without further ado, let's get stuck in...
"I'm sorry I had to fight in the middle of your Black Panther party."Like a few of the films in this blog feature, I didn't watch Forrest Gump until about 10 years after it was released - but I don't think it's possible to curate a list of top '90s films without mentioning this absolute classic. Besides being one of the most quotable films in history (box of chocolates anyone?) Tom Hanks manages to portray a character of questionable social skills and 'below average IQ' with such warmth and humour that we rooting for him within the first 5 minutes of his leg braces being removed. The clever use of historical context permeates the film with a sense of irony (on Vietnam: "We was always taking long walks, and we was always looking for a guy named "Charlie""). It's one of the first films that wholeheartedly deals with disability, both mental and physical, without flinching and with real heart - not to mention a bangin' soundtrack. #ForrestandJennyForever
|"They just aren't 99p any more..."|
See the original 1994 trailer, here (first 3 mins 40 seconds). It's a bit epic.
THE LION KING
"Asante sana squash banana, wewe nungu mimi hapana!"From the opening sunrise to the closing roar of Simba atop pride rock, this is an undeniable masterpiece. I think 100% of people reading this will have seen The Lion King at least 10 times so I won't bore you with the details, just my highlights: Hans Zimmer's magical score inflected with African harmonies and rhythms, Scar's sarcastic put downs ("A monkey's uncle") Mufasa's afterlife speech ("REMEMBER WHO YOU ARE") and Rafiki completely trolling Simba ("The past can hurt..."). Throw in some slimy yet satisfying grubs, a warthog hula dance and some sassy hyenas and what's not to love?
Enjoy this original trailer (which, interestingly, sells the film on how the illustrators captured animal characters on screen).
THE SANTA CLAUSE
"Charlie, stay away from those things. They're reindeer, you don't know where they've been. They all look like they've got key lime disease.""Oh, c'mon Soph, not ANOTHER Christmas film!!" Is what a cynical person would say. It's not my fault that the film studios in the '90s seemed to be obsessed with outdoing each other in festive frivolity - and I was a child at the time. The Santa Clause (the first one, not any of the sub-standard sequels) was frequently watched in my house, and I have strong memories of 'elves with attitude' (shudder), Santa's monogrammed silk PJs and a storm of CGI reindeer. I mean, it really wouldn't be a bad thing if Father Christmas did turn out to be Tim Allen, would it? Especially as he does bear more that a passing resemblance to my dad...
|Separated at birth?|
"THAT'S A SPICY MEATBALL!"One of THREE major Jim Carrey hits of 1994 alone (scroll down for more), I think this is possibly his greatest 'zany yet also quite scary' performance - other contenders are The Grinch and Count Olaf. A character that would be at home as a villain in one of Tim Burton's Batman films, Carrey has a field day being the all shooting, all dancing, maraca shaking anti-hero, who becomes a green skinned menace whenever puts on an enchanted wooden mask he randomly found (I mean, you can't make this stuff up). A 'love or hate' film, I've always been a sucker for Carrey's amazing physical comedy, ad lib and impressive gurning - so it's a thumbs up from me.
|Actual image of me eating a garlic baguette|
See what audiences were in for in full colourful comic book glory, here.
ACE VENTURA: PET DETECTIVE
"If I'd been drinking out of the toilet, I might've been killed."Yes, it's ridiculous. Yes, the script is pretty awful, the plot flimsy. Yes, it's bad taste. But as a kid in the '90s, there was no better prospect than Jim Carrey frolicking around in a Hawaiian shirt, surrounded by tropical animals and spouting toilet humour. He somehow managed to become a real-life cartoon character and - not gonna lie - I loved it.
|"What can I say, it pays the bills!"|
That comes to the end of 1994. I may have missed out such classics as Pulp Fiction and The Shawshank Redemption, but I think I've hit on the films resonated with me more...
Expect the joys of 1995 in the next week or so, but in the meantime, we'll play out 1994 with this contemporary mini disco anthem: