ENCINO MAN (1992)

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Elizabeth

The bottom line is, I love Encino Man so much that I hardly know where to start. I was 4 when it was released in theaters but I have no idea how old I was when I first started watching it, but it was definitely young. And Encino Man is fairly clean, besides the occasional vague reference to pot and breasts (ie “melons” and “gonzongas”), it’s pretty PG.

Encino Man is about a high school senior named Dave (Sean Astin) who, for whatever reason, is determined to make a name for himself before high school ends. His best friend, Stoney (Pauly Shore) tries to convince him otherwise, making the valid points that high school is practically over and no one gives a shit anymore. Is it weird that Pauly Shore is the voice of reason in this movie? Especially when his opposition is Sam from Lord of the Rings? Yeah, it’s kind of weird.

While building a pool in his backyard, Dave stumbles upon some ancient pottery, then cave paintings, until finally he finds a frozen caveman. They put the ice in the garage, it melts, and out comes Link (their name for him), played by a mostly mute Brendan Fraser.

One thing I find particularly funny is how, when Dave and Stoney bring Link to school, all the guys are skeptical and all the girls immediately want to have sex with him. I guess that’s sort of a stereotype, at least in movies, but Brendan Fraser looks good in this movie, and you best believe if, when I was a high school senior, a young Brenden Fraser was suddenly a student at my school, I would also be literally jumping on him, just like Robin Tunney’s character does.

The rest of the movie are the inevitable hijinks that ensue, eventually ending with Dave getting his pool and his girl, and Link’s cavewoman wife also coming back to life. Which I always thought was adorable . . . and still think is adorable. I’m not sure what Chris thought of this, though he did laugh at parts, because I know that a good chunk of my love for Encino Man is purely nostalgic. It was one of the VHS tapes my family owned and was a favorite of mine, my mom, and my sister. Who knows how many times we all watched it together. It even made my mom appreciate The Beastie Boys, because she thought one of their songs was in it, even though it’s not! So really, doesn’t Encino Man make everything better?

I also like Encino Man now post-high school (and other stuff) because it sort of reminds me of that feeling of second semester of senior year. When the weather was beautiful and I already got accepted into college and straight up stopped caring about the majority of my classes. I can admit that now that I’m 26, right?

Christopher

This is a movie I have always wanted to see, cause it’s a cover I always saw at Blockbuster, but never got around to watching. It’s actually pretty funny. I’m not a big Brendan Fraser fan but put Sean Astin as the main protagonist and I’m game.

I think what I liked most about this movie is how much Elizabeth loves it. It’s definitely because it’s something her family watched multiple times as a kid. It just reminds me of my family.

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JACK FROST (1998)

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Christopher

I watched this movie a lot when I was a kid. To be fair, it was my sister’s VHS that she must have gotten some Christmas. This movie is beyond dumb. Mostly it’s just way too sad of a story to me. I really hate thinking of death and it used to freak me out even more when I was young.

This movie is pretty terrible but I really found it enjoyable to watch. It’s one of the crazier holiday movies. Now I just want to watch the horror movie of the same name.

Elizabeth

So, Jack Frost is about a kid’s dad who dies and comes back to life as a snowman, which is supposed to be some kind of miracle. Uhhh whut?

Okay, so Michael Keaton literally plays Jack Frost, who is the lead singer of a band literally named “The Jack Frost Band.” They make him out as being this deadbeat dad, but I don’t buy it. He misses one of his son’s hockey games to record a song. It’s shitty that he didn’t tell anyone about needing to miss it, but that’s not that big of a deal. To make up for it, Jack promises his family that they’ll spend Christmas in their mountain home (so they’re rich, right?), but at the last minute gets called away because his band might get a record deal, which we’ve been led to believe is the #1 thing Jack has wanted for his career. The family freaks out. Obviously, this is bad timing. But is it that big of a deal? Am I biased because I don’t really care about Christmas? It just seems ridiculous that he’s supposed to throw away everything he’s worked for just because it’s December 25.

I guess because he’s such a terrible father, Jack dies in a car accident. A year later, his son, Charlie, plays a harmonica Jack gave him, which prompts Jack to come back to life . . . in the form of a snowman? So, he’s being damned, right? That’s the only thing that I can think of. What’s also weird is that when Jack comes back, he doesn’t seem to understand that he’s dead and reincarnated. But it’s a year after he died. So I guess time does stop when  you’re dead and all, but obviously in this universe things don’t stop as far as the soul is concerned, so I don’t understand why he didn’t know what was going on.

Ugh. Jack Frost is boring. And the animation of the snowman is suuuuper creepy. DUMB.