Thursday, October 30, 2014

Re-Post: Elvira

Here's a re-post of a post originally appearing on October 26, 2011.

The Halloween season has brought to mind the fun, ghoulie aspect of the '80s. 

One of the features of '80s television was Elvira, a spooky gothy she-vixen who hosted a syndicated horror movie show. 

She was dubbed the "mistress of the dark."  

Here's Elvira on a local TV station announcing an upcoming feature. Of course, the movie she is referring to is A Nightmare on Elm Street, with its very '80s ghoul Freddy Krueger.

Her popularity spread beyond the program to include commercials and other appearances. Here she is doing a commercial for Coors Lite beer.

And here is a gratuitous, completely unrelated song from the early '80s by the Oak Ridge Boys, which I just put on here for the heck of it. I dunno, but I'm scared already.

Sing along now:

Elvira, Elvira, my heart is on fire for Elvira.
Eyes that look like heaven, lips like sherry wine 
That girl can sure enough make my little light shine 
I get a funny feelin' up and down my spine 
'Cause I know that my Elvira's mine  

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Moscow On The Hudson

In the course of his career, Robin Williams stepped into many roles, both serious and comedic.  One of my favorite is his part-funny, part-serious part in the 1984 movie Moscow on the Hudson, where Williams played a Russian defector, Vladimir Ivanoff, grappling with his new life in the freedom of America.

The movie does a good job of dramatizing the contrast between the grayness and limitation of life in the former Soviet Union, and the bustling, but imperfect freedom of New York, USA in the '80s.  The movie's message was very relevant in the mid-80s as the cold war continued, and with Williams as the main character, it becomes a veritable time capsule for that era.

There are some very funny moments, as Williams' character discovers all the strange and contradictory components about life in a free society, such as the abundance of products at a local grocery store, which contrasted strongly with the rationing and limited supply under Communism.

And there are indeed some serious moments, as the ups and downs of freedom and capitalism causes Vladimir to question the good and bad in this society. But, ultimately, the movie is a dramatic account of what is positive in western society, even amidst the imperfections and issues still to be dealt with.