There are movies that just stick with you, whether because you saw them in an old-fashioned (and probably really gross) single-screen theater in the late '90s, or because you remember enjoying them even though you know you only understood roughly half of the jokes, or just because late-'90s Brendan Fraser had a very important impact on your life.
Sometimes it's all three.
That sometimes is the time capsule of '90s-era romantic comedy that is Blast from the Past, which is equal parts odd '90s nostalgia and even odder '90s-era nostalgia for the 1960s. Come for the adorably naive Brendan Fraser trying to convince Alicia Silverstone to join him in his underground bunker, stay for the confusing gender politics.
This movie is turning 20 this year, so we, as is our wont, decided to take a trip down memory lane and give it the old Deja View treatment. As this is one of those movies I will never get sick of talking about, I, as is MY wont, naturally volunteered for the privilege.
Hey, did you know Nathan Fillion is in this?
1. This opening credits sequence is simultaneously extremely effective and endlessly dated.
2. Has Christopher Walken ever been more perfectly cast than as a nerdy, mysterious, probably crazy, but most definitely dorky 1960s-era inventor and paranoiac? I mean, other than that time he played the God of Bed, Bath and Beyond.
3. Yes, take the pot of food you don’t actually need but come BACK for the radio later. You know, there aren’t a lot of single decisions that could change the course of a life but THIS IS PROBABLY ONE OF THEM.
4. Christopher Walken saying “if I have to, I’ll deliver the baby myself” is a particular kind of pregnancy nightmare I imagine many women have.
5. Wow ... he ... is really bad at strong emotion.
7. After I nearly threw up watching him drink hot Dr. Pepper, my friend informed me that he had one a few minutes before and then followed that with “Am I ... Christopher Walken?”
8. Walken’s character, in addition to locking his family in a vault for 30 years for no reason, is also the kind of “inventor” who has to create new and complex ways of doing very simple things that worked just fine before and crap ... AM I CHRISTOPHER WALKEN?
9. Good old-fashioned family bonding. Telling your toddler that one day he will repopulate the Earth.
10. Sissy Spacek realizing the only way to deal with her situation — and 30 years trapped with a lunatic and a small child — is with booze is all of us.
11. Is the rest of this movie just gonna be me appreciating late-'90s-era Brendan Fraser? You tell me.
12. Just trap yourself and your family beneath Los Angeles for 35 years as the neighborhood slowly decays above you and you too could have a burned-out junkie create a religion around your sudden appearance from beneath his floor. Who knew it was so simple?!
13. You’ve gotta expect that a heart attack is inevitable when you live on the diet of a man in the 1960s for 40 years.
14. Oh, Adam. There you go packing your comfort stock certificates like the well-adjusted modern white man that you are.
15. Those pants are a CHOICE.
17. Can Brendan Fraser be that excited to get a phone call from me?
18. Floppy-haired Nathan Fillion as the douchey ex-boyfriend Cliff! This is the best movie.
19. Also, how the hell tall is Brendan Fraser?!
20. He is 6’3”.
21. I love Dave Foley but my main thought is always “How is only one of the Kids in the Hall gay?”
22. Just ... this.
23. While I do think the naïveté would eventually get annoying, I do think it is genuinely attractive when someone is this enthusiastic about everything.
24. And is also Brendan Fraser.
25. And has sweet sweet dance moves.
27. “Isn’t Cliff just a butt with hair?” Is a line I will now be using to keep all my friends from dating ... just men, really.
28. Oh, if only all it took was telling a guy that they are a nice boy but what you need is a nice man to make them grow the hell up and suddenly become 8x more attractive. I’m very confused.
30. Just once I want to fall for a nice boy from a fallout shelter and find out that he’s a secret millionaire.