Toy Box Movies, pt. 6 - Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Happy Wednesday!  As our fascinating exploration of the new movie posters in the Toy Box continues, we take a look at the 1997 Dustin Hoffman, John Travolta thriller Mad City.  The Greek-born director Costa-Gavras made a name for himself with compelling and thought-provoking international action films such as 1969's Z (which won the Academy Award that year for Best Foreign Film), 1972's State of Seige, and Missing from 1982.  

Mad City is one of Costa-Gavras' rare America-based films, and tells the story of a desperate, recently unemployed security guard looking for vengeance against his former boss.  When the media become involved, things take a turn for the worst.  Costa-Gavras' effort to criticize the inclination of people of the press to exploit society's unfortunates fell flat with the movie-going public, which isn't to say it does not merit viewing.  Give it a look and make the call for yourself.  What do you think?
QUESTION:  What other movie did Dustin Hoffman star in that addressed the impact of the media on society?
A)  All the President's Men
B)  Meet the Fockers
C)  The Graduate
D)  Little Big Man
ANSWER BELOW

A SAD DAY FOR OLDSMOBILE.  It can be said without exaggeration that Ransom E. Olds and his 1901 Curved-Dash Oldsmobile initiated the modern automotive industry in the United States.  His company would go through many different changes after that, notably becoming a part of General Motors within the decade. But on this day in 2004, after 107 years in existence, the Oldsmobile brand was retired forever.  General Motors was in trouble by 2004 - and just a few years later would need a government bail out to avoid complete dissolution.  We will always have our memories (and, in the case of the American Treasure Tour, some wonderful cars - we have a replica 1901 Olds and a restored 1905 Olds on display!)

NINE LIVES OF PFEIFFER.  It's hard to believe that Michelle Pfeiffer is turning 57 today.  The beautiful blonde has been acting since the late-1970s (she was a finalist to replace Kate Jackson on Charlie's Angels, but lost out to Shelley Hack).  Her early roles amounted to not much, as she was cast for her looks and not her talent.  It wasn't until the 1983 exploitation film Scarface with Al Pacino that Pfeiffer received positive reviews - odd considering the quality of the film itself, but her star rose such that she was nominated for Best Actress for 1989's The Fabulous Baker Boys.  Her defeat didn't stop her, and she has performed on screen and in the theater to varied reviews ever since.  Regardless, happy birthday, Michelle!  Keep on keeping on.

QUOTE:  Like all parents, my husband and I just do the best we can, hold our breath and hope we've set enough money aside for our kids' therapy. - Michelle Pfeiffer

ANSWER:  All the President's Men was about the Watergate break-in and the eventual destruction of the Nixon presidency.