It is summertime, which means it’s time for popcorn flicks and blockbuster entertainment.
When I look back, it is amazing how many times my friends and I shared bonding moments built around watching movies.
We can recall not only the movie, but where we watched it, scenes and how we reacted to it.
The movies we have seen together run the gamut, from comedies to thrillers to horror to adult.
The first R-rated ones I saw were “Animal House” and a double-feature of “Kentucky Fried Movie” and “Groove Tube.”
If I recall correctly, we had Pedro’s older brother come with us as our “guardian” since we were 16 and worried about the Loew’s American in the Bronx enforcing the MPAA age restriction.
There are those movies that endure (“Airplane!” of course being one of them) and there are those dogs of a movie that are best forgotten.
But half the fun of recalling some of those godawful flicks is the chance for my friends to break my chops that it was MY idea to go see them.
Two that come to mind: “Squeeze Play,” a pseudo sex romp brought to you by the high-caliber Troma Films company, and “Vice Squad,” a violent, dark film with few redeeming qualities.
But for memorable movie watching — as in like impossible to erase the imprint for your brain — the first-place trophy goes to AMR crew member Rich Rodriguez who a few years ago brought to the man cave “Requiem for a Dream” and “Human Centipede.”
We were crowded into a small room to watch “Requiem,” of which I knew nothing. It was an incredible movie about addiction but so dark and heavy that I needed a drink when it was over.
It is one of those movies, like “Schindler’s List” or “Saving Private Ryan” that you are glad you have seen but cannot imagine ever watching a second time.
And then, as if that did not harsh our mellow enough, Rich popped in the DVD for “Human Centipede,” which was so vile and disgusting and repulsive that we demanded we watch it on fast-forward! (For an idea of how bad it was, consider that its sequel was banned in Britain!)
On a more uplifting note, there was the time we gathered at Pedro’s to watch “Ted,” the story of the raunchy, foul-mouthed stuffed teddy bear who comes to life.
At points we were laughing so hard and loud that we had to stop the movie and replay scenes because we were missing dialogue. That was a good time!
The crowning glory of movie-going moments, though, belongs to troublemaker Pedro following our viewing of “Return of the Jedi.”
We caught an early showing of the much-anticipated third installment of the “Star Wars” trilogy.
We exited the theater and there was a line literally down the block for movie-goers waiting to get in.
So what does Pedro do?
Like the inmates in the Jimmy Cagney prison cafeteria scene where word is relayed that “Ma’s dead,” Pedro delivers a major spoiler by announcing up and down the line of those waiting for tickets: “Darth Vader dies! Darth Vader dies!”
It was a wonder that Darth Vader was not the only one who died that night!
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