Dick Ebert

The History of The World, Part I (1981)

Human history is traced through a series of vignettes, beginning with cavemen awestruck by their own magnificence. Then Moses (Mel Brooks) receives the tablets containing the “15” commandments, and Emperor Nero (Dom DeLuise) presides over a madcap Rome with his wife, Nympho (Madeline Kahn). Jumping ahead, the Spanish Inquisition softens repression with song and dance, and a few centuries later Madame Defarge (Cloris Leachman) is fomenting revolution in France.

The Long Good Friday (1980)

In the late 1970s, Cockney crime boss Harold Shand (Bob Hoskins), a gangster trying to become a legitimate property mogul, has big plans to get the American Mafia to bankroll his transformation of a derelict area of London into the possible venue for a future Olympic Games. However, a series of bombings targets his empire on the very weekend the Americans are in town. Shand is convinced there is a traitor in his organization, and sets out to eliminate the rat in typically ruthless fashion.

Major Payne (1995)

Dick Ebert wonders why Damon Wayans wasn’t in more movies after filming “Major Payne.” Gene Lyons wonders why Damon Wayans was in any more movies after filming “Major Payne.” This 1995 comedy featuring the musical stylings of 2 Live Crew and star power of Michael Ironside and Bam Bam Bigelow...

Hellraiser (1987)

“Hellraiser” spawned an 11-film franchise that neither Dick Ebert nor Gene Lyons had ever seen because they were too afraid of Pinhead. This week, commissioner Jason B. changed all that. Join the Shat Crew as we discuss dysfunctional ’80s couples, sexual deviance and Clive Barker’s thrifty but amateurish abilities as...

No Way Out (1987)

If you enjoy spy movies with no spying, romantic comedies with no laughs and Sean Young movies with no sex appeal, you’ll love 1987’s “No Way Out.” This Kevin Costner thriller spends 45 minutes developing a love affair that goes nowhere, features a computer that can do anything, implicates ’80s...

Apocalypse Now (1979)

When the daughter of a Vietnam veteran asks you to review “Apocalypse Now,” you answer the call. Both Gene and Dick agree this movie is epic, but the topic of Marlon Brando’s weight sparks an all-out war. This 1979 adaptation of “Heart of Darkness” is both miracle and masterpiece, expertly...

Bad Boys (1983)

Teen delinquent Mick O’Brien (Sean Penn) is sent to juvenile hall after unintentionally killing the younger sibling of a rival gang leader, Paco Moreno (Esai Morales), in a drug-deal con gone wrong. Prison life proves even more brutal than the streets when Mick is forced to face off against reigning prison toughs Viking (Clancy Brown) and Tweety (Robert Lee Rush). Worse yet, on the outside, Paco is threatening to take revenge on those close to Mick — including his girlfriend (Ally Sheedy).

Police Academy (1984)

When the mayor of a crime-ridden city loosens the restrictions on entering the police academy in order to get more cops on the street, all manner of oddball characters enlist to join the force. Among the cadets are suave Carey Mahoney (Steve Guttenberg), hulking Moses Hightower (Bubba Smith), beautiful Karen Thompson (Kim Cattrall) and sound effects-generating Larvell Jones (Michael Winslow), who all have to show initiative and courage when they are faced with tough situations out on patrol.