What Parade was in Ferris Bueller?

ferris parade

I’ve lived in Chicago almost 10 years and the one question that I keep asking myself over and over is what the hell parade are they at in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off? I’ve been to many a Chicago parade and none have seemed so fun, so happy, and so full of dance.

My first thought was the Chicago Gay Pride parade, which might explain the sudden outbreak of choreographed dance. However, the Pride parade takes place well after high school graduation and doesn’t run through downtown Chicago. It could be the St. Patrick’s Day parade, but the water isn’t green (Chicago dyes the river every year), and the crowd has a general lack of green… and beer.

As it turns out the parade in the film was an actual parade. John Hughes shot the scene during the Von Steuben Day parade with real by-standers, most of whom were surprised to see Matthew Broderick singing “Danke Schoen.” The Von Steuben Day parade is a German-American Parade (which explains the dancing German girls) that is held at the end of September. Problem is the movie doesn’t place in September. What we know is that the movie takes place toward the end of the school year (numerous mentions of graduating soon) and after baseball season has begun (hey-batter-batter-batter-swing-batter). This means Ferris Bueller’s Day Off takes place somewhere between the beginning of April and the middle of June.

Major holidays that fall between April and June include Easter, Secretary’s Day, National Day of Prayer, Mother’s Day, Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, and Flag Day. Of these, there are actual Easter parades and Memorial Day parades. There’s also a Polish Constitution Day Parade that takes place in the beginning of May. The problem is the Easter, Memorial, and Polish Constitution Day parades all take are celebrated either on the a Saturday or Sunday, and since Ferris is taking a day off, these parades would be highly unlikely. Of the other holidays the only two to fall on a weekday in 1986 are Secretary’s Day and the National Day of Prayer.

So, unless there was some praying I missed in the film (Cameron did go to Egypt Land), I’d have to assume the parade in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off was a very special Secretary’s Day parade. Or the Abe Froman Memorial Meat Day parade. Or the Leopard Print Appreciation parade.

Welcome to Casa de Kilmer

Val Kilmer Likes Breakfast

Kilmer Batman

Some of you may remember Val Kilmer from movies (no, it’s true, he was in genuine moving pictures), some of them actually very good, a lot of them not. He has the classic career destruction: he went from staring roles in good movies, supporting roles in good movies, staring roles in bad movies, supporting roles in bad movies, voice of KITT. On a long enough trajectory all great actors will eventually be reduced to the voice of KITT (Mr. Feeny, anyone?). But, maybe, this just prepared him for his greatest role of all… owner and proprietor of his very own Bed & Breakfast.

Why make blockbuster movies when there’s beds to be made and breakfasts to be had? Why work out when you can have a second breakfast? Why study lines when there’s pancakes around? And this is how Val Kilmer’s career has spiraled out of control. If you ever wondered what was filling that cod piece in Batman Forever, it was bacon.

As you can clearly see as Kilmer’s career has gone down, his biscuits and gravy intake has increased.

Kilmer Food Chart

Though, if you thought the saddest part of this story was Val Kilmer opening a Bed & Breakfast you’d be wrong. The saddest part is he’s having a hard time opening a Bed & Breakfast. His New Mexico community is outraged that Kilmer is turning his 6000-acre Pecos River Ranch into a B&B, not because they have anything against hash browns but because of remarks Kilmer made in 2003 Rolling Stone. He was quoted as saying that he lived in “the homicide capital of the Southwest” and that “80 percent of the people in my county are drunk.”

Which also begs the question, why would you want to sleep or eat in the murder capital of the world? That’s not the way to draw customers to your Casa de Kilmer.

Neighbors tried to block Kilmer in a formal community hearing, however, Kilmer won the crowd over with a heartfelt apology and by explaining how he was grossly misquoted. As in the homicide capital of the Southwest isn’t as bad as the homicide capital of the Northeast, and 80 percent of the people in the county are drunk… on love. Say what you want about his career, Kilmer’s still got some acting chops.

Though, I’d like to think that since Val Kilmer is a method acting that all this is leading to the greatest B&B movie of all time. Perhaps about a down-on-his-luck actor forced to turn his palatial mansion into a semi-profitable Bed & Breakfast (Of course, there will probably be a scene where he raises funds at a bikini car wash). And all of Kilmer’s career choices since Heat were all in preparation for this movie because he had to be an authentic has been for the movie. It could culminate in some sort of eating contest between Kilmer and Steven Seagal.

What does Back to the Future Say about You?

bttf 2bttf 3

There are two kinds of people in this world: those who like Back to the Future II and those who like Back to the Future III. This is like Bloods vs Crips, Burt or Ernie, Team Edward vs Team Jacob. They have a lot in common, yet are fundamentally different. Wait, you say, what about the original Back to the Future? Well, of course, no one would choose II or III if the first was on the table. So, forget about the first movie for a second, and take your pick.

If you like Back to the Future II, you generally look to the future. You’re very impressed by things that float, i.e. hover boards, flying cars, wood, ducks, Michael Phelps, wooden Michael Phelps (with or without duck feathers). You have a good sense of humor; you’re easily amused, and it’s easy for you to amuse others. Do you like short cuts? Hell, yes! Why work hard in life when you can just buy a Grays Sports Almanac? Of course, such plans rarely work out and usually end with someone getting struck by a bolt of lightning. You take chances though, and you’re more than willing to work hard to clean up any mistakes (such as any pesky temporal paradoxes). And much like at the end of the movie, your day ends with the words, “To be Concluded…” meaning you’re not big on finishing what you started, though you are pretty good at Wild Gunman, so you got that going for you.

Back to the Future III is for those who like to look towards the past. You analyze history and make logical decisions based off that history. Much like the Doc, you’re alive and well, you’re stuck in the past, but you’re alive. Basically, your friends need to have seen every movie in the 80’s to even get half of your references. You’re also more into the plot than special effects, although, you often mistake this for good taste. And you’re perfectly alright with people calling you yellow (most likely because you’ve never been in any sort of fight). Boring, predictable, with a penchant for ZZ Top style beards, yet ultimately a romantic at heart. One thing is for certain though BTTF III fans are much better with picking up the ladies:

Ultimately, we’re all the same though because everyone’s favorite Back to the Future movie is the first one. Let’s not concentrate on our differences, but on our similarities. Roads, we don’t need roads… the power of love and all that nonsense.

To be Continued at the Gunaxin podcast

Amy Sedaris: Making Crazy so Cute

Amy Cake

It’s hard to put my finger on my obsession with Amy Sedaris. You first probably met Amy as Jerri Blank on Strangers with Candy, a forty-six year-old high school freshman—a boozer, a user, and a loser. Maybe, it wasn’t love at first sight, but it was close. It probably wasn’t until after I realized Jerri Blank wasn’t Amy Sedaris’ actual face, but a face she chose to make. Yes, she wanted to look like that.

It could be her crazy eyes. Most girls with crazy eyes are in the category of stalker, boil your bunny eyes, but Amy Sedaris has lovely crazy eyes. Like things are going to get weird, but in a good way, in a non-chopping up your limbs way, and that’s a good thing. These are wonderful crazy eyes full of acceptance and wonder.

Maybe, it’s something like if Sedaris has a fetish for the ugly, well, do I got the ugly for her. Although, I think it’s something deeper than just looks. It’s the feeling that not only would she accept all my idiosyncrasies, which are strange and arcane at best, but she would crave them. All strange men are looking for women who are not just willing enough to ignore the peculiarities, but to love them, and that’s just fantasy. Amy is that possibility.

I think it’s her dream of just being awful looking. Most beautiful women are very content being beautiful, but she wants to be hideous. That’s something you really have to admire. An her odd is odder than my odd. So, not only is she better looking than me, but she’s weirder than me, too. That’s a little intimidating. Amy married an imaginary husband named Glenn (her previous imaginary boyfriend, Ricky, was murdered). I’m both jealous of both Glenn for marrying Amy and for Amy for thinking up Glenn.

Sedaris mostly stars now as MILF’s and secretaries, Hollywood I guess just isn’t ready for the real Amy Sedaris, whoever that is.

Strangers with Candy
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Captain America vs Human Torch

Chris Evans Captain AmericaChris Evans Human Torch

With the concept art for Captain American now running rampant on the internet, I was wondering if anyone else had any issues with Chris Evans putting on the red, white, and blue? I don’t really have a problem with Chris Evans in and of himself, he has a certain douche-appeal that Hollywood seems to enjoy, the problem is he’s already played the Human Torch. Everyone wanted to play Cap in the new big screen adaption with a laundry list of actors that included Ryan Phillippe, John Krasinski, Mike Vogel, Wilson Bethel, Chace Crawford, Scott Porter, and Michael Cassidy. Will Smith was even rumored at one point. And after such an extensive search, the studio execs decided on Chris Evans, a guy who has already played a Marvel superhero. I would have rather them have given Jim from the Office a shot than to reuse someone we’ve already seen in tights and didn’t particularly like in tights.

Was Tobey Maguire not available to play Captain America? Hugh Jackman too busy? What about Robert Downey Jr. (he could have played both Captain America and Iron Man like Hayley Mills in the Parent Trap movies)? It’s ok to be in multiple superhero movies or scifi franchises, hot actresses do it all the time, but playing different heroes in same universe of characters is a little weird. This is like the same guy playing both Batman and Superman.

Of course, it might be a different scenario if Chris Evans was the bright spot in the Fantastic Four movies. If we saw those movies and were like, “That just sucked, but oh, that Chris Evans he was just superb, I could feel the flames coming off the screen.” Instead we walked away with, “That just sucked, but I would still do Jessica Alba.” And, at the end of the day, Alba would definitely be a more logical choice to play Captain America. I assume the good people at Marvel have seen the Fantastic Four movies, and were familiar with him crapping it up as Johnny Storm before making their final decision.

It gets a little worse though. Another rumor about Captain America: The First Avenger is that at some point in the film, Cap is going to team up with The Invaders. The invaders are an old school WWII superhero team that included Captain America, the Sub-Mariner, and, you guessed it, the Human Torch. If you didn’t know, before there was a Human Torch in the Fantastic Four, there was another character with the exact same name, powers, and appearance in the 1940’s. If there’s a scene where Captain America looks at the Human Torch and says something like, “You seem very familiar,” I think I’ll just go ahead and leave the theater.

Come on Marvel, let’s just think out side the box for a second, and find someone fresh for Captain America. Here are a few alternatives to Chris Evans:

Possible Captain America Alternatives
Ben Affleck
Eric Bana
James Franco
James Marsden
Jay Underwood
Matt Salinger
Nicolas Cage
Ryan Reynolds
The Principal from Ferris Bueller
Thomas Jane
Wesley Snipes

If the really wanted to reuse someone they should have gone with Dolph Lundgren (The original and arguably best movie Punisher). He’s got the hair and the muscles. And nothing says America like Dolph Lundgren.

Top 10 Giant Monsters and/or Heroes

I have returned from Japan (wall-to-wall knee socks and not a single person who spoke English) and to celebrate I thought I’d rejoice with some big ass monsters.

For a relatively small people, the Japanese like their monsters large and their heroes equally as large. Maybe, they’re overcompensating, or maybe, it’s just logistics. I think a normal sized monster would get lost in Japan, the subway system is like a maze crowded with people who are equally clueless about how to get out of the maze, regardless to say, Godzilla doesn’t ride the subway. It’s much easier to walk over buildings than under buildings.

Maybe, Tokyo, the world’s largest city, just needs the world’s largest monsters. Or maybe there’s something left over from the atomic bomb… a massive explosion equals a massive fear and only something equally large with mass and substance deserves that sort of attention.

And, of course, radiation causing growths and mutations. Not to mention actual breakthroughs in robotics and computers, technology being at the heart of every giant robot after all. Does Japan dream of giants creatures, or do giant creatures dream of Japan? Anyway on with the list.

Big Man Japan

He’s big. He’s a man. He’s in Japan. That’s about it. He’s not a good hero, he’s not a good fighter, but he certainly does live up to his name. He fights mildly retarded giant monsters, which is then video taped for a poorly rated late night show. While, not necessarily a good movie, it does a pretty good job of answering the questions, what if Japan had to make giant heroes to fight giant monsters for reals, yo (The question on all our minds)? The ending is spectacularly bizarre though, if you do want to watch Big Man Japan, make sure you sit through the whole thing.


In Japan, every hero has a giant robot regardless of whether they need one or not. Even Spider-man had a giant robot. While, the Power Rangers weren’t the first team to ever utilize the giant team based fighting machine (I’ll work the right hand… And I’ll control the left leg), it might be among the most famous. Every episode of Power Rangers was exactly the same: a goofy themed monster beat the crap out of the Power Rangers until they finally combine their weapons to destroy it, the monster grows big, they get in their giant Zord, monster knocks around Zord, and they finally use their big sword and kill the monster. I ask, why not just go straight to the big robot, and straight to the sword? It would save everyone a lot of time, and most likely save the city loads in property damage.


Gundam, Zoids, exoskeletons, Metal Gear, Robotech, Battletech, what have you… pretty much tack -tech or -mech on the end and you got yourself a big goddamn robot. Well, more of a tank or battle suit. In the future, we will pilot giant sword wielding humanoid machines, but before then let’s really think this through. There’s a reason the army hasn’t rolled out AT-AT’s. We already have the best technology in existence, it’s called the wheel. There’s like a million moving parts that goes into making a robot walking, but the beautiful thing about the wheel is all you have to do is spin it.

Mr. Stay Puft

How could I possible go a day without making some sort of Bill Murray reference? The first non-Japanese monster was forged by campfires of Lake Waconda. The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man is the destructive form of Gozer the Gozerian conjured by Ray Stantz. I have to say a 100-foot-tall marshmallow man is as believable or more believable than most mutant lizards or giant machines.

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