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In the '80s, no one got sick from these Blue Bells

Depending on what part of the country you live in, you have seen the unfortunate news about the Blue Bell ice cream listeria recall that has shut down the century old Texas-based ice cream company. While we would never wish a shutdown on any business, rest assured that the Blue Bells you get today are tasty and safe for consumption with Young At Heart.

The Blue Bells were a dandy Scottish band that scored several U.K. hits including the 1984 hit Young At Heart that was co-written by Siobhan Fahey of Bananarama. With its cheery violin and harmonies, Young At Heart is infectious and the video is good fun as we follow the travels of the Blue Bells from its mom-and-pop diner origins to the amusement park on their way to fame. The video gets extra points for grandma getting her freak on at the end.

The Blue Bells broke up in the ‘80s but temporarily reunited when a U.K. Volkswagen commercial featuring Young At Heart shot the single back up the U.K. charts all the way to the top where it spent a month at No. 1 in 1993.


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Back off Warchild, seriously: Watch the trailer for the 'Point Break' remake

Let me get off my '80s soapbox for a moment and declare my manic love for 1991's Point Break. Keanu. Swayze. Busey. Hell, even McGinley is amazing. And the lines! Enough lines to quote them to friends for the rest of your natural life. So I don't necessarily blame Hollywood for wanting to tap that magic a second time. So, here it is. Our first look at the NEW Point Break movie, due out Dec. 25.

Well, I made it through about half the trailer. My first thoughts.

1. Granted, I don't go to the movies much these days, but to paraphrase Major League, "who the hell are these guys?" I didn't recognize a single face.

2. The "bad guys" aren't just surfers anymore. They're "extreme athletes." Wonderful. Extreme sports are why I stopped subscribing to ESPN - The Magazine.

3. I'm not the only one who isn't impressed. Or downright angry. The UK's Guardian is tracking fan backlash as well.

To quote Bodhi: "Yo, Johnny! I see you in the next life!"

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This just in: John Cafferty actually had four hits in the '80s, including this gem

Today is the big day for linguists everywhere as the Scripps National Spelling Bee starts its two-day competition with 285 kid spellers taking a stab at correctly spelling words like onomatopoeia and triskaidekaphobia. For those Stuck in the ‘80s, we start our competition out with an easy one, courtesy of John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band: C-I-T-Y.

John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band will always be linked with Eddie and the Cruisers and its soundtrack with songs like On The Dark Side, but the facts are that Cafferty scored four Top 40 hits during the ‘80s, including C-I-T-Y that made it all the way to No. 18 in 1985. There was a promotional video for C-I-T-Y that I remember watching on MTV but since it is not available on Youtube, we give you their American Bandstand visit instead. …

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30 years later, Bond fans still whistle the same tune about 'A View to a Kill'

Is it possible that the worst James Bond movie also has the best theme song? Thirty years ago this week, that's what '80s fans were thinking when they first saw A View to a Kill in movie theaters. Released May 24, 1985, A View to a Kill was the 14th Bond flick and featured the title tune by a bunch of lads calling themselves Duran Duran.

Their song still makes pretty much every concert set list today. The movie? Well, I doubt many Bond completists even have the VHS or DVD in their dustiest of basement shelves.

The plot was straight out of the '80s. Bond, played by the final time by Roger Moore, is up against Max Zorin (Christopher Walken), a wealthy government contractor bent on destroying Silicon Valley and thus creating a microchip monopoly.

The movie won mixed reviews, sometimes through comparison to other weak offerings. One critic wrote: "A View to a Kill is often numbered among the worst of the series, but, upon closer inspection, this film is a vast improvement over Octopussy. Even though Moore sleepwalks his way through the part, making it apparent that he should have departed two films ago, and Tanya Roberts can't act to save her life (although she certainly can scream), we're back to a more conventional, straightforward Bond than the convoluted mess of the previous movie."

Still, A View to a Kill scores only a 36 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Here are five things you might not remember about A View to a Kill on its 30th anniversary.

1. There are differing stories on why Roger Moore retired as Bond after this movie. One report says the actor called it quits when he realized that the mother of co-star Tanya Roberts was younger than he was. Another report says producer Albert Broccoli was going to replace him regardless. Moore was 57 during the shooting.

2. Grace Jones co-starred as May Day and was an unusual customer. She hated early mornings and had to picked up personally by Broccoli's daughter each morning and driven to the shoot.

3. Tanya Roberts got the role after Broccoli saw her in 1982's The Beastmaster. Bo Derek was also considered for the role of Stacey Sutton.

4. The role of Max Zorin was written for David Bowie, but he turned it down (and starred in Labyrinth instead). 

5. A View to a Kill wasn't just Moore's last Bond movie. Louis Maxwell, who played Miss Moneypenny, also makes her final appearance in the movie. …

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New podcast: Hair metal in the '80s ... part 1

For 10 years, Stuck in the '80s has managed to avoid this topic. No, not politics. Not fashion. Hair Metal. The one genre that most of our hosts are grossly and intentionally negligent in knowledge. But no more. This week, guest co-host Dave Dirt -- if that IS his real name -- joins us and takes everyone to school on the "glam boys" of Hair Metal. Turns out, the music is more fun that we thought. Well, at least the song titles are.

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The story of Stan Ridgway and his Vietnam love story 'Camouflage'

Memorial Day has passed and many spent time over the weekend placing flowers in the cemeteries for loved ones departed, including those who served our country. In tribute to those veterans, we give an ‘80s salute with Stan Ridgway and Camouflage.

Camouflage is a great story song that takes place in ‘60s Vietnam. All hope for getting out of the jungle alive appears bleak but out of nowhere the narrator is saved by a mysterious Marine named Camouflage. To share any more about the tale would spoil a great story-telling ending. Despite being an American story, Camouflage did not chart in the U.S., but was a Top 10 hit in Europe.  

Last week, we featured Ridgway teaming up with Stewart Copeland on the Rumble Fish soundtrack but Ridgway will probably be best remembered for his work with Wall of Voodoo. Ridgway still performs and for around $ 31, you can even buy a pretty cool looking Camouflage T-Shirt on his website.

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Memorial Day box office winners in the '80s

A long time, in a galaxy far far … well, the galaxy we're in now, Memorial Day weekend used to mean one thing: box office movie madness - '80s style. Sure, we could have spent our time off at the beach, but that would have meant missing out on flicks like Rocky III or Return of the Jedi.

If you've ever been curious which movies reigned supreme - at least in box office dollars - in the '80s, this list is for you.


1980 - Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back:
Never tell me the odds of winning the weekend box office.

1981 - Bustin' Loose: The only movie on this list that isn't a household name. Richard Pryor stars as an ex-con who gets a second chance, helping relocate a group of special-needs kids cross country in an old school bus. (That's one hell of a mouthful for an elevator pitch.) 

1982 - Rocky III: My prediction for those waiting in box office lines back in 1982? My prediction? Pain…

1983 - Star Wars: Return of the Jedi: Four little words - Sorry about the Ewoks.

1984 - Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom: The worst Indiana Jones film until Kingdom of the Crystal Dull was still good enough to win the box office this holiday weekend.

1985 - Rambo:  First Blood II: "Rambo, this is the theater manager, we're glad you're alive. Where the hell are you? Give us your position and we'll come to pick you up!"

1986 - Cobra: "You're the disease, and I'm the cure." Yeah, Stallone was so big that even one of his worst movies could do no wrong back in '86. 

1987 - Beverly Hills Cop II: "Uh, my name is Johnny Wish-Wishbone. And I am a psychic from the island of St. Croix. And I read in the St. Croix Gazette that Stuck in the '80s is having some trouble figuring out box office performances."

1988 - Crocodile Dundee II: Now THAT'S a box office. Roman numerals equal big box office on Memorial Day in the '80s.  Only two movies on this list aren't sequels.  Maybe we should shut up about the whole "Hollywood is out of ideas" business?

1989 - Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: Stallone may have been big, but Harrison Ford?  Monster.


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The Falcon, the Snowman, David Bowie and Pat Metheny: What do they have in common?

As we wrap up Movie Week on Lost and Found, it is fitting we feature an artist who deftly combined acting and singing in the ‘80s - David Bowie with the haunting This Is Not America.

Whether it was his pioneering days in the ‘70s creating Ziggy Stardust or reinventing himself in the ‘80s as the coolest dude on the planet, David Bowie will always be one of the most influential and revered artists of our lifetime. Even though his videos are iconic, it is ironic that our first ever post of Bowie on Lost and Found is for a video he does not appear in.  This Is Not America is a collaboration between Bowie and jazz guitarist Pat Metheny and was featured in The Falcon and the Snowman. The song reached No. 32 on the singles chart in 1985.

The video for This Is Not America is just straight movie clips from The Falcon and the Snowman that starred Sean Penn and Timothy Hutton about the true story of two Americans who sold secrets to the Soviets. Bowie would consistently star in movies during the ‘80s with a wide variety of roles in films such as Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence; The Hunger, Labyrinth and The Last Temptation of Christ.

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30 years later, critics still feel 'Brewster's Millions' isn't worth a nickel

When you saw Brewster's Millions back in 1985, did it seem familiar at all? As if you'd seen it somewhere before? Released 30 years ago, the 1985 movie was actually the seventh film based on a 1902 novel of the same name.

Written by George Barr McCutcheon, Brewster's Millions tells the story of a young man who unexpectedly inherits a fortune from a rich grandfather. But he can't keep the money; he most spend every cent of it in a short amount of time. If he does so, he inherits an even larger fortune.

The '80s version, released May 22, 1985, starred Richard Pryor as Monty Brewster, a talented but unlucky minor league baseball pitcher who inherits the money from his late great-uncle. John Candy plays his catcher and best friend, who can't understand why Brewster is unloading his fortune so carelessly. (One catch is that nobody can know about the deal for the second inheritance.)

Critics were either confused, mixed or indifferent to the film, one writing "it feels more like an extended montage sequence than a fully-fledged film  – or at least makes you realise how efficiently the 80s montage sequence functioned as a record of expenditure, an itemised receipt of cinematic pleasure, proof you’d got your money’s worth."

On Rotten Tomatoes, Brewster's Millions scored an unimpressive 38 percent fresh rating.

Still, 30 years later, the movie remains beloved (or at least be-liked) by the '80s generation. Here are five things you probably didn't know about Brewster's Millions.

1. The movie was directed by Walter Hill, who in 1982 directed 48 Hours. The movies had a few things in common. Both have scenes filmed in a bar named Torchy's. The main characters in both films each drive a sky-blue Cadillac convertible. Actress Margot Rose appears in both films as a waitress at Torchy's.

2. Pryor was supposed to co-star in 48 Hours, when the movie was in early development in the late '70s. By the '80s, the attention turned to some guy named Eddie Murphy.

3. Other adaptations of Brewster's Millions were released in 1914, 1921, 1926, 1935, 1945 and 1961.

4. In earlier versions of the movie, the hero was required to rid himself of just $1 million. In the 1985 version, the sum rose to $30 million. Earlier in 2015, it was announced that Robert Townsend would be making another remake of the movie and the sum will rise to $100 million.

5. Brewster's Millions was the fourth big-screen movie featuring the late John Candy that was released in 1985. Can you name the others? Summer Rental, Volunteers and Follow That Bird. …

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Can you name Meat and Tommy Turner's favorite high school anthem?

Is anybody in SIT80's Nation having a high school reunion this year? Even if you aren't attending a reunion, don't worry, you will still always have memories of your High School Nights.

Nobody will every make claim that the money you paid to see the abomination Porky's 3 was money well spent, but yet many a hormonically-charged teenage boy in 1985 did just that. Perhaps the best part of Porky's Revenge! was the song High School Nights by Dave Edmunds.

The video puts Edmunds right in the action with most of the Porky's gang including Pee Wee, Tommy Turner, Meat, Wendy and Balbricker as I am sure it was not too much of a problem for the Porky's cast to have time for a call back to recreate some of the movie scenes with Edumunds.  Even with poor reviews, Porky's 3: Revenge! was a money maker and High School Nights even cracked the Top 100 on the singles chart peaking at No. 91. …

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70 years later, love still opens the door for Pete Townshend

Pete Townshend turned 70 yesterday. Ok, I'll make the easy joke... He didn't die before he got old.

Sure, 70 might seem old, but the '60s rocker is still at as he performs with Roger Daltry on their The Who Hits 50 North American and European tour. And, this summer Pete will be releasing a "symphonised" version of the 1973 Who masterpiece ‘Quadrophenia' called ‘Classic Quadrophenia'. And, he will be performing ‘Classic Quadrophenia' at London's Royal Albert Hall in July of this year. And, yesterday, he released his first solo single in over twenty years, the politically charged Guantanamo. And, he will soon be releasing the compilation Truancy: The Very Best of Pete Townshend, which includes a second new song How Can I Help You.

Phew! Slow down, old man!

But this site is a celebration of everything 80s, so let's look again at Pete's highest charting (number 9 in the U.S.) solo single Let My Love Open the Door released in 1980. Originally, Pete meant the song to be about God offering His love to a wayward soul, but the popular notion that the song was of a hopeful lover making sweet promises to another was fine by him.

Happy belated birthday, Pete! Don't ever get old.  …

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I love 'Dune' and sandworms ... but not THIS much

"He who controls the action figures controls the universe!" I just came across this vintage 1984 "poseable" action figure of an Arrakis sandworm from the movie Dune. A very tempting purchase because I know a certain Stuck in the '80s podcast co-host that would totally nerd out for this. Only one problem.

Price tag: $219.99 on How can this be? Is this the Kwisatz Haderach!?!

We would have to have wormsign the likes of which even God has never seen for me to pull the trigger on this.

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About Sheena Easton ... Here's her almost-hit from 'About Last Night'

Which Sheena Easton do you like? Version 1.0, 2.0 or Version 3.0 featured in today's So Far, So Good from the movie About Last Night.

As a matter of personal preference, I like Sheena Easton 1.0 - the pure, good lassie singing Morning Train and For Your Eyes Only. Many prefer Sheena Easton 2.0 - the naughty girl singing Strut and Sugar Walls while being defiled by Prince. In the late ‘80s came Sheena Easton 3.0 - the independent career woman who stars as a plucky working girl in the video for So Far, So Good.

Whichever version you like best, it's all good as Easton can make any song a winner as shown in the video for So Far, So Good.  The video interweaves Easton as a Tess McGill-wannabe making the big presentation for the movie About Last Night, with plenty of clips thrown in of Rob Lowe, Demi Moore, James Belushi and Elizabeth Perkins (in her first film). So Far, So Good was almost a hit, stalling at No. 43 on the singles chart, but About Last Night was a box office winner in 1986 and its soundtrack also included the favorite If Anybody Had A Heart by John Waite. …

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Could this be the best 'forgotten' duet of the '80s? The story of 'Don't Box Me In'

S.E. Hinton's novels were all the rage in the early 80's, with her books spawning no less than four ‘80s movies, including Rumble Fish with the forgotten song Don't Box Me In.

The screen credits for the edgy 1983 Rumble Fish is impressive with lead honors going to Matt Dillon, Mickey Rourke and Diane Lane and supporting roles for Dennis Hopper, Nicolas Cage, Chris Penn, Laurence Fishburne and Tom Waits. Also appearing was author Hinton as a hooker and director Francis Ford Coppola's daughter Sofia.  

Equally edgy was the soundtrack music to Rumble Fish, provided by the Police's Stewart Copeland, that relied on experimental percussion production to go along with the avant-garde high contrast black and white film used to shoot Rumble Fish. For Don't Box Me In, Copeland enlisted Wall of Voodoo singer Stan Ridgway to add to the quirkiness of the music with excellent results. The video is a nice blend of Ridgway and Copeland in the studio and clips from the movie that features 19-year olds Dillon and Cage and the 18-year old Lane.     …

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Watch Simple Minds perform on Billboard Awards show to mark Breakfast Club's 30th anniversary

Thank you, Billboard Music Awards, for showing extra love for the '80s in Sunday night's telecast. First Van Halen and then a surprise appearance by Simple Minds. Introduced by Molly Ringwald, Jim Kerr and the lads were there to celebrate the 30th anniversary of The Breakfast Club and their hit song (Don't You) Forget About Me.

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