For fans of “Mystery Science Theater 3000,” November is December and Thanksgiving is Christmas.
Since the show was originally on the air in the 1990s, MST3K fans have been trained to get hungry at Thanksgiving and the annual “Turkey Day” marathons that Comedy Central would put on. For a full day, the network would show non-stop episodes of the show, and for several years included bonus segments in between the movies. If you thought your relatives were insufferable before, wait until you had to entertain them in the living room (the one with the good furniture that you were normally banned from), knowing that the marathon was going on in the TV room upstairs.
Normally, this monthly column runs down a few of the really good movies that Netflix is canning at the end of the month, so you catch them while you can. But I gave the list of movies departing Netflix at the end of November a look, and frankly? Good riddance.
Pick of the Week: “Sing Street” — My full review is here. John Carney (“Once”) delivers a delightful ode to candy-coated ’80s pop in this tale of a shy teenage boy at a brutal Dublin public school who finds his voice with the help of some friends, a beguiling older girl, and a folder full of great song lyrics. If you don’t have “Drive It Like You Stole It” in your head for the next week, I worry for you.
For a city whose river once caught on fire, Cleveland doesn’t seem to capture the imagination of many filmmakers. Sure, the Mistake by the Lake plays home to both one of the iconic Christmas movies of all time (“A Christmas Story”) and one of the most iconic baseball movies of all time (“Major League”). But outside of genre and the scruffy charm of the Harvey Pekar biopic “American Slendor,” you don’t see much of Cleveland in the movies.
Which is too bad, since the city embodies all that is both great and tragic about the American city – I would love to see a big-screen adaptation of Mark Weingarten’s epic novel “Crooked River Burning,” for example. But until then, by coincidence, two new films set in Cleveland, “The Land” and “Uncle Nick,” happen to be hitting DVD shelves this month. They’re very different films, but in their own ways both could only be made in Cleveland.