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My Love of Movies – Sleepers

I have always been a fan of film. It’s something about seeing a good flick. I love movies and I can see my love for movies is already rubbing off on my son. When I think about it there are three experiences that started my love for movies.

First I remember going to the movies with my cousins William and Greg when I was really young. We would go to the “Normal Theater” on 119th & Normal and “The Roseland Theater” on 113th & Michigan. It was cool because I was the little cousin hanging out with my older cousins. No mom or dad to cover my eyes when something questionable came on. As I remember theaters were pretty lacked on the ratings system back in the day? So I saw plenty of Rated R movies way before I turned 13!

Then there was the outdoor drive-in movie theater. I know for me and many others it played a role in my enjoyment of movies. We lived in the Hundreds so my dad would take the whole family out to the Halsted Twin on Chicago’s south side. Now someone reading this under the age of thirty my not know even know what a drive-in is? You park your car in a large lot with a huge movie screen next to an external speaker. You mount the speaker to your window, turn up the volume and bam! I know it sounds low tech but that’s the way a lot of folks saw movies. The only drawback being a kid was most of the time it would usually be a triple feature. That meant sitting through the first two flicks until the main feature came on. I am a sleepy head by nature so sometimes I’d miss the main feature.

Then in about 1985 or 1986 a mom and pop video store opened on 111th and Halsted called “Classic Sound and Video”.  This is around the same time we got our first VCR. Anyone old enough to remember knows that was a big deal! Now we can rent movies…it was on! This is what I think peaked my interest in film. We would rent about 2-3 movies twice a week. Some of my fondest memories of my Dad who passed away come from those days. We would roll to the store and my dad would say “okay rob go pick out something good”! A lot of times after watching a movie he really enjoyed he would say “That flick was cold”!

So in the spirit of the DJ, I want to share my love for movies. Let me start by saying I am not a movie snob. I am not really into foreign movies with subtitles, nothing against them…I did see “City of God” and liked it. They are just not my first choice. Hey if there is a flick that is from Foreign/Sub Title category and I need to see it let me know. I am open! Movies for me are like a fun pastime and I keep them in their proper perspective.  I get the biggest kick out of being put up on something I didn’t know about.  Hopefully some of you feel the same? So here is something me and my sister talk about often…”Sleepers”. Sleepers are movies that were good but never really got the press or buzz they should have. New or old, it doesn’t matter!


This movie totally surpassed my expectations when I first saw it. Main characters are Mark Wahlberg and Reese Whiterspoon. Mark is a psycho boyfriend and terrorizes Reese and her family. You can get this on blu-ray for $12.99.





A nice sleeper flick. Its mostly about a scam being ran by Baldwin and Kidman but has a side story about a killer on a college campus. It is not yet available on blu-ray.  You can cop it on dvd for under $10. I recently saw it and it has aged well. It’s one worth adding to your collection.


“Pacific Heights”;

This is a favorite of mine from 1990. A lot of folks know this one but it surprises me how many people don’t.  I didn’t see this one at the movies, but just shortly after it went to video.  It caught me off guard because I didn’t know anything about it. My dad rented a few movies the day before and it was sitting on top of our VHS player. I read the title, popped it in and pushed play. It was definitely a pleasant surprise. The main characters Melanie Griffin and Matthew Modine purchase a home in the exclusive Pacific Heights neighborhood in San Francisco. They rehab the place and look to get renters but pick the wrong person. If you can check it out.


It is from 1990 so I suggest you see it on Blu Ray for the highest resolution possible.


This one came out in 2002 and I didn’t know anything about it. As a matter of fact I never saw any trailers or commercials for it. If I remember correctly I saw it in a clearance bin for $10.00. I read the cover, saw it had Bill Paxton and Matthew McConaughey and picked it up. This is a fictional story and the subject matter is controversial.  This is not for kids and not for the faint of heart. It is a good suspense thriller and is another sleeper.


The movie was released in 2002 but I would still suggest seeing it on Blu Ray if possible.




“The Hitcher”.

I know people are familiar with the latest remake but the original is the one. The main character C. Thomas Howell picks up a hitch hiker and his life will never be the same. It was panned by Roger Ebert as one of the worst movies of the year!  I however thought it was a really good suspense thriller. I say judge for yourself?  Keep in mind it came out in 1986, they have yet to release a Blu-Ray or a Remastered DVD version. So the picture quality in some scenes is not the best but other than that it should keep you on the edge of your seat!




“Frozen” a newly found sleeper


I just ran up on this one on Black Friday. I was at a “Video Stop” in VA and saw it on blu-ray for sale at $7.50. Critics gave it some solid reviews so I picked it up. Me and my son just watched it this weekend. It was definitely worth the money. Cool thing is its only about 1 hour and 15 minutes! It works because they don’t try to make a short story into a 2 hour flick.  A lot more movies could work if they would just trim the fat…just saying. Basically two friends with one of their girlfriends snake their way onto a sky lift and get stranded. Now they have to survive the harsh weather. I know similar stories have been done. I have just never seen it on the ski slopes.