4 out of 5
Created by: Brian Volk-Weiss
The companion series to The Toys That Made Us, The Movies… follows pretty much the exact same template of following notable creations (nostalgia-wise, we’re again zeroing on the 80s, though Home Alone pushes it as a 1990 release) from their initial seed of an idea to an eventual triumph and the ensuing legacy, though obviously transplanting the focus from toys to films. And as such, the tone changes a tad: toys are an item; movies are populated by people. Even though fans of a toy will know its creators, I think it’s much more commonplace to associate actors and directors with a movie, and so the series has to juggle exploring the lives of the various people involved as well as the production problems that inevitably plagued things that were often risky ventures, but landed as blockbusters. Thanks to the witty writing and editing and narrating, also carried over from Toys, that juggling is generally well handled, but the “and here’s where we are today…” bits often have a taint of both indulgence and sadness to them, like we know we need to address that so-and-so has passed away, but we sort of want to maintain our cheeky tone at the same time… Again, it’s handled well, I’d just say the subject matter could’ve easily extended beyond the 40 minute episode runtime, although some of the toy histories covered demanded the same as well.
Regardless, it’s a fair bet that if you like Toys you’ll like Movies, and just as with that series, even if there’s something here that you’ve obsessed over – Die Hard, for me – it’s a kick to see it drooled over outside of DVD / bluray extras.