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Matinee (1993)

PG | | Comedy, Drama | 29 January 1993 (USA)
Trailer
1:53 | Trailer
A small-time film promoter releases a kitschy horror film during the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Director:

Joe Dante

Writers:

Jerico Stone (story) (as Jerico), Charles S. Haas (story) (as Charlie Haas) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Goodman ... Lawrence Woolsey
Cathy Moriarty ... Ruth Corday / Carole
Simon Fenton ... Gene Loomis
Omri Katz ... Stan
Lisa Jakub ... Sandra
Kellie Martin ... Sherry
Jesse Lee Soffer ... Dennis Loomis (as Jesse Lee)
Lucinda Jenney ... Anne Loomis
James Villemaire ... Harvey Starkweather
Robert Picardo ... Howard the Theater Manager
Jesse White ... Mr. Spector
Dick Miller ... Herb Denning
John Sayles ... Bob
David Clennon ... Jack
Lucy Butler ... Rhonda
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Storyline

A showman introduces a small coastal town to a unique movie experience and capitalises on the Cuban Missile crisis hysteria with a kitschy horror extravaganza combining film effects, stage props and actors in rubber suits in this salute to the B-movie. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Lawrence Woolsey presents the end of civilization as we know it. Make that... Proudly Presents!

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for language, and for mild violence and sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

29 January 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Matinee See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$13,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,601,015, 31 January 1993

Gross USA:

$9,532,895

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$9,532,895
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR | Dolby

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

John Sayles would later direct David Clennon in Silver City (2004), after sharing one scene in this movie. See more »

Goofs

When Sherry asks Stan if they really have a fallout shelter, Stan replies that yes it's in their basement. As most of Florida is just above sea level, and on coral limestone, basements are seen as impractical and aren't very common, though due to the maximum elevation, there are a few. See more »

Quotes

[repeated line]
Lawrence Woolsey: Hello, I'm Lawrence Woolsey.
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the credits are complete, we are treated to a quick snippet from "MANT" with the Cathy Moriarty character pining, "Oh, Bill". See more »

Connections

Featured in The Sci-Fi Boys (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Main Title
from Tarantula (1955)
Arranged and Conducted by Dick Jacobs
Courtesy of MCA Records
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Half Man ... Half Ant ... All Terror! Joe Dante's simply delicious B-movie tribute!
22 March 2009 | by CoventrySee all my reviews

This isn't such a very well known film (at least I never heard of it before I watched it) and actually that is a god-awful shame, as "Matinee" is a joyously vivid, versatile and refreshingly imaginative little comedy. "Matinee" is director Joe Dante's ultimate tribute to typically 50's Sci-Fi B-movies and massively promoted gimmick-laden low-budget flicks; particularly the repertoire of the legendary William Castle. In one of his most glorious roles to date, John Goodman depicts the unscrupulous and sleazy horror movie producer Lawrence Woolsey, who is practically the reincarnation of William Castle, what with his sly and shameless salesmanship techniques and continuous wide-mouthed smile. At the highpoint of the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, Woolsey jaunts out to Key West – where the Navy and population hectically prepares for a bomb attack – in order to proudly present his newest and supposedly most shocking motion picture named "Mant". "Mant" is a silly shock feature about a man slowly mutating into a gigantic ant after being exposed to nuclear radiation, and for the big premiere Woolsey stuffed the film theater with horrid decorations and gimmicks to raise extra fear in the audience. With the threat of actual bombing attack going on outside the theater, Woolsey bumps into a lot of protest and resistance from the adult population in Key West, but luckily the younger and horror-crazed generation are wildly enthusiast about the upcoming matinée preview. With "Matinee", the still incredibly underrated director Joe Dante delivered another delicious and charming movie. The extended bits and clips from the fictional movie "Mant" masterfully capture the essence of 1950's B-movie cinema, with grotesque ideas and effects, cheesy nonsensical dialogs and wooden acting performances. The real William Castle actually never made such a type of monster movie, but the gimmicks and promotional stunts (like buzzers underneath the seats and guys in rubber suits running around) are right up his delightful alley! But "Matinee" is a terrifically clever movie on other levels as well. Apart from a wonderful homage to horror cinema, it also contains an admirable "coming of age" sub plot and it effectively parodies the mass hysteria going on around the time of the Cold War. Whilst the adult population of Key West practices their duck & cover bomb alarms and prepare their shelters, the teenagers are more concerned about finding a date to go see "Mant" on Saturday. The acting performances are fantastic (like his monster "Mant", John Goodman himself is larger than life!), the decors and atmosphere of the early 60's are marvelously re-enacted and – in good old Joe Dante tradition – there are multiple cameos of horror veterans, like Dick Miller, Kevin McCarthy and Robert Cornthwaite. This is truly a film meant for genuine horror movie buffs, but nevertheless a stupendously enjoyable comedy for all type of audiences.


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