Movies that make drinking look good. Movies that don’t.

First of all, a tip of the cap to the masters of playing sober while drunk: Burton, Hopkins, O’Toole, Reed, and Taylor.

Drinking is fun, and funny

Arthur (1981) – No happy drunks in the remake. We’re a sober generation.

Road House (1989) – Drinkin and fightin.

My Favorite Year (1982) – O’Toole keeling over in the bathroom, that was funny.

Animal House (1978) – John Belushi, R.I.P. See, that’s what happens to happy drunks, even if it was a speedball that actually killed him.

Strange Brew (1983) – Doodle ee oop ee doodle de doo (if I remember the McKenzie brother’s theme song correctly).

Hooper (1978) – I’m thinking of the scene in which stunt man Reynolds and his buddies are driving backwards down the coast highway at high speed and come up next to a Highway Patrol car.

Drink Coke

Thieves Like Us (1974) – If you like to drink Coke out of a 6-ounce bottle on a hot day in the South, this is the movie for you.

Drinking turns you into a drama queen, or a corpse (movies that make drinkers want to drink)

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) – Brick, honey, put down that bottle and come to bed.

Who’s Afraid of Virgina Woolfe (1966) – Drunks playing drunks.

Long Day’s Journey into Night (1962) – Compare and contrast alcohol addiction, drug addiction, money addiction, and TB.

The Lost Weekend (1945) – He hides his bottle up in the light fixture and hangs it out the window on a rope. The movie influenced thousands of drinkers. Look at any picture of an apartment house taken in the 1940s and you’ll see bottles hanging out of windows on ropes.

Leaving Las Vegas (1995) – I like Cage better sober yet crazy.

Under the Volcano (1984) – A day in the life (the last one). Read Lowry’s book, one of the great novels of the 20th century.

What are your favorite topics to write about? Do you get to write about them very much in your work?

As a creative screenwriter, I’d like to answer these questions by coming up with some oh-so-clever, East-Coast-Elite, nuanced topics, but given the seriousness of the subject, I’ve got to shoot straight.

Novices: Always write about subjects that you like, not about subjects that you hate. Writing about subjects that you hate will make your work a lot more interesting and will make you more money, but what will it do to your soul?

My favorite topics:

1. Jesus – Jesus wants us to write about Him. WWJD? He’d start His own blog! Plus, there are a lot of pictures of Him around, so folks don’t have to imagine what He looks like. And because He’s all about the Bible, you can make up stories about Him any way you like.

2. God – God is harder to write about than Jesus. Sure, He loves me, but my great-aunt Agnes loved me and that didn’t stop her from thwacking me on the head with her darning egg every day that she raised me.

3. Satan – According to Drive Angry, he’s an old guy who serves as the warden of a prison. He’s quiet and well-read. You can see Harvey Keitel do him in “Little Nicky.”

4. The Pope – 1.147 billion Catholics. That’s a lot of seats in the seats. Plus, if you write your script right, you can get some anti-Catholics to watch as well.

5. That guy who predicts which day the world will end on – Every time he names a date, I write another script. He’s getting old. I just pray he can hang on for a few more.

Most of my work on these topics is vectored at training films paid for by the Go to Heaven or just Go to Hell Church on Hollywood Blvd.

Five Favorite TV Shows 2011

I don’t have a television set that is hooked up to anything and don’t use streaming much, so anything that I know about TV shows comes from seasons boxed on DVD.

Ruling out all the canceled and concluded shows and miniseries that I’ve liked, my current favorites:

Top 5

5. Sons of Anarchy

4. Breaking Bad

3. Curb Your Enthusiasm

2. Big Love – I haven’t seen the final season. I’ll be sad to see it go.

1. In Treatment

Five more, some of which could be in my top five

5. Entourage

4. Fringe – Always entertaining but frustrating because the through story is so slow to emerge.

3. Spartacus: Blood and Sand – Poor Spartacus got sick. Hope the show comes back.

2. Community- So far I’ve only seen Season 1.

1. I’m probably forgetting one.

Honorable mention

True Blood – Liked Season 1. Started Season 2 but bailed.

Haven’t seen



Boardwalk Empire


Modern Family, Parks and Recreation, The Killing, The Walking Dead, Nurse Jackie, etc., etc.,…

Haven’t engaged me


30 Rock

The Office

All animation

Bored to Death – Almost. If it had more through story.