Treasure Planet — and more specifically, the massive financial failure of Treasure Planet — has been widely cited as traditional animation’s death knell. That undeniable fact covers up the wonderful movie behind it, and while it has developed a cult following over the years, this amazing space-opera update of the Robert Louis Stevenson classic deserves a much wider audience. It opened today in 2002.
The Rocky franchise saw its share of ups and downs, but as cultural artifacts go, they don’t get much weirder than Rocky IV: a ripe slice of Reagan’s America which pitted the titular boxer (Sylvester Stallone) aganinst an engineered ubermensch from behind the Iron Curtain. Today, it’s almost laughably jingoistic — to the point of being a kitsch classic — but Stallone gives it his all as always and Swedish actor Dolph Lundgren made a real impression as his Soviet nemesis. It opened today in 1985.
November is apparently Elvis month, and today saw the release of one of his better efforts. It’s Fun in Acapulco, positing the King as a lifeguard in the titular city trying to overcome his fear of heights in order to become a successful cliff diver… or something. In any case, the songs are delightful, Presley is in his element, and Ursula Andress is along for the ride too. The movie opened today in 1963.