Jumpin’ Jack Flash (1986)

This is Penny Marshall’s directorial debut. She replaced Howard Zieff, the director of the two My Girl movies, and the script — originally intended for Shelley Long when people actually thought she’d be likable enough to open a movie — was rewritten as the movie was shot. You know how Hollywood works. If you can’t get Shelley Long, get Whoopi Goldberg.

Whoopi is Terry Doolittle, a computer operator at a Manhattan bank surrounded by really funny people like Carol Kane, Jon Lovitz and Phil Hartman. You also get minor parts for Tracy Ullman, Annie Potts, Jim Belushi and Michael McKean.

The story itself is a Cold War spy movie that has computers do things that they could not do in 1986. There are also more Rolling Stones references than just the title, if you’re looking for a movie with those kinds of things.

Is it sad that I know that Jonathan Pryce, who plays Jack, was also the President in two G.I. Joe movies?

Somehow, in the midst of quarantine, I was subjected to two Penny Marshall movies. This means that I have the horrifying Awakenings and Riding In Cars with Boys before COVID-19 is done.

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