There’s something fantastic about being in on a joke. Something that just feels fantastic, when you and a few other folks crack a chuckle, while other folks around you ask what’s so damn funny. Movies have been doing this for decades now. Here’s ten rather memorable in-jokes.
Spider-Man 2 – Doc Ock’s amputation gets groovy
Back before Sam Raimi was known for Spider-Man films and making eating disorder demon films in Drag me to hell, he carved a name for himself with the Evil Dead films. Brutal, sadistic and shot on a low budget, those flicks became cult classics. Raimi moved on though, directing other genres and wound up eventually making the first Spider-Man trilogy of movies. The first film had a tiny reference to his Evil Dead work, but in the second, he went all out with one particular scene.
Doctor Otto Octavious has managed to screw up some science, fusing prosthetic mechanical arms to his body that need to be amputated, stat. And in an operating room filled with sharp instruments, Raimi unleashes an Evil Dead tribute with those tools, arms and poor hospital staff. Raimi himself joked about how he could have shot another Evil Dead film woth a budget equal to the amount of cash used in that scene. I kinda wihs he had, but at least we got that other Evil Dead film a decade later.
Indiana Jones and the temple of doom – Club Obi-Wan
Steven Spielberg and George Lucas are big chums, y’know. The duo have pretty much left a mark on Hollywood, between all their films and fleecing the coins ot of fans with moichendisin’. Which is why I’m still waiting for George Lucas to release a Club Obi Wan playset that includes Asian gangsters, poison and flaming food orders being mixed up with chest cavities. Make it so fellas.
Wayne’s World – Have you seen this boy?
No one likes traffic cops. Sorry to those of you reading this who happen to have such a career, but it’sa fact of life that we all hate you. But seeing a traffic cop resembling a certain future robot ninja death machine made out of liquid metal? Now that’s night mare fuel.
Scream – That janitor looks a little bit familiar…
Good ol’ Wes Craven. He’s the reason why I take bottles of pills in order to not dream, or remember his horror films, as Freddy Krueger is one hell of a dream demon. But seeing Craven dressed up like Krueger, wandering the halls like a Scottish janitor towards a pile of puke outside class room 4C. Infinitely scarier.
Captain America – The Human Torch legacy
One thing that Marvel got right with the films that they still own the rights to, is to get everything connected. They’ve even gone and nabbed the Human Torch to play Captain America,a move which left diehard fanboys choking on their bile. But Johnny Storm wasn;t the first Human Torch, as an android version popped up back in the heyday of World War Ii to lend the allies a hand. It’s a subtle dig at both the history of Marvel comics and Evan’s film career, but I dig it.
X-Men: First Class – Wolverine ain’t got no class
Charles Xavier and Erik “Magneto” Lensherr, the best of buddies. Long before they let a few bullets and radically different ideologies come between them, the two mutants were on a mission to recruit the best and brightest superhumans to help them save the world. And Wolverine. To which Hugh Jackman gave them a trademark reason to get out of his face.
Wolverine, he’s the best there is and what he does. And what he does best is be pretty blunt.
Terminator 2 – Guns ‘n Roses
Hey look, another Terminator refernence! The first time we get to see Arnie tussle with the superior T-1000 Terminator, it;s when he brings it flowers. Because violets are blue, roses are red, nothing says love like a face full of lead. Arnie happens to have a shotgun hidden in that box of reference, in a film where John Connor has some excellent taste in music. It’s guns and roses people. I’m referencing Guns ‘n Roses here, which Arnie pays tribute to in that scene.
Casper the friendly ghost – Who ya gonna call?
Ghosts. They’re pesky, drive real estate value down and leave gross ectoplasm everywhere. What you need to get rid of them, is a licensed paranormal exterminator that happens to have an unlicensed nuclear accelerator on his back. But for a specific trio of ghosts in the Casper the friendly ghost film, who ya gonna call? Someone else!
Hot Shots Part Deux – I loved you in Wall Street!
It’s sometimes eery just how similar Martin Sheen and his son Charlie happen to be at times. Minus the tiger blood of course. Heck, they’ve even popped up in movies with one another from time to time. But seeing them break the fourth wall and loudly exclaim their love for their roles in Wall Street? Priceless.
Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace – Senator ET
There are plenty of races represented in the galactic senate. Including some rather familiar set of extra terrestrials, if you squint hard enough below the Wookie delegates. I can only hope that Senator Palpatine took care of them, after he finished gutting representative Binks.
Last Action Hero
What makes Last Action Hero so damn memorable, is that the entire film is one big massive end-joke. Cops dying before they can retire, bad puns, reality and fantasy colliding and what if scenarios in which Arnie never managed to star in certain films…There are just way too many to list here. Which is why watching this film over and over again is always worth it.
Last Updated: August 8, 2013