Cult Film Club Episode 13: Tribute to Harold Ramis

Hello all, Shawn, Pax and Jaime are back for the new season of the Cult Film Club!  We had a blast recording the first twelve installments, and we’re ready to start up the super-secret meetings of the CFC once again.

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While we have an awesome slate of movies lined up to talk about on the show, we wanted to kick off this second season by paying tribute to a true icon of cinema, Mr. Harold Ramis, who passed away from complications due to vasculitis at the age of 69.  From his beginnings at National Lampoon and Second City, Ramis would become sort of an unsung hero of comedy who was always in the shadow of his much more high profile collaborators (including John Candy, Bill Murray, John Hughes, Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield and Dan Aykroyd.)  Sure, most people know him as Egon Spengler from the Ghostbusters, but how many people realize he directed National Lampoon’s Vacation or Caddyshack?  As an actor Ramis took the role of the straight man and twisted it to a degree where he managed to wring more laughs out of rolling his eyes and shaking his head than most comics get out of writing reams of material.  As a writer he brought us both heartwarming and bombastic comedies like Meatballs and Animal House respectively.  As a director he helmed a handful of classic films, two of which are listed in the AFI’s Top 100 Comedies of the last century.

Harold Ramis had a huge impact on all of us, and we decided to sit down and have a conversation about three of the films that really stand out for us as hosts, as well as sort of sampling a variety of his work from different eras of his career.  With his first major acting role in Stripes, Ramis held his own against frequent collaborator Bill Murray while also penning one of the most memorable satires of the military on film.  A tribute to Ramis wouldn’t be complete without paying homage to his turn as Egon, the Ghostbusters who not only collects spores, molds, and fungi, but makes one mean Twinkie simile.  Finally we spend some time in a karmic loop discussing quite possibly Ramis’ masterwork, Groundhog Day.

So sit back, pour yourself a tall glass of Hi-C Ecto Cooler, watch some Harold Ramis flicks and join us as we toast Mr. Harold Ramis.

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