March is usually when movies start picking up steam as the studios get ready for the summer months. Unfortunately, March 1997 doesn’t help create interest, the month is full of mediocre movies.
A handful of bad comedies and some action flicks. The best movie of the month is almost twenty years old.
There is one movie I enjoyed and is a bit of a sleeper hit.
Let’s look at the movies released in March 1997.
Movies from February 1997
Jungle 2 Jungle
Tim Allen was a big star in the late 90s. He was the star of Home Improvement and the voice of Buzz Lightyear in the mega-popular Toy Story movie.
Tim Allen shouldn’t be in Jungle 2 Jungle, neither should Martin Short. Both are better comedic actors than this movie would have you believe.
I took my young son to see this movie. He didn’t seem to impressed. He was more interested in the candy and popcorn than the movie.
Jungle 2 Jungle was a moderate box office success, how I don’t know but it was. It was blasted by critics and audiences alike.
Gene Siskel called it the worst movie of 1997.
You can watch Jungle 2 Jungle on Disney+. I don’t advise it.
I’ve never been a Howard Stern fan and I’ve never listened to his radio show. The movie Private Parts is a biographical movie about Stern’s rise to radio superstar.
I rented this one in the fall of 1997. Well, actually my neighbor across the hall rented it. He was a huge Howard Stern fan. He gave it to me one night and said I had to watch it, so I did.
It’s a good movie.
Stern’s story is good. He’s a bit of a dork who created a larger-than-life shock jock persona to make it in the radio business. I thought some of the best parts of the movie are when Stern is off the air, being a regular person trying to win the love of his girlfriend.
The movie didn’t turn me into a Howard Stern fan but it’s an enjoyable film about his early life.
My biggest takeaway from the movie is anytime I see Paul Giamatti I say ‘Hey, it’s Pig Vomit!”
You can watch Private Parts on HBO Max.
Return of the Jedi Special Edition
The best movie released in March 1997 was a twenty year old re-release, Return of the Jedi.
Like the previous two films in the original trilogy, Return of the Jedi received good and bad updates. The best update for all three movies was the sound, all getting remastered to modern (1997) standards.
The visual effects were hit and miss. Most of them were used as a test of CGI capabilities for the upcoming prequels.
The scene in Jabba’s Palace was extended showing more of the rancor pit and the Max Rebo band. The band and song are dumb. They could and should have left it out. It adds nothing to the movie. The ending victory celebration was good though. Instead of the Endor Ewok celebration it shows other planets celebrating too like Bespin and Tatooine.
I saw this a few times in the theater in March and April 1997. It was almost twenty years since I first saw it as a youngster in a sold out theater. I didn’t know if it would ever be in a theater again.
I was a huge Star Wars fan until the universe was expanded to infinity. At one point I could tell you about all the ships, planets and characters. There has now been so much removed from canon I have no idea what the universe looks like. I haven’t watched all the cartoons or read the comics to keep up.
Regardless of all the changes and Disney putting their childish spin on new shows, I will always and forever love the original trilogy. The joy and wonderment of seeing them in the movie theater as a child will never fad away.
You can watch Return of the Jedi on Disney+.
Jim Carrey is a great comedic actor. However, for me, I need him in small doses. I liked all his skits on In Living Color. Fire Marshall Bill is probably the most popular, but Vera de Milo and his karate instructor character are both great.
Most movies starring Jim Carrey have too much Jim Carrey comedy and in them for my tastes. Liar, Liar is an exception. It’s a nice balance between his comedy and regular acting.
It’s a funny movie. It’s one of the few Carrey movies I saw in the theater. Usually I’d rent them or catch them on TV.
The premise is funny, Carrey plays a lawyer who can no longer lie. He tells the truth in a circumstances leading to some funny moments in the movie. The elevator scene, the bedroom scene and the bathroom scene are all comedy gold.
If your a Jim Carrey fan, you’ll like this movie.
You can watch Liar, Liar on Amazon Prime Video.
I had a friend in 90s who was a big Selena fan. He was devastated when she died.
I didn’t see this in the theater. I rented it in late 1997. It’s a good movie with a tragic ending.
Selena is a biographical movie about the life of music star Selena Quintanilla-Pérez played by Jennifer Lopez.
Lopez does a great job in the starring role. This wasn’t her first movie and she even appeared in four movies in 1997. But her role in Selena is easily her breakout role.
Selena is worth watching. I don’t think it gets as much praise as it should. It ranks up there with other films in the genre like, La Bamba, Walk the Line, The Buddy Holly Story or The Doors.
You can watch Selena on HBO Max.
The Devil’s Own
The Devil’s Own is my sleeper hit of the month.
Starring Harrison Ford as NYPD detective O’Meara who welcomes in Rory, played by Bradd Pitt, a Irish immigrant. What O’Meara doesn’t know is Rory is actually Frankie, an Irish Republican Army (IRA) soldier trying to buy weapons for the IRA.
In college I did a ‘study aboard’ program in Northern Ireland which focused on “The Troubles,” the conflict between the IRA and the Loyalists. It was fascinating.
Even in a country as seemingly benign as Ireland there were rules to follow. What colors to wear, or more importantly not to wear, who to speak to and how to order things. Never, ever order a Black and Tan in an Irish pub, its a Half and Half.
The Devil’s Own does a good job of capturing the conflict and how it impacts and divides the Irish, even in America. It’s a good action thriller that will keep you entertained.
If you’re a fan of Ford or Pitt you’ll enjoy The Devil’s Own.
You can watch The Devil’s Own on Starz.
Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie
Power Rangers are a guilty pleasure of mine. I’ve loved them since I first saw them.
I took my son to this movie too. He loved it!
Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie is the sequel to 1995’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie. All of which are based on a Japanese property called Super Sentai. The Japanese create some of the best shows!
Turbo wasn’t as good as the original movie but it’s still enjoyable. It didn’t do well at the box office and was blasted by most critics.
I still watch Power Rangers today. I’ll never apologize for liking them. It’s Morphin Time!
You can watch Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie on Tubi TV.
Other movies released in March 1997
Here’s the rest of the movies released in March 1997. There’s really nothing on this list that looks good. I doubt I’ll ever watch them.
That concludes our look at the movies of March 1997. The Devil’s Own and Selena are worth watching. So are the Power Rangers, if that’s your thing.
There are better movies coming up April 1997 but the year doesn’t get going until May. The summer months are a flurry of blockbusters, stay tuned!
What are your favorites from March 1997?
Let us know in the comments below. Or tag us on Twitter. The main channel is @TRNSocial and I’m @MileHighSamurai
Next week we’ll look at April 1982.
Until then the balcony is closed.
Check out the previous installments of
1982 Friday Flix | 1987 Friday Flix | 1992 Friday Flix | 1997 Friday Flix
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