Schubert. On Film.

“Pink Slip For A Porscha” – A Tribute To Corey Haim

Posted in Corey Haim, Tributes by schubertonfilm on March 22, 2010

To most he was a joke. He was usually referred to as a dumb child actor who got into drugs and became a target for mean jokes and cruel treatment. To me, Corey Haim was not a joke at all. Sure, everything after The Dream Machine is terrible and not worth watching. But for those few good years, Corey Haim made some great throwaway classics. I grew up on Lucas, The Lost Boys, License to Drive and The Dream Machine. I lived my teenage years vicariously through him. While other teens my age were listening to Korn, I was imagining I was Les Anderson taking Heather Graham out in my Grandpa’s Caddy. While people I knew were doing drugs, bottoming out in the depths of the suburbs, I was doing drugs and watching The Dream Machine; imagining that, for just one day, I could magically transport myself back in time, to the only place a boy like me could be happy: the Golden Age of the Teenage Movie. I could hang out with Corey Feldman. Be Jason Patric’s gay kid brother. Or maybe vie for the affections of Kerri Green with Charlie Sheen. He was one of my idols. And now he’s dead.

When I got the early morning text messages informing me of his demise, I didn’t know what to say. I kind of expected it,  I  guess. We all knew Feldman was going to make it out alive. But Haim was in too bad of shape; anyone who attempted to watch The Two Coreys knew that. Hearing about the final moments of his death – his mom seeing him stumble around the bedroom until finally crashing onto the ground – gave me the chills and haunts me to this day. He was only 38 years old but so many years of prescription drug abuse can take its toll. And now people tweet and blog “R.I.P. Corey Haim” like they give a shit. These people didn’t give a shit when he was alive. He was a joke to them; “That kid from ‘The Lost Boys’ who did drugs, right?” Well fuck you. He was a legend to me.

The one thing that bothers me the most is that people think he was always as stupid as he was when he was a full-grown adult. I’ll admit: past 21, he probably became pretty stupid, to the point he was at when he died; unable to act in character and coming off as a meth-addict. But when he was young, before he lost his mind, he was smart, really smart. As “Lucas”, he wasn’t playing himself. He was playing “Lucas” and he was a goddamn revelation in the part. Nobody could have played that part like Haim and he was only 14 years old. In The Lost Boys, he was a comedic genius; my favorite part in the movie. Everyone talks about the Frog Brothers. What about metrosexual Sam? The only kid in all of Santa Carla with the homosexual Rob Lowe poster on his wall? He’s a walking, talking 80’s icon. His Grandpa doesn’t have television; he wants his MTV, goddamnit! His timing is impeccable and he’s undisputedly the heart of the whole movie. He successfully off-sets Kiefer Sutherland and Jason Patric’s dark vampire characterizations with a lively and fun comedic performance. He owned the role.

His last “good” film (and by “good” I mean absolutely awful but a fucking great time at the movies) was The Dream Machine. I grew up with it and I love it. It’s fantastic and I can watch it anytime because Corey Haim is so fun and wacky. He’s a college student in this one; he’s growin’ up. There is no worse plot for a movie than The Dream Machine’s and no worse 1991 music than the soundtrack it contains, but Haim’s got charisma, something young stars like Robert Pattinson or Taylor Lautner will never have. Before you say it, allow me: No, I’m not gay and I’m not sexually attracted to Haim. I just like him. Like a buddy likes another buddy. Okay? Is that good enough for you?

If you re-watch any of these films mentioned, you’ll see exactly what I mean. He wasn’t stupid nor was he a bad actor. On the contrary, he was a very good actor and a brilliant young kid and it makes me sick for people to think of him as anything else. Sure, a selective memory helps, perhaps one that doesn’t go past 1991. But you know what? At some point everyone stops being cool, and it just so happens we got a cool Corey Haim until he was 21. Good enough for me.

I met him 2007. He signed my VHS and he was a real nice fellow!

P.S. – To those who follow, I apologize for the month of non-posting. I am now back in action.


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