Theme Times – The Brat Packer’s #6

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Brat Packers by association only: C.Thomas Howell, Ralph Macchio, James Spader and Charlie Sheen


C.Thomas Howell By Peabody Awards


Ralph Macchio By Supercon Conventions


James Spader By Gage Skidmore


Charlie Sheen By Angela George

C.Thomas Howell

Christopher Thomas Howell (born December 7, 1966) is an American actor and director. He has starred in the films Soul Man, The Hitcher, Grandview U.S.A., Red Dawn, Secret Admirer and The Outsiders. He has also appeared in Gettysburg as Thomas Chamberlain, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, The Amazing Spider-Man, Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox and Suicide Squad: Hell to Pay.

Best Known Film

Ralph Macchio

Ralph George Macchio Jr. born November 4, 1961) is an American actor known for his role as Daniel LaRusso in three Karate Kid films and Cobra Kai, a sequel television series. He is also known for his roles as Johnny Cade in The Outsiders, Jeremy Andretti in Eight Is Enough, Bill Gambini in My Cousin Vinny, Eugene Martone in Crossroads, and Archie Rodriguez in Ugly Betty.

Best Known Film

James Spader

James Todd Spader (born February 7, 1960) is an American actor. He is best known for portraying eccentric characters in films such as the drama Sex, Lies, and Videotape (1989), the action science fiction film Stargate (1994), the controversial psychological thriller Crash (1996), and the erotic romance Secretary (2002). In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he played the titular character of Ultron in Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), which he portrayed through voice and motion capture.

His best-known television roles are those of attorney Alan Shore in The Practice and its spin-off Boston Legal (for which he won three Emmy Awards), and Robert California in the comedy-mockumentary The Office. He currently stars as high-profile criminal-turned-FBI-informant Raymond “Red” Reddington in the NBC crime drama The Blacklist, for which he has earned two Golden Globe Award nominations.

Best Known Film

Charlie Sheen

Carlos Irwin Estévez (born September 3, 1965), known professionally as Charlie Sheen, is an American actor. Sheen has appeared in films including Platoon (1986), Wall Street (1987), Young Guns (1988), Eight Men Out (1988), Major League (1989), Hot Shots! (1991), and The Three Musketeers (1993).

In the 2000s, when Sheen replaced Michael J. Fox in Spin City, his performance earned him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy. He then starred in Two and a Half Men which earned him several Golden Globe and Emmy Award nominations. He most recently starred in the FX comedy series Anger Management, which concluded its 100-episode run in 2014. In 2010, Sheen was the highest paid actor on television and earned US$1.8 million per episode of Two and a Half Men.

Best Known Film


Following on from Theme Times – The Brat Packers!! Here is our sixth feature episode of’by association only’ Brat Packers.

Admittedly of the four actors here, whilst l am familiar with most of their performances since the 80’s these are a very mixed genre covering group of actors. I am a huge fan of Spader, with Howell and  Sheen next and l know very little really of Macchio post Karate Kid fame. However, here is a collective of 20 films – 5 a piece of their better works in my opinion – but how about you, are you fans?


C.Thomas Howell

1 – The Hitcher – 1986

While transporting a car from Chicago to San Diego, Jim Halsey (C. Thomas Howell) picks up a hitchhiker named John Ryder (Rutger Hauer), who claims to be a serial killer. After a daring escape, Jim hopes to never see Ryder again. But when he witnesses the hitchhiker murdering an entire family, Jim pursues Ryder with the help of truck-stop waitress Nash (Jennifer Jason Leigh), pitting the rivals against each other in a deadly series of car chases and brutal murders.

2 – Red Dawn – 1984

When Soviet and Cuban paratroopers invade Colorado, a group of teenagers flee to the mountains. Left with nowhere to run, they engage in guerilla warfare with the invading forces.

3 – Secret Admirer – 1985

A 16-year-old high school student receives an unsigned love letter, which causes a chain of confusion. It continues to fall into the wrong hands, and each recipient believes it was meant for them.

4 – Gettysburg – 1993

This war drama depicts one of the biggest events of the American Civil War, the Battle of Gettysburg. The massive three-day conflict begins as Confederate General Robert E. Lee (Martin Sheen) presses his troops north into Pennsylvania, leading to confrontations with Union forces, including the regiment of Colonel Joshua Chamberlain (Jeff Daniels). As the battle rages on and casualties mount, the film follows both the front lines and the strategic maneuvering behind the scenes.

5 – Soul Man – 1986

To fund his education at Harvard, a teen tints his skin to pose as a young black man and receive a scholarship. But then he realises that being black will cause some people to treat him differently.

Ralph Macchio

1 – Karate Kid – 1984

Daniel moves to a new town where he is harassed by boys adept in karate. He decides to learn karate. When Mr Miyagi starts his training, he learns that there is more to the art form than fighting.

2 -The Karate Kid Part II – 1986

After learning about his dying father, Mr Miyagi sets off to see him with Daniel. Upon reaching there, he decides to confront an old rival; meanwhile, Daniel inadvertently makes an enemy of his own.

3 – Crossroads – 1986

A guitar student (Ralph Macchio) tours the Deep South with an old blues man (Joe Seneca), chasing a lost song written by Robert Johnson.

4 – My Cousin Vinny – 1992

Vinny, an inexperienced lawyer, steps in to defend his cousin Billy and his friend Stan in his first ever trial after they are accused of murdering a convenience store owner.

5 – Wax On, F*ck Off with Ralph Macchio – 2010

James Spader

1 – Secretary – 2002

Lee Holloway (Maggie Gyllenhaal), a young woman with a history of severe emotional problems, is released into the care of her overbearing parents following a stay at a mental institution. She finds work as a secretary for a rigid and demanding attorney, E. Edward Grey (James Spader), and starts dating the kind but dull Peter (Jeremy Davies). However, Lee soon realizes she’s turned on by Grey’s stern demeanor, and begins a sadomasochistic relationship with him.

2 – Stargate – 1994

In modern-day Egypt, professor Daniel Jackson (James Spader) teams up with retired Army Col. Jack O’Neil (Kurt Russell) to unlock the code of an interstellar gateway to an ancient Egypt-like world. They arrive on a planet ruled by the despotic Ra (Jaye Davidson), who holds the key to the Earth travelers’ safe return. Now, in order to escape from their intergalactic purgatory, Jackson and O’Neil must convince the planet’s people that Ra must be overthrown.

3 – Sex, Lies, and Videotape – 1989

John is having an affair with his wife’s sister Cynthia. His wife claims that she doesn’t need sex anymore. However, the arrival of an old friend changes everything.

4 – Avengers: Age of Ultron – 2015

Tony Stark builds an artificial intelligence system named Ultron with the help of Bruce Banner. When the sentient Ultron makes plans to wipe out the human race, the Avengers set out to stop him.

5 – Crash – 1996

“Crash” is about the strange lure of the auto collision, provoking as it does the human fascination with death and the tendency to eroticize danger. Most motorists will slow down to stare at the scene of a collision; they may feel their pulses quickening and become aware of the fragility of their own bodies. The characters of “Crash” carry this awareness a step further, cherishing and nurturing it. For them, a car collision is a sexual turn-on, and a jolting life force they come to crave.

Charlie Sheen

1 – Hot Shots! – 1991

Harley, a psychologically imbalanced fighter pilot, is entrusted the responsibility of destroying Saddam Hussein’s nuclear plants while competing against a rival pilot.

2 – Major League – 1989

The new owner of a sports team deliberately makes them lose in order to move them to Miami. However, when her evil intentions are uncovered, the players try to win every game just to spite her.

3 – Wall Street – 1987

Bud, a junior stockbroker, wants to work with Gordon Gekko, his idol, and tries to impress him by spying on renowned companies. But when Bud learns about Gordon’s evil antics, he tries to destroy him.

4 – Men at Work – 1990

Two garbage men’s lives are turned upside down when they discover a dead body in a trash bin. They frantically try to keep it hidden, elude underworld goons, and find the real killer.

5 – Rated X – 2000

When film student Jim Mitchell (Emilio Estevez) is scolded for making films that dwell too much on female anatomy, he doesn’t take the hint, but instead starts making pornographic films professionally. He ropes in his younger brother, Artie (Charlie Sheen), and together they open a very successful studio. Amid constant partying and mountains of cocaine, they manage to make one of the most successful porn films of all time before their personal demons get the better of them.

So there we go folks – were these favourites of yours and or are they still?

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5 thoughts on “Theme Times – The Brat Packer’s #6

  1. Spader is an excellent actor. Love him! Sex, Lies probably my fave. Macchio was awesome in My Cousin Vinny. Never a huge fan of Sheen. Forgot the other one already. If I leave this box, I lose my comment 😂

    1. Hey Paula, behind you 100% there. Spader of the four is my best followed, l like the ‘edge’ he delivers in his performances and of the four he is probably the most prolific – Howell, l have always found quirky and l like quirky actors , Sheen not the biggest fan of, bar a few films and as for Macchio post KKid, l agree with you on Vinny, excellent film – but he is not as active as he once was.

  2. Meh… I haven’t seen most of these movies. I forgot Spader was in Stargate. Sheen is okay… 🤷🏼‍♀️

    My favorite by association hasn’t been featured yet… John Cusack

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