There’s plenty of self-storage in movies and television (see “Breaking Bad,” “Arrested Development” and the slew of horror movies made in recent years set at storage facilities). There are also a lot of movies about moving that don’t mention self-storage once. What gives, filmmakers of the world?
We at SpareFoot wondered why self-storage was so cruelly ignored in some of the most celebrated movies about moving and houses. Why omit such an important part of the moving process? Then it dawned on us—self-storage would completely alter the plots of certain movies if their screenwriters had incorporated it into the original script.
Still, this realization didn’t quench our thirst for what could have been? That’s why SpareFoot’s social media viking Matt “Antwaan” Stites and I sat down and rewrote the plot of the following movies, imagining if the characters had used self-storage instead. Call it madness, passion for storage or straight-up delusional fan fiction. Brace yourselves, lads. You’ll never underestimate the power of storage again.
“Home Alone”: A Sobering Tale of One Man’s Failure
Peter McAllister enters his basement with the sudden realization that his house is chock-full of extremely dangerous materials.
“This stuff could be living heck for even two grown men!” he says aloud, examining a precariously constructed shelf stocked with paint cans. “These are completely full—what were we even using them for?”
Peter gasps, startled to discover his wife’s old mannequins in the corner. “Why, if these were placed in the living room window,” says Peter, lifting a cardboard cutout of Michael Jordan from the cement floor, “someone might mistake them for us—if the lighting were right!”
He chuckles at the thought of his neighbors coming to the door with an offer of holiday wishes or baked goods, only to find that the silhouette in the window belongs to a two-dimensional basketball star. He brushes his hands decisively.
“No, no. This all MUST go before the family arrives.”
Just before Christmas, the blustering McAllister clan hop into their airport taxis and leave tiny, complacent Kevin to his own devices in the attic bedroom on a bed that’s way too large to realistically fit in an attic. With all implements of counter-burglary packed into a nearby storage unit, Kevin realizes he is utterly defenseless and alone.
As Kevin hides under the huge attic bed, Harry and Marv enter through the front door, take absolutely everything and flood the McAllister household in true Wet Bandit fashion. Kevin’s self-image is later molded around his failure to defend his house, fulfilling a self-imposed destiny of impotence and helplessness. He enters into a handful of one-sided, abusive marriages, and eventually realizes his childhood vow to live alone and without his family.
“Jumanji”: An Aggressive Pelvic Thrust Teaches Robin Williams a Lesson
(Not To Be Confused With the Movie “Flubber”)
In 1869, two boys take a cursed board game to their local self-storage facility with specific instructions never to remove it for any reason. One hundred years later, Alan Parrish gets beaten up outside a shoe factory and never discovers Jumanji. Sam Parrish, now free to focus on the business of shoes instead of a lifelong search for his lost son, invents the first dance-friendly platform shoe. The town of Keene, NH, becomes the epicenter of Disco Fever, and Alan is Patient Zero.
Realizing Alan’s incredible star potential, Sam cancels his boarding school scholarship and instead sends his son to New York to be discovered. Alan’s tween years are a frenetic blur of bell bottoms, reflective disco balls, and heavy drug use in America’s hottest nightclubs. A beleaguered Barry Gibbs, inspired by Alan’s youthful exuberance and tireless skill on the dance floor in a Miami disco, re-tools the Bee Gees’ sound for a funkier, falsetto-loving audience. Alan joins the brothers on a global tour to promote “Children of the World.” In a smoky London nightclub, Alan meets a mysterious British dance prodigy known locally by the name “Van Pelt,” who is famous for the trademark pith helmet with which he performs the most insane head spin you’ve ever seen.
The two become instant rivals, locked in a series of alienating and self-destructive dance-offs that last well beyond (and contribute toward) the deterioration of the disco bubble. Alan’s high-flying career crashes tragically when Van Pelt’s helmet, forced ajar by an aggressive pelvic thrust, impales itself into Alan’s thigh. Alan returns to Keene with a limp and a longing for the simple pleasures of life, eventually settling down with his childhood love interest, Sarah Whittle.
Twenty-six years later, Judy and Peter’s parents still die in a car crash in Canada, I guess? I mean, Alan doesn’t know who they are without the game, so he can’t warn them not to go on a ski trip. Sorry.
“Grey Gardens”: Just Another Happy Family
A documentary film crew visits the house of Edith Ewing Bouvier Beale (“Big Edie”) and her daughter, Edith Bouvier Beale (“Little Edie”), to examine life in East Hampton, NY. The two women have a really nice house and happen to be related to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. They are extremely clean and organized. Little Edie has a unique sense of style, which, decades later, inspires now-disgraced fashion designer John Galliano. The end.
“Toy Story”: A Horror Movie About Human Nature, Starring Toys
Andy’s mom rents a self-storage unit for the move. In the rush of moving, the box containing Woody, Buzz and all of the other toys ends up in the storage unit.
After initial moments of panic, Woody calms everyone down and convinces them that Andy and his mom will come back for the toys. Rex uses his sharp teeth to cut through the packing tape, enabling the toys to escape from their box. Woody and Rex become the leaders of the stranded toys, and corral the others to build a small fortress out of Lincoln Logs. Newcomer Buzz Lightyear disagrees strongly with Woody’s pacifist ways, and picks Mr. Potato Head as his right-hand man (or potato). This is deeply ironic, since Mr. Potato Head’s right hand is removable.
Night falls. Because he is terrified of the dark and has tiny arms, Rex becomes the laughing stock of the group. After the other toys see something crawling around the unit (this is why you should always read reviews of the facility before renting, people), Buzz and Mr. Potato Head lead the Barrel of Monkeys out to hunt and destroy the “beast.”
Along the way, they find a My First Kitchen set that Andy secretly played with. The delicious spread includes plastic hamburgers and beautiful, sunny-side-up eggs. Believing that Woody is an incompetent leader, they decide to set up their own camp at My First Kitchen. Buzz and Mr. Potato use the food to lure other toys away from Woody and Rex’s group.
Meanwhile, Slinky Dog wanders around the depths of the storage unit and comes across Babyface—a baby robot head set atop a spider-like body made out of an erector set. Babyface tells Slinky Dog that the toys themselves created the “beast” and claims the real beast is inside all of them. Slinky Dog returns to tell the other toys of his discovery, but accidentally stumbles into Buzz and Mr. Potato Head’s camp instead. He is mistaken for the beast and killed in a confused frenzy.
Buzz and Mr. Potato Head ambush Woody’s camp and kidnap Rex using RC and the Bucket O’ Soldiers. Woody treks to My First Kitchen, accompanied only by Snake and Robot, to demand Rex’s release. Buzz’s tribe takes Snake and Robot hostage, while Mr. Potato Head drops the Etch-a-Sketch on Rex, killing him. Woody escapes, but Snake and Robot are tortured until they agree to join Buzz’s tribe.
The next morning, Buzz leads his tribe on a manhunt for Woody. Buzz uses the laser weapon on his forearm to burn down Woody’s Lincoln Log fortress, thus chasing him out of his only safety place. As Woody runs around the storage unit in utter hopelessness, the door rolls up to reveal Andy and his mom. The toys freeze in place.
Twenty years later, Buzz Lightyear crawls into Andy and his wife’s house and kills them with Silly String in a fit of rage over being replaced by an iPhone.