14 December 2009

The Final Stretch

As we are in our last month of the year, those of us who are crazies are approaching the end of our fiscal movie-watching year. What does this mean? Some of us had originally endeavored to reach 365 [piece of cake], and now the over-achievers are trying to reach 500. In order to do so, I need to watch over 50 movies in 16 days. No problem. As part of this rigorous program, I am also trying to squeeze in all the modern classics that I missed out on.

What I'm actually trying to say is that I probably need to blerg less as to watch more movies. What I'll be doing is only writing in depth about the most noteworthy movies [like The Room and Robocop].

Here are some movies I have watched:

Death Proof (2007): Full of patriarchy, yet Zoe Bell is the best thing about this movie and all movies. 3/5

Breaking the Waves (1996): Lars Von Trier is an okay director when he is not documenting torture porn and patriarchy. Emily Watson is spectacular in her first movie. 3/5

Precious (2009): A movie with black people? That'll never get popular. This movie was very upsetting and definitely worth watching. Mariah Carey is in it too! 4/5

Labyrinth (1986): I finally watched the most important movie from 1986. Jennifer Connelly + the plot ruined it, but Mr. Bowie saved it. He reminds me of a babe! 3/5

Muppet Christmas Carol (1992): Everyone's favorite rendition of the Dickens classic, Muppet Christmas Carol is also Michael Caine's second best movie! 5/5

Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol (1962): Everyone's second favorite rendition of the Dickens classic, starring a Millionaire. 4/5

Popeye (1980): The character of Olive Oyl was created for Shelley Duvall. Fact. 3/5

The Shining (1980): Another Shelley Duvall classic, this was my first viewing of this movie. I loved it because it was great. 5/5

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998): This movie is so over-rated. It gave me a thousand strokes when I watched it. It's so abrasive, and not just because it's supposed to be. 2/5

Dream a Little Dream (1989): A Corey + Corey classic! That is, Corey(Haime + Feldman). 2/5

The 'burbs (1989): I have never really seen Tom Hanks in 80s-tastic movies with big dogs, so I figured I'd watch this. It's just okay. 2/5

The Rocky Horror Picture Show
(1975): This is probably the biggest movie I have never seen. Who knew it was so sexual? I was shocked! Shocked! Even though it was a musical, I didn't hate it. Plus, Susan Sarandon in her undies! And Tim Curry in ladies' undies? Excellent. 3/5

Blues Brothers (1980): This movie put Chicago on the map as a major city. Also, it's jam-packed with guest stars! 4/5

(1984): Possibly the worst movie I've ever seen, Splash tells the patriarchal and paternalistic love story of Tom Hanks and Daryl Hannah [a mermaid]. She learns to be human by giving her body to Tom Hanks and getting a Bloomingdale's charge card. Great! 1/5

Down and Out in Beverly Hills
(1986): This movie is just okay, but I still think Bette Midler isn't the worst actor in the world! 2/5 pizzas

Mystery Science Theater 3000: Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964): This was my first MST3K movie, and it was pretty fun. Santa and space? That's kind of cool. 3/5

Up in the Air (2009): I pretty much hated this movie, and I'm not sure why a lot of my friends didn't. The message is all "People who don't want to get married don't have a soul. Eventually they will be worn down when they find true love." Oh also, let's squeeze in some poignant moments about the tough economy. Do not like! 1/5

Heaven Can Wait (1943): An Ernest Lubitsch movie with Gene Tierney that was just okay. 2/5

Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009): Not one of my favorite Wes Anderson's, but still gorgeous and really fun. Also, it stars the hottest couple in town. 4/5

The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993): Believe it or not, this was my first viewing of this movie. This movie is all "Halloween! Halloween! Christmas! Christmas! Halloween Halloween!" 2/5

Die Hard (1988): Obviously the best Christmas and Action movie ever, featuring the best Christmas song. 5/5

My Best Friend's Wedding (1997): More like my WORST friend's wedding! I only watched this as part of my modern classics series. By the way, this movie blows. 2/5

Saving Private Ryan (1998): More like Saving Ryan's Private! This was my first viewing of this, and besides being a tad long, I thought it was really powerful and upsetting. 4/5

The Lonely Guy (1984): Probably the saddest movie I've ever seen! These guys are so sad and lonely, especially Charles Grodin. 4/5

Shanghai Surprise
(1986): I saw this as part of a series illustrating Madonna's terrible acting skills. In fact, her acting is garbage. And so is Sean Penn's. Not only is this movie terrible, it's racist! Good fun. 3/5

Coyote Ugly (2000): This movie is garbage too! 2/5

Hold That Ghost (1941): My favorite Abbott and Costello movie that no one else seems to like that much. Maybe they are not that funny? Nah. They're the best. 4/5

The Royal Tenenbaums
(2001): Probably the best movie of all time, and! it's a Wes Anderson movie with a Black Person! 5/5

Old School (2003): Luke Wilson takes a way lamer role than the last movie I saw him in. Do not like. 2/5

Lethal Weapon (1987): It still surprises me that they let Mel Gibson be in a movie with a black person [you too, right?]. This movie is still the bomb, Danny Glover is super rad, and Darlene Love is an excellent addition. Something I really love about the plot is that the team doesn't care about how many people they kill on their mission. Boom. 5/5

The Blob (1958): Having being obsessed with Steve McQueen in The Great Escape, I finally got a chance to watch another of his movies. The Blob is real fun and real cheesy. Great job! 4/5

Annie (1982): Barf! 2/5

OSS 117 2: Lost in Rio (2009): A bangin sequel to a bangin movie. Jean DuJardin is French Austin Powers meets Don Draper. These movies are the best! 4/5

Stand By Me (1986): Last month, I had not seen Corey Feldman in any movies. After this week, I will have seen all of his famous ones. This movie was just okay. Obviously, its plot and acting are a bit weak, and they say the P word way too much. I guess the soundtrack is nice and it's kind of fun. 2/5

Synecadoosh, NY (2008): I love this movie for many reasons: It stars my boyfriend Phillip Seymour Hoffman, my girlfriend Samantha Morton, and my grandma Dianne Wiest. Another reason I love it is because after viewing it 3 times, I still don't know how I feel about the movie. 4/5

Muppet Family Christmas
(1987): As a child, this was the Citizen Kane of Christmas movies. Here's why: Not only do we get to celebrate Xmas with ALL of the muppets on Fozzie's mom's farm, but the Sesame St. cast and the Fraggle Rock cast also show up for some hangouts! 5/5

Flirting With Disaster (1996): Despite having a star-studded cast of Ben Stiller, Patricia Arquette, Alan Alda, Lily Tomlin, Tea Leoni, and topless Mary Tyler Moore, this movie was pretty lame. 3/5

The Goonies (1985): First-time viewing, last-time viewing. 2/5

Fantasia (1940): Dinosaurs! Centaurs! Composers! 4/5

Dead Poets Society (1989): I'll watch anything once in which Robin Williams recites Walt Whitman. 3/5

Animal House
(1978): I finally watched this! Frat humor is not my favorite, nor is making jokes about molestation. Oh well. At least it had some Motown. 2/5

Billy Madison (1995): Completely lame, except for the appearance of Norm MacDonald. Adam Sandler is so annoying! 2/5

(2005): I love hostage movies to begin with, but this is truly intense. Even though Bruce Willis is old (right?), he still kicks ass and works to resolve a double hostage situation [basically single-handedly]. You're probably thinking this sounds a little like Die Hard, but I ask you, Does Die Hard star Willis's awkwardly tweenish daughter Rumer? I think not! 5/5

40 down, 54 to go.

07 December 2009

Solaris (1972)

Oh my god, this movie was really long! I know that Tarkovsky is a big deal and all, and that this is every person's favorite movie, but I DID NOT LIKE IT. Maybe I just don't like a plotless movies. Maybe I'm not metaphorical. Maybe I'm turning into a dudebro who only watches Austin Powers and drinks Miller High Life. Oh well. These Russians are just way to esoteric for a blockhead like me.

2/5 pizzas

04 December 2009

Le Samourai

Turns out this movie IS NOT about samurais! It's about a dude named Jef Costello who is not fat nor from New Jersey. He is a gangster in France who kills a dude, gets apprehended by le police, and looks like a babe while doing it! That's all. This movie was pretty okay.

3/5 pizzas

03 December 2009

Big Trouble in Little China (1986)

It's another marvelous collaboration of the Dream Team: Kurt Russell and John Carpenter! Maybe you remember a couple of their other movies that take place in major cities? Well this one takes place in San Francisco, or Chinatown. As many racist action movies of its ilk, Big Trouble has a ridiculous plot: The guy on the right is bringing his soon-to-be bride on the right to America. She is kidnapped by the evil Lo Pan and his crew, so Jack [the man in the un-sexy tank top] goes to save her. Kim Cattrall is along for the ride; she's just some do-gooder.

They go into some underground lair to battle Eastern mysticism. I guess they're too busy doing that too smash racism. There is some kick-ass kung fu, though.

3/5 pizzas

The Tresure of the Sierra Madre (1948)

Uh yes hello! This is one of my favorite Humphrey movies! It's about greed! And capitalism! And friendship! [And the racist portrayal of many a latino man]. Just in case you are a crazy person and haven't seen this movie, it centers around 3 dudes who go looking for gold back in the day. The best character is the old man Walter Huston! Guess what? He's John Huston's [the director's] father! Anyway, he talks a mile and minute and totally schools the two young'uns about greed.

Other facts about this movie: John Huston makes a cameo and a gila monster takes over the desert.

4/5 pizzas

Last Life in the Universe (2003)

I finally got a chance to see this movie almost 3 years after a library patron recommended it to me when I worked at a certain media center. Turns out it was pretty neat. The protagonist is an obsessively neat librarian dude who often tries to kill himself -- not in a serious way, but more in a Harold of Harold and Maude way. Anyway, he meets this lady in the library who is reading a Japanese comic book. This takes place in Thailand, by the way, and the guy is a Japanese immigrant. And the lady speaks Japanese. It's pretty perfect. He's neat, she's sloppy; he's quiet, she's loud; they both like noodles. It's basically the Thai Odd Couple.

Please do watch this movie. It's strange and offbeat and pro-librarian.

4/5 pizzas

The Circus (1928)

Here is another big-deal Chaplin movie that I hadn't seen! He plays some character called "The Tramp." I guess that's a thing for him. He falls for a lovely lady [Merna Kennedy] and accidentally joins the circus to woo her. There are trapezes, monkeys, acrobats, you get the idea. It's lovely and fun.

4/5 pizzas

Viva Las Vegas! (1964)

For a person who has a billion problems with Elvis and who also really doesn't love his music, I have an irrational love for Elvis movies. You know, Paradise Hawaiian Style, Blue Hawaii, and of course, Viva Las Vegas! I hadn't seen this in years and it was really nice to rewatch it. Okay, I don't have enough space to address the patriarchy that imbues this movie. Obviously Elvis movies = heteronormativity, exploitation, objectification, racism, etc. These are problems. What I do want to talk about is the great songs in this movie. I guess this is a musical, and I guess you can add it to my list of two. Besides the theme song, it features many a great duet with Ann Maragret.

I'd like to point something out: You know how lots of people JUST wear leggings and a shirt and think that's okay? As if leggings are just pants? Guess what, they are not! Pants are pants, leggings are tights, people. This was a huge problem at my university, and I blame it one Ann Maraget. See below:

3/5 pizzas

Good Hair (2009)

Okay, this movie was interesting. I didn't love it, but it did address some pretty big issues: like privilege, racism, capitalism, and gender identity. As you may know, Chris Rock is a pretty hilarious fellow. I laugh at most of his jokes. He made this movie [that barely played anywhere, by the way] about what "good hair" is. Mostly, this means "white-looking" hair. Racism is everywhere, unfortunately. Chris explores what it means for black women to relax their hair with mysterious relaxer, and how this relates to race and gender identity. This is really interesting. About 50% of the movie interviews celebrities and non-celebrities about why they do their hair the way they do.

Then, I got a little bored. The other half is dedicated to hairdressing competitions that take place in Atlanta. This part is not really interesting for me.

Then, I got perturbed. The latter part of the interviews centered around The Weave and just how much money some women and men spend on having fake hair [usually imported from India]. So now we are dealing with race, gender, and America's and 2/3's world countries' socio-ecomonics. Anyway, the problem for me was the movie's framing of the weave issue. It was all "Ugh, women are so capitalistic. They shop so much! They spend 1000s of dollars on their weaves. They date men so that they will pay for their hair." Problems!

All in all, this movie was pretty important and worth it. Ahem, did I mention that it features a modern-day Salt 'N' Pepa??!?!?!?!?
3/5 pizzas

The Lost Boys (1987)

Turns out other important things happened in 1987 besides the birth of the author of this blog. This movie is totally awsome and I totally did not know it existed until this year! It stars like one billion celebrities: Kiefer Sutherland, both Coreys [Haim + Feldman], Jami Gertz, Edward Herrmann!, and Dianne Wiest. Star-studded, right?

Maybe everyone has seen this movie, but if not, let me explain. It's a vampire story. The people who look like punks are vampires, the normies are threatened by the vampires, and some people are conflicted. Everyone looks really foxy with their George Michael ensembles and crucifix earrings. Well, I guess the vampires didn't have those, but they did have dangley ones.

The best thing about this movie was that we saw it at Seattle's best theater: Central Cinema. For the screening each audience member received a goody bag including confetti, poppers, bubbles [to blow when Corey H. is in the bubble bath], and a kazoo [to blow when anyone in the movie says the name "Michael"]. Hint: That is a lot of times!

Also, let me tell you: this movie has one of my favorite movie theme songs:

4/5 pizzas