Saturday, April 30, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 30

Day 30: Your Favorite Film This Time Last Year

Fish Tank (Andrea Arnold, 2010)

I'm not the type of person who changes their favorite film often--hell, mine has been Gone With the Wind for the past seven years--so I chose my favorite film of last year instead. Fish Tank will turn you on in the moment (Fassboner!) and make you think afterward. A rare combination, indeed.

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 29

Day 29: Your Favorite Film as a Kid

Aladdin (Ron Clements and John Musker, 1992)

It has always surprised me that, given the gay boy I became, my favorite Disney film when I was a kid was the one straight boys loved as well. Who'd have guessed it?

Friday, April 29, 2011

Dirk vs. Tom

King & Country marked the third of five collaborations between director Joseph Losey and actor Dirk Bogarde, a fruitful teaming that brought both the spellbinding The Servant and the mysteriously out-of-sync Accident. Add then up-and-comer Tom Courtenay, immediately coming off the twin successes The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner and Billy Liar, to the mix and you have massive potential for another classic from all involved. So why is it that King & Country is simply another film filling the resumés of Joseph, Dirk & Tom, lumped together with another non-descript WWI film on a barebones DVD? Nothing about King & Country is especially bad, but it ends up feeling like a non-event more than anything.

It's not as if fault can be laid on any of the three main players as they do their best to try and make the story of a WWI soldier being court martialed for desertion as interesting as possible. The problem with King & Country is that decades of courtroom dramas have since diminished any impact this story may have once had. Losey tries to hide the story's lack of surprise with insanely gorgeous black and white cinematography. And, more than once, the screenplay tries to hammer it home that "duty" (Does Tom have a duty to serve the army no matter his mental condition? Does Dirk have a duty to help Tom even if he doesn't agree with his actions?) is the overall theme of the piece, hence making this morality film a lot deeper than it actually is. These tricks work at certain points in the film but they don't hide the fact that this whole film could have been a lame subplot on Boston Legal.

If I'm being honest, I was really hoping that King & Country would be an acting battle between Dirk, who has been My Pretend Boyfriend for years now, and Tom, an actor I've been appreciating more and more with every film I see him in. King & Country didn't exactly live up to that dream, particularly since Dirk and Tom are on the same team--unfortunately not that same team--throughout the film (Dirk is the lawyer defending Tom's deserter). Still, the film provides a nice contrast between Dirk and Tom's acting styles. Dirk was an actor of the old school, a true movie star who just happened to be great at meatier roles as well. His background as a light comedian in the mid-50's helps Dirk with his role here as he must ooze charm when pleading the case before the court. His trademark bemused, almost smarmy, grin works as well here since his role as the lawyer is to mock the court for even considering for a second that Courtenay's actions were a crime.

Tom, on the other hand, represents the new, "Method" school of acting. He's more interested in character acting, which you can tell based on the films preceding this film (...Long Distance Runner, Billy Liar) and the ones immediately after (King Rat, Doctor Zhivago). King & Country gives Courtenay the opportunity to play a dimwit, half a beat out-of-time with everyone else in the film. His character, and Tom's acting, is evolving throughout the film as he slowly comes to understand the consequences for his action.

Neither Bogarde nor Courtenay nor Losey are reinventing the wheel here. They all perform their duties diligently, just as a good soldier would do, with the occasional lapse into something more. King & Country is a case where the whole is less than the sum of its parts and it is a shame it had to turn out that way. B

Thursday, April 28, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 28

Day 28: The Most Obscure Film You've Ever Seen

Decasia (Bill Morrison, 2002)

Much like yesterday's, this question is a bit silly in the scheme of things. It's either an invitation for some pretentious snob to go on and on about some film you've never heard of or really dumb movie fans to discuss that one time they saw some obscure film called Citizen Kane. I saw Decasia, a 67 minute long avant garde film full of clips from films on decaying film stock, in my freshman year cinema course during experimental week. It's an interesting idea but at 67 minutes it is far too long and dry.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Just How Wide Can You Open Your Mouth, Andy?

That wide, eh?

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 27

Day 27: Your Favorite Independent Film

Masculin féminin (Jean-Luc Godard, 1966)

This seems like such an arbitrary distinction, particularly for someone like me who watches a lot of movies. With that being said, I have to go with Masculin féminin, my favorite Godard film. I know that calling a Godard film "adorable" and "cuddly" seems like an incredibly wild stretch, but with Jean-Pierre Léaud in the lead role, how could it be anything else?

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 26

Day 26: Your Favorite Foreign Language Film

Stolen Kisses (François Truffaut, 1968)

This follow-up to Truffaut's The 400 Blows is never as highly regarded as that classic. It's a shame because Stolen Kisses is the rare sequel that isn't merely basking in the memory of the first film. Stolen Kisses is its own film, as light and adorable as The 400 Blows was dark and melancholic.

Monday, April 25, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 25

Day 25: Your Favorite Documentary Film

Bowling for Columbine (Michael Moore, 2002)

My favorite film of the last decade. The moment Michael Moore became my hero and any iota of political mindedness I possess was born.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 24

Day 24: Your Favorite Animated or Children's Film

South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut (Trey Parker and Matt Stone, 1999)

Definitely not for children, this animated film is not only one of the funniest films I've ever seen, but it's also one of the smartest and shrewdest attacks on American hypocrisy when it comes to censorship and parental control.

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 23

Day 23: Your Favorite Thriller/Mystery Film

The Silence of the Lambs (Jonathan Demme, 1991)

There was a reason why I was obsessed with Psycho Movie Killers in high school and why, every day, I made that obnoxious sucking noise with my lips that my man Hannibal Lecter does in the beginning of this film. To this day, whenever I see this film is starting on TV, I have to stop everything and watch up until Hannibal and Clarice's first encounter.

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 22

Day 22: Your Favorite Horror Film

Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960)

It's not the scariest film I've ever seen, but it is among the most well-made films of the genre. Plus, it features Anthony Perkins playing against type, freaking the fuck out of the audience with every stammer and twitch. And there's a reason the shower scene has become as infamous as it is. (Side note: the shrieking violins from this scene is the ring tone for when my parents call me).

Friday, April 22, 2011

Random Top 10: Sonny With a Chance Moments

With the recent news that Demi Lovato is leaving Sonny With a Chance to focus on her music career, I think it's time to bid a proper adieu to the beloved Disney show. The show had already announced that it was changing names (So Random!) and formats (sketch comedy), but Demi leaving is the final nail in the coffin. No one watches the show for the sketches, and without Demi, the show will be missing a vital ingredient that made it a success in the first place. Sterling Knight and Tiffany Thornton will have no one to bounce their insanity off of and it will be a total mess. But instead of dwelling on the negative, I want to celebrate this fabulous show. Sonny With a Chance proved to me that Disney shows could be as legit as network TV and got me watching Wizards of Waverly Place another amazing "kiddie" show. Their epic first season should have nabbed a few Emmys, while the second season, although not as strong overall, showed at least once an episode that the show was just as cutting edge as it was in the past. I will miss this show dearly. Let's take this opportunity to honor some of the best moments the show has given us as a way of saying thank you to Demi, Tiffany, Sterling and company for two seasons of pure joy.

10. The Real Princesses of New Jersey sketch on "So Random Holiday"
"Hey, yo, I walked the five feet to the front door so how 'bout a lil' somethin'-somethin' for your Prince Carmine, ya know what I'm sayin'?"
As a general rule, the sketches on So Random!, the show-within-a-show on Sonny With a Chance, are flat and uninspired, an opportunity for lowbrow humor before we get to the real show. But during a special holiday-themed episode filled with So Random! sketches this past season, this gem emerged. The ladies had previously done this sketch earlier in the season, and it turned out surprisingly well, but adding Sterling Knight as a guido Prince Charming proved to be the missing ingredient that pushed this sketch over the top. How can you not immediately love a sketch that features the SWAC cast parodying Jersey Shore, Demi/Sonny screeching "What am I, an animal?!" or a casual reference to Bruce Springsteen's Thunder Road? Springsteen! On a Disney show! Imagine that.

09. Chad and Tawni's Conversation in "With a Chance of Dating"
Sterling and Tiffany were rarely afforded the chance to work together, but whenever they did, they immediately clicked. My favorite moment between them is when they are discussing Sonny's upcoming date with a former flame of Tawni's, mainly because of this awesome exchange:

Chad: Why do you want him to back off?
Tawni: Why are you wearing a bib?
Chad: Jealous?
Tawni: I have my own bib!

08. 'High School Miserable'
One of the reasons I loved Sonny With a Chance so much was because of its fearless ability to comment on the conventions of tweenage celebrity and the culture that goes with it. Sonny With a Chance couldn't exist without the Disney Channel and its never ending parade of stars, shows and movies. In this episode, the cast has been fired from So Random! and are forced to go to a public high school. Accustomed to the life of Disney celebrity, the gang (minus Sonny) have no idea how to function in a normal high school setting. When they are rejected by everyone in the school, they start expressing their feelings through song. An onlooker asks Sonny what they are doing. She, shaking her head, says, "Apparently the only high school they know is the musical one." Begrudgingly, Sonny leads a choreographed number straight out of High School Musical. Instead of joining in on the routine, however, the rest of the cafeteria starts booing while throwing their trash at them. The delicious joke at the end which makes this sequence a hilarious send off to Disney's biggest hit: Sonny telling her booing classmates, "Seriously, guys? We just made all of that up!"

07. "Eat carbs, you animals!"

Tiffany Thornton has had many, many wonderful moments as self-absorbed diva Tawni Hart, battling Sonny for the spotlight or indulging in her own vanity. There is this really great moment in the episode "Fast Friends" where Tawni steals the show by (momentarily) helping Sonny out. Sonny has just done an interview where, inadvertently, she goes all "diva crazy" on Chad. She goes to the cafeteria, hoping to get him to admit that it was all a misunderstanding, but is immediately pelted with food by angry people ("There she is. There's the monster!"). Sonny enlists Tawni to cover her while she goes to speak to Chad. Tawni starts throwing rolls at the angry people, shouting "Eat carbs, you animals!" It's a simple moment, but Thornton completely nails it.

06. Chad Being Chad in "Sonny and the Studio Brat"
Chad Dylan Cooper is a one-of-a-kind character and I still stand by my belief that Sterling Knight should have gotten at the very least an Emmy nomination for bringing this character to life. "Sonny and the Studio Brat" isn't his episode, per se, but he does steal scenes like a motherfucking criminal. Witness some of his finest moments right here:

Sonny: Chad, you're so superficial.
 Chad: All I hear when you say that is, "Chad, you're so super blah blah blah blah"

Sonny: I have the sweetest girl here and she really wants to meet you.
Chad: Ooooh, what's she look like?
Sonny: She's nine.
Chad: *hangs up*

"Oh daddy?!"

05. Gassie's Funeral
There was a moment in the first two and a half episodes of the second season of Sonny With a Chance where I thought the show had lost the spark that made it so great the first season. The third episode started off with a whimper--the farting dog from one of So Random!'s most popular sketches has suddenly past away thanks to Sonny giving the unloved dog too much attention--but ended with a massive bang that proved the show was just as biting as ever. Chad offers to throw a memorial for Gassie since Sonny is too distraught to do it. She wants a tasteful ceremony which is Chad's cue to throw an extravagant memorial complete with a choir and speeches from his co-stars. While Chad is directing the whole memorial and Tawni is turning her eulogy into yet another attempt to make everything about her, Nico and Grady are trying to make a buck selling useless farting lunchboxes as memorial souvenirs. Coming just 8 months after the death of Michael Jackson and the media circus surrounding his funeral that everyone, even members of his family, took advantage of for their own gain, this is a biting commentary on the state of celebrity deaths circa 2010 ("You saw him as nothing more than a tooting ATM.").


Tawni, spending a couple of days without looking in the mirror, ends up looking like The Joker. It's a funny moment that proved that Sonny With a Chance, unlike some other Disney shows, isn't trapped in its own little world and can make suitable pop culture references with the best of them.

03. Sonny and Chad's Fake Date
"Now smile like you're having the time of your life."

From the moment Sonny and Chad first met, sparks flew and it was only a matter of time before they would become the biggest "will they or won't they?" couple in all of TV. It took a couple of episodes, but the Sonny With a Chance writers finally started letting them explore their feelings for each other in this episode by putting them together on a "fake" date to get revenge on a guy who done Sonny wrong. The date starts off with the typical banter that comes from putting Sonny and Chad in the same room ("If we're gonna hold hands, you have to switch sides...This is my hand-holding hand!") but slowly progresses to a point where they are "hypothetically" expressing their desire to date each other. Of course, their original mission interrupts any further attempt at exploring feelings, but it's still a total squee-worthy moment. Another reason this scene is amazing: I believe it's the first time we hear Chad's infamous sign-off "Peace out, suckas! Aaaah!"

02. Banning Zac Efron
"Because it's my wall. And I like saying I banned Zac Efron. There will come a day when Zac Efron comes knocking on that door and he's like, 'Hey, can I come in.' And I'll be like 'Oh no. You're banned."
The rivalry between tween heartthrob Chad Dylan Cooper and his more widely-popular foe Zac Efron made for some of the best in-jokes on the show, especially since Sterling Knight is friends with Efron in real life. CDC may be the greatest actor of his generation but the popularity of Efron is something he will always be trying to achieve.

01. "Battle of the Networks' Stars"
I'm choosing the entire episode because how can I be forced to single out one moment from the greatest episode the show ever created? "Battle of the Networks' Stars" is a brilliant synthesis of comedy for Disney's main demographic (children) and a more mature, meta commentary on these tween celebrities. The episode is about Chad directing a movie of his life. After trying to find suitable actors to portray the "losers from So Random!--no offense," Chad relents by allowing the real people play themselves. Except Sonny, that is, who is forced to audition for her role ("This is Sonny Munroe reading for the part of Sonny Munroe"). Before she's even finished, Chad has hired fellow Disney thespian Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato's best friend in real life at the time, to portray Sonny. Shenanigans ensue, which include Sonny calling Selena, in an obvious reference to her role on Wizards of Waverly Place, a "relationship wizard" when she calls Sonny out on liking Chad, and Selena mentioning that she was in a movie called Camp Hip-Hop, referring to Demi's breakout Disney movie. The episodes culminates in a scene on the set of Chad Dylan Cooper: The Chad Dylan Cooper Story. In a move straight out of Synecdoche, New York, Selena has hired Sonny as her "Sonny consultant" to help her get more into character. Mad at Chad, or attempting to hide her true feelings for him, she interrupts shooting a few times, reminding Selena that when Chad's "staring into your eyes, he's really staring at his reflection in your eyes." After calling him "the worst actor of our generation," Chad explodes and they erupt into the most passionately angry fight I've ever seen on a Disney show. I thought for sure they were going to jump each other.

Besides being a truly hilarious episode--even Nico, after spending time with lookalikes of himself and Grady who know how to get girls, gets a funny line: "Maybe they can teach us to be better versions of ourselves"--"Battle of the Networks' Stars" is a sly exploration of Sonny and Chad's relationship. Chad's movie recreates key moments in the Sonny and Chad relationship we've seen on Sonny With a Chance, but Chad has tweaked them so that Sonny has fallen in love with him. Is this simply an ego boost for Chad, a reminder that he can get any girl to fall in love with him, or is it wishful thinking on his part? And after Selena insists that Sonny has feelings for Chad, Sonny decides to don a cloak and wizard hat to become "relationship wizard" Selena, just as Selena has become Sonny. It's a great visual gag, and it does allow Chad to call Sonny "Scary Potter," but it's also a defense mechanism for Sonny. She becomes Selena as a way of distracting herself from the fact that what Selena said may be true. The fact that Sonny With a Chance chooses to portray the Sonny and Chad relationship in this manner is truly astounding; the fact that it does this while also being hilariously quotable is further proof that this was not just another Disney show.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 21

Day 21: Your Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy Film

Alien (Ridley Scott, 1979)

This one's a bit of a sci-fi/horror hybrid, but I can't really think of any other sci-fi movies I truly love and Alien is enough of a sci-fi film to count. I have nothing much else to say other than see this film because not only will you shit yourself in fright but you will be fascinated by the exploration of the unknown.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Nicky Hoult Rubs the Lotion on His Skin

I couldn't give two shits about whatever issue this charity is trying to raise awareness--and, honestly, it sounds like a bogus issue that's so obvious it doesn't even warrant a campaign like this--but any opportunity to see Nicholas Hoult in beach gear applying lotion to himself is worth every cent this bogus charity is throwing at it. I'm just jealous of the bitch who gets to rub the lotion on his skin. Why couldn't someone have hired me for this shoot to talk about one time I got sunburned on my back and it hurt a lot? I would have lied about getting a sunburn on my penis if it meant hanging out with Nicky and letting him apply sunscreen on my chest.

Here's a bonus picture from the shoot. I would love to stand under Nicky's umbrella-ella-ella.

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 20

Day 20: Your Favorite Romantic Film

Bonnie and Clyde (Arthur Penn, 1967)

Not a romance film in the traditional sense, Bonnie and Clyde goes beyond typical romance film merely by depicting a couple that will literally do anything for each other--whether it is robbing a bank or murdering someone while getting away. And it's also one of the sexiest movies ever made, which is saying something since the lovemaking scenes are interrupted by Clyde's impotence.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Days 14-19

Oops, I'm a bit behind on this. Let's play catch up, shall we?

Day 14: The Film That No One Expected You to Like

Star Trek (J.J. Abrams, 2009)

To be quite honest, I never expected to like this one either. But I guess low expectations really helped because I had quite a fun time watching this. Star Trek is one of the few recent action blockbusters that doesn't take itself seriously and has a bit of fun amid all the mindless explosions.

Day 15: The Film That Depicts Your Life

Waiting for Guffman (Christopher Guest, 1996)

This isn't my life, necessarily, but I feel like it's one of the few films that truly captures what it's like living in small Midwest town.

Day 16: A Film You Used to Love, But Now Hate

Our Modern Maidens (Jack Conway, 1929)

Usually it happens the other way around, where I hate a movie but love it the second time I see it. I had a hard time coming up with one for this as most of the shitty movies I loved as a child still hold a special place in my heart. I finally decided on Our Modern Maidens, a silly Joan Crawford silent melodrama that I saw very early on in my cinephilia. I loved it the first time but after a second viewing a couple years later, I couldn't see what I had originally found so special about it. I don't exactly hate it, but it's not exactly the classic I thought it was back then.

Day 17: Your Favorite Drama Film

Sunset Boulevard (Billy Wilder, 1950)

Norma Desmond is big and so is this movie, possibly the greatest movie about the movies ever made. It's hardbiting wit is still surprisingly strong sixty years later.

Day 18: Your Favorite Comedy Film

Bringing Up Baby (Howard Hawks, 1938)

The fastest paced, zaniest comedy I've ever seen, Bringing Up Baby gave new meaning to the term "screwball comedy." Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn were never better, riffing on untapped portions of their star personas.

Day 19: Your Favorite Action Film

Speed (Jan de Bont, 1994)

If only all action films were like Speed: a well plotted thriller that takes a simple premise and extracts as much tension and suspense out of it as possible. Bonus points: Sandy Bullock in her star making vehicle (ha).

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 13

Day 13: A Guilty Pleasure

Saratoga Trunk (Sam Wood, 1945)

I don't believe in guilty pleasures. There's no way I feel guilty for loving Spice World or Monster in Law. But I suppose the closest thing I can think of that qualifies as a "guilty pleasure" is Saratoga Trunk. I've written about this odd film involving a gold digging Ingrid Bergman and Gary Cooper as her confidante/potential boy toy before. While I don't exactly feel guilty about loving this trainwreck of a movie, I do think it's a bad movie, just so incredibly nutsy its badness becomes fascinating to watch.

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 12

Day 12: A Film by Your Least Favorite Director

Brideshead Revisited (Julian Jarrold, 2008)

I'm sure there are "worse" directors out there, but Julian Jarrold immediately comes to mind if only for the fact that over the course of two movies, he managed to dull the talent and charisma of Emma Thompson, Matthew Goode, Ben Whishaw, James McAvoy AND Anne Hathaway in two separate movies. He redeemed himself slightly with Andy Garfield's sexhair in Red Riding: 1974, but it's still not enough to overcome the horrors of these two atrocities of celluloid.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 11

Day 11: A Film by Your Favorite Director

The 39 Steps (Alfred Hitchcock, 1935)

This isn't my favorite Hitchcock film; it probably wouldn't even make my Top 5. That, however, has more to do with the fact that The Master has so many incredible masterpieces in his filmography than because The 39 Steps is a "lesser" Hitchcock. Like many of his films, this took me a couple of viewings to fully "get," but I absolutely adore this sleek, sexy spy adventure.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 10

Day 10: A Film With Your Favorite Actor (Female)

All About Eve (Joseph L. Mankiewicz, 1950)

The biggest bitch Hollywood has ever seen playing the ultimate bitch. They don't make 'em like Bette Davis anymore.

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 09

Day 09: A Film With Your Favorite Actor (Male)

The Mother and the Whore (Jean Eustache, 1973)

French New Wave icon Jean-Pierre Léaud has been my favorite actor for a couple years now and this is his greatest work. The film is sadly unavailable (legally) but it is well worth seeking out (illegally). The Mother and the Whore reveals a newfound depth from an actor we thought we all knew.

Friday, April 8, 2011

A Little Birthday Presentation for My Dear Samantha

One of my best friends in the world turns 23 today and I thought I'd celebrate in the only way I know how: hot boys. I went through and picked out movies we went to either for a hot actor or where we discovered a hot actor. I'm sure I'm forgetting something but it's hard to keep my thoughts in order when I'm looking at pictures of Andy, Jakey and Zac. Happy Birthday, Sammi!

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 08

Day 08: The Film You Can Quote Best

Spice World (Bob Spiers, 1997)

I know a lot of gays would pick Mean Girls, and I'm pretty handy with a Mean Girls quote, but there is no question in my mind--or those of the poor souls who have sat through this movie with me--that I can quote massive chunks of Spice World at the drop of the hat. I'm literally speaking along with the Girls, half of the time not even realizing I'm doing it. I'm sure it's pure torture to anyone who has watched it with me, but I can't help these things. I was a gay child and knowing all the words to Spice World comes with the territory.

Because I'm feeling generous today, here's a special bonus clip from the should-have-been Oscar contender Victoria Beckham in this movie:

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 07

Day 07: A Film That Reminds You of Your Past

Clueless (Amy Heckerling, 1995)

You guys have no idea how obsessed I was with this movie in elementary school. If you think my High School Musical addiction is bad, you should have seen me in 4th grade, endlessly saying "As if!" and "Whatever!" to anyone and everyone who could tolerate me at this point. I swear this movie turned me into a consumer whore for a very brief period of time. For my birthday after watching this movie, I wanted a cell phone (I needed one for high school so I could talk on it all through class!), a camera and loads of other electronic crap no nine year old could ever have a possible use for. The icing on the cake is one year for my birthday, I wanted a Cher Horowitz doll...and I got it! My poor father. I still wonder what he was thinking when he had to buy that for his namesake.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 06

Day 06: A Film That Reminds You of Somewhere

Requiem for a Dream (Darren Aronofsky, 2000)

My first weekend away at college I watched this film late at night with a couple of new friends, one of whom is still one of my closest friends on the planet. I had already seen it before, but I still remember grimacing throughout the finale and being thoroughly depressed afterwards. Fun times in the dorms!

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 05

(Missed this yesterday. Apologies!)

Day 05: A Film that Reminds You of Someone

Meet Me in St. Louis (Vincente Minnelli, 1944)

The first time I saw Meet Me in St. Louis, I was very "so what?" about the whole movie. Some time later, I was at my grandma's house and this film was playing on TCM. She's a big Judy Garland fan so we decided to watch it. I don't know what it was about this viewing, perhaps it was seeing it with my grandma, but I fell in love with Meet Me in St. Louis after this. For that reason, I'll always associate this movie with my grandma.

Monday, April 4, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 04

Day 04: A Film You Watch to Feel Down

Ordinary People (Robert Redford, 1980)

I have been known, after a particularly rough day, to throw caution to the wind and pop my DVD of Ordinary People in the player to depress myself even further. And then I'm an emotional wreck for two days afterward. Despite this fact, it is one of my all-time favorite films.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 03

Day 03: A Film You Watch to Feel Good

Singin' in the Rain (Stanley Donan and Gene Kelly, 1952)

One hundred minutes of pure, unadulterated joy. Great music, some of the most accomplished dance sequences ever captured on film and a gutsy, fearless comedic performance from Jean Hagen as the squeaky-voiced diva Lina Lamont. This is escapism at its best.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 02

Day 02: Your Least Favorite Movie

GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra (Stephen Sommers, 2009)

Listen, I was never expecting this to be a good film in any respect. All I wanted was a lot of shirtless Channing Tatum and the damn film couldn't even deliver on that! Besides, the badness of GI Joe went far beyond the usual mindless summer blockbuster. Everything about it is straight out of Action Film 101: a lot of explosions, middling chase sequences, cardboard cut-out acting and writing to match. To this day, whenever my friends and I see a bad movie, we console ourselves by saying, "At least it wasn't as bad as GI Joe."

Friday, April 1, 2011

30 Day Film Challenge: Day 01

I saw this on Facebook and thought it would be a fun way for me to blog regularly this month. Every day offers a chance to briefly talk about a wide variety of films. Such fun! Let's get this party started.

Day 01: Your Favorite Film

Gone With the Wind (Victor Fleming, 1939)

I just discussed why I love this movie, so I'll spare you the gritty details once again. But rest assured that this will forever be my favorite film. I've seen Gone With the Wind far too many times and obsessed over it for so long, no film will ever come close taking its place. Everything about this film is utterly perfect.