April 25, 2004

Movie Watching

This weekend I caught up on lots of random movie watching.

This was on Movie and a Makeover, yet they did not do a makeover. Perhaps they did one and decided not to air it because it came out crappy. By now there has got to be a storage room somewhere (perhaps in Queens) filled with rolls and rolls of bloopers of various ill-fated makeovers, I’m sure Bob Saget is hording them all just waiting to make his comeback. Anyway…Cocktail. The first half of this film consists entirely of an ‘80s Tom Cruise throwing bottles in the air and catching them while dancing around and singing along to popular oldies. He uses his usual boisterous acting techniques: punching the air, clapping, and shouting, “alright!”, but somehow these things failed to endear me as they once so effectively did. They instead seemed really forced. It occurred to me that I’d much rather be watching a Michael J Fox film. Things really fell apart when Tom starts reciting bad poetry and the drama kicks in with Elizabeth Shue revealing she’s knocked up.

Blood Feast 2
This was of course not as charming as Blood Feast 1, mostly because it was made about forty years later, it did, however, continue with the same wonderfully absurd plot involving a catered party devolving into cannibalistic worship of an ancient Pagan goddess. There are lots of naked girls with names like Candy Graham and some charmingly low budget special effects.

The Graduate
This movie has given me something to look forward to. It’s extraordinary how sexy a pushy older lady can be. I can’t wait till I’m forty-something so I can talk in a low throaty voice and make demands on insecure younger men. “Ben, unzip my dress. Now!” I love any movie about depressed wealthy people with impetuous behavior.

I didn’t only watch movies mind you, I also found time to make my first springtime visit to the beer garden and had a long after midnight walk through Astoria. The highlight was discovering the brand new open all night Euro Mart. It’s an enormous supermarket filled with every random European treat you can think of, except for Yorkie Bars (the candy bar for men). I didn’t make any purchases, but I plan to make another 2am trip there very soon.

Posted by at 10:48 PM

March 10, 2004

Pretty + Ugly = Prizes

We just watched a bootleg copy of Monster. I think it was one of the most depressing movies I have ever seen. I assumed that Charlize Theron was going to be sort of annoying, the way Nichole Kidman was when she did the prosthetic nose thing, but Charlize was actually really good and this time the makeup was convincing, unlike that awful glued on nose.

The only thing that bugs me is that whole pretty-girl-goes-ugly-and-wins-an-Oscar thing is really obvious and obnoxious. At times it almost seems like these movies are just mocking their subjects. The real Virginia Woolf was not as frumpy as they made her out to be in The Hours and every time there was some mention of Charlize’s character being beautiful you felt like the person was weird or lying. If she had been played by anyone else there wouldn’t have been so much emphasis on her looks, she just would have been who she was.

I guess Charlize was good though, and maybe they just don’t make deep roles for pretty girls because the audience doesn’t trust them. The one interesting thing about it was that it made you feel like the character could have gone either way, like if she hadn’t had such a rough lot in life she might have been an Oscar winning movie star. It really did convince you that ultimately she was innocent.

My favorite thing about the movie was the way it combined corniness and heartbreaking tragedy, I think this is what made it so real. The way they set the love scene at the roller rink with some ridiculous 80’s song playing, somehow this made it really genuine. It made me think of this article I recently read about evidence from the Columbine shooting being shown to the public. The article mentioned all these everyday objects—regular high school things and odd relics of Middle America, suddenly these little things had become apart of this catastrophic event and had taken on a whole new significance. One woman’s daughter had been killed. She was an X-files fan, so her mother made a pin with her daughter’s picture and the words “the truth is out there” printed below. There is something so cheesy and at the same time so depressing and heartfelt about this detail.

Posted by at 11:37 PM

January 20, 2004

Top Horror Movies

Hand That Rocks The Cradle: This film made my 6th grade birthday party.

Satan’s Cheerleaders

I found this video at the local thrift store. It is from the very early 80’s and is extremely low budget. It is about a squad of super dumb, slutty cheerleaders who are kidnapped by satan worshippers. Surprisingly the body count in this film is very low. The surprise ending, however, makes it all worthwhile.

Nightmare on Elms Street 1
Most people don’t realize that the first of this series stars a very young Johnny Depp. There are many scenes that take place at the high school, something which always entertains me.

Friday The 13th
: Kevin Bacon gets stabbed through a matress while m.o.ing with a girl.

The few admirable favorites:
The Shining
RoseMary’s Baby

I recently saw a show about Patty Hearst: one of my favorite cultural phenomenon. It got me wondering, why didn't we ever try something like this at Sarah Lawrence? There were plenty of rich girls just dying to be martyrs for such a cause and everyone loved the rightous psudo-politcal stuff. I think that people just aren't as nuts as they used to be. Everyone is too jaded and unwilling to go out on a limb. Plus most SLC students would probably be too scared to handle firearms.

Posted by at 1:15 AM

January 18, 2004

Wanna Play Ambulance?

Last night we watched a horror movie from the 80’s called Bloody Birthday. It is the greatest. It involves a team of evil children a horror movie theme that I can't get enogh of. The premise is that these three sweet looking, blond haired tykes were been born on the same day-- the day of a solar eclipse. As a result their astrological charts show that something in their psyche has been eclipsed as well, their conscience. The kids become killing machines for no apparent reason.

Steven is the leader of the group, this third grader has big glasses, a smart haircut, and a Members Only jacket. He is a very shrewd little monster who comes up with an ingenious way of convincing everyone he’s innocent.

Debbie is an evil little girl with an abnormally large forehead, she looked like a younger version of the lead from Satan’s Cheerleaders (another great horror movie). In one of the first scenes she is charging the boys money to look through a peep hole in her closet so they can watch her teenage sister (played by Julie Brown of Earth Girls Are Easy fame) dance around naked. She later shoots this sister through the same peep hole with a bow and arrow.

There isn’t much to say about the third child, Curtis, he pretty much follows orders.

There was not a dull moment in this film and it simply baffles me that it hasn’t received the same recognition as similar films.

Posted by at 5:49 PM | Comments (1)

January 15, 2004

Flight of the Navigator

I just got Instant Messenger. I'm not really sure how it works but it would be nice to get a message, so if you know how you should send me one.

I was asked a while back to say a few words about The Flight of the Navigator.

First some little known facts:
1. The director also worked on classic The Boy in the Plastic Bubble, starring John Travolta.
2. Pee Wee Herman is the voice of Max, the robot that controls the Navigator.

This was a brilliant movie and I pity any child of the 80's who was denied the joy of seeing it. Every single person who wrote a comment on IMDB said it was a great movie. A group of strangers on the internet all agreeing positively about something, that never happens.

The movie is about a kid in the 1970's who falls through a time warp while walking through the woods with his younger brother. He ends up 7 years into the future, in the 80's. When he turns up, but hasn't aged at all he is subjected to endless medical tests and has to live in a room with a two way mirror. The whole idea of going into the future only a tiny bit is really trippy, pop music and fashion are suddenly totally different and the kid doesn't know anything, weirdest of all his little brother is suddenly a teenager and older than he is.

The kid ends up on a flying saucer (I don't really remember how) and it's sort of like ET, but less creepy. At the time it made the present feel very futuristic. It was fitting, becuase everyone was obsessed with the future in the 80's, the 80's even seem more futuristic than things do now. This is one of those great movies that BlockBuster is sure not to own.

Posted by at 2:47 PM | Comments (1)