According to the Lazy Eye Theatre blog entry, the idea came when the blogger read an article about Diablo Cody getting to choose 12 films to be featured at the New Beverly Cinema.
"The Meme that asks what if YOU could pick 12 movies to run at the New Beverly Cinema?"At first, I wanted to categorize the movies with really random stuff like, "movies with cool flying scenes" or "movies that deals with gardening." But then the categories just did not sound cool enough so I just thought I'd keep it simple and go with broader subjects/themes.
1) Choose 12 Films to be featured. They could be random selections or part of a greater theme. Whatever you want.
2) Explain why you chose the films.
3) Link back to Lazy Eye Theatre so Piper can have hundreds of links and she can take those links and spread them all out on the bed and then roll around in them.
4) The people selected then have to turn around and select 5 more people.
So I guess my theater is closed on Tuesday because closing on Sunday would be ridiculous and unsound when it comes to the world of the movie theater biz. I picked a lot of movies that I personally want to see in theaters since I've never got the chance. I kind of drowned in rambling for some of the movies I picked since I never really had the opportunity to profess my love to them.
I picked Ordinary People because I love that movie tremendously. It has one of the most powerful ensembles I've ever seen. The performances by Timothy Hutton, Donald Sutherland, Mary Tyler Moore, and Judd Hirsch are all superb. Plus, first-time director Robert Redford's use of Pachelbel's "Canon in D" makes the film's opening and ending scenes domestic but strangely heartbreaking. It doesn't feature the quirky, weirdo dysfunctional family in the veins of The Squid and the Whale and Little Miss Sunshine (I considered both), but rather in a seemingly "normal" household where the father is utterly confused and the mother doesn't even love her own son. That's enough for me to conclude that the Jaretts has as much problems as their other so-called more dysfunctional cinematic family counterparts. Definitely one of my favorite movies of all-time and I would love to see this film on the big-screen someday.
The Royal Tenenbaums is the quirky, weirdo dysfunctional family that I previously mentioned. It was a choice between this or Junebug, but I just had to settle with Wes Anderson's smart, witty, and touching little masterpiece about the depressing adult lives of genius children. Starring Gene Hackman, Anjelica Huston, Gwyneth Paltrow, Ben Stiller Luke Wilson, Owen Wilson, Danny Glover, and Bill Murray, that's enough for me to want to watch this movie in theaters (yes, because of that cast). The script is pure wonder--sweet and full of Anderson's trademark deadpan humor. Oh, and how can you go wrong with a kickass soundtrack featuring Nico, The Rolling Stones, and The Velvet Underground? You can't. The movie has a very seventies feel to it, too, not only in the soundtrack but also in the costumes and sets. I'd love to have a The Royal Tenenbaums theater experience.
Unrequited Monday (Definitely spoiler-ish.)
Like I said in my review of Antoine and Colette, I love movies about unrequited love. There is a certain spirit about love unrequited love on film that is unquestionably romantic and powerful. Giant, apart from being a film of epic proportions, is a great story of unrequited love. The way James Dean's Jett Rink declared his love with anguish to Leslie Benedict (Elizabeth Taylor) in an empty hall with Leslie's daughter eavesdropping by the barely-opened door is one of the epic's greatest moments and perhaps even one of the greatest moments in cinema, period. So of course I'd like to witness that on a big-screen. The bigger the screen is, the better, because then it can showcase every centimeter of George Stevens's masterful direction and grand utilization of the widescreen format.
I've said many times that I consider Roman Holiday to be one of my favorite romantic comedies. When I really think about it, Roman Holiday is far from a pure romantic comedy. It has plenty of dramatic moments and it is the dramatic core that makes the film realistic and effective. The last scene where Gregory Peck's good-hearted American reporter Joe Bradley walks out of that hall makes one of my favorite endings ever. It is not an unrealistic cliche, but wholeheartedly bittersweet and memorable. While Audrey Hepburn may have stolen the show, Gregory Peck stole my heart.
World War II Wednesday
Empire of the Sun is one of my favorite movies ever. The gorgeous cinematography, the lush John Williams score, and the coming-of-age story has been charred in my mind forever. This may not be in the same league as Steven Spielberg's other WWII movies (minus the horrendous 1941), but it is all very classic Spielberg. The initial boyish wonder morphs into a gradual descent into the lost of innocence--all that is done with a certain cinematic magic that only Spielberg seems to know how to convey perfectly on-screen. In addition, the film features my all-time favorite child performance of all time: Christian Bale as Jamie "Jim" Graham.
I didn't want to pick another Spielberg WWII film, so I went with "The Movie That Should Have Won Best Picture of 2006 But Was Beaten By That One Scorsese Movie," Letters From Iwo Jima. I actually saw this one in theaters and loved it. The film lacks the lavishness that I like to see on the big-screen, but it's extraordinarily touching in every way. Clint Eastwood's war film is less a war film and more about humanity. The film was made as an afterthought after Eastwood made Flags of Our Fathers but it never feels like an afterthought. It is a brilliant companion piece that surpasses its predecessor in every way.
I just want to see The Godfather: Part II in theaters. It is one of those films that I would die to see in theaters, even more than the other Godfather films. I mean, seeing or The GodfatherThe Godfather: Part III would be super cool, but The Godfather: Part II on the big-screen would blow my mind. There are too many great scenes in the film for me to name, but I'll try anyway: Michael kisses Fredo on New Year's in Cuba, Kay reveals to Michael that she received an abortion (Diane Keaton...whoa), the boathouse scene between Michael and Fredo (just sums up why John Cazale was robbed of an Oscar nomination), when Michael tells Pentangeli that his father's advice (you know which one I'm talking about), young Vito in Italy, with a vengeance...I mean, wouldn't all that just be awesome in a theater? (And that poster above is probably the most effortlessly badass poster ever.)
I needed another gangster film so, um, GoodFellas. But this movie is seriously entertaining. I don't think there is another film that moves faster or crazier. Definitely one of Scorsese's best.
Dick Tracy is just a lot of fun. You've got Warren Beatty's goofy film-noir imitation of a performance, Madonna's sultry voice added to Stephen Sondheim songs, and Al Pacino's menacing Hitler-like (in looks) villain. Then you have those eye-catching sets and costumes colored with the bright vividness of ketchup red and raincoat yellow.
There are only a few films that gave that rare "OMFG" feeling when I'm finally finished with them, and L.A. Confidential is among those greats. It is what some might like to call a "modern film-noir," but at heart, it's just a smart, suspenseful, and all-around fantastic period piece and crime movie. The film has a great cast, featuring Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, Kim Basinger, James Crowell, and Danny DeVito. I love Wikipedia's description of the film:
The story eventually encompasses organized crime, political corruption, heroin, pornography, prostitution, tabloid journalism, institutional racism, plastic surgery and Hollywood.Yeah, the movie's got everything.
When I think of "filmmaking on film," I instantly think of Federico Fellini's weird, wildly imaginative, and moving 8½. Guido (Marcello Mastroianni) captivated me and the artist in me (there isn't really one, haha) I unexpectedly related to him. I guess as a wannabe-writer who frequently run out of ideas after page ten, I know how it feels like to be creatively bankrupt. But not only is Guido creatively bankrupt, there is a lot of pressure for him to churn out an idea. He even has a freaking movie set being built and actors lined up for his next movie that isn't even developed yet. I've always had a love for movies that are semi-autobiographic and personal to the creator's heart, and 8½ is in some ways Fellini's David Copperfield, but only expressing a certain feeling of fear and confusion rather than an entire life story. While I'm on the topic of 8½, Rob Marshall's cast for Nine is insanely wonderful in a it's-too-good-to-be-true kind of way. I can't wait.
Speaking of musicals, my last addition is Singin' in the Rain. I wanted to end my "week" with a happy, optimistic film, and there isn't anything as happy or optimistic as Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly's song and dance extravaganza. (Filmmaking Friday would sound nice, though. But I wanted a happy ending.) Besides being a movie musical, it's a clever and funny take on the film industry's transition from silent to sound and even of the Hollywood publicity machine.
I'm tagging recent commenters Shawn of Deadpan, Farzan of At the Movies with Farzan, plus Anil of The Long Take, Kayleigh of Shiny Happy Blog, and Nick of Fataculture. No worries if you don't feel like doing it, I'll understand. But for those who are doing the meme, I look forward to seeing what made your movie list!