Wednesday, December 24, 2008

PROFESSOR KINGSFIELD'S HAIR-RAISING, BAR-RAISING HOLIDAY MOVIE QUIZ



Well, here it finally is, Christmas Eve, and all through the blog, several pixels are stirring—Ah, forget it. The best thing about this day in particular, when it comes together, as it seems to have this year, is that sense of calm, of everyone and everything being slightly geared down in preparation for time spent together with family and friends. (If you’re a holiday traveler reading this, especially if you’re stuck in an airport waiting for a runway to thaw, please make any attitudinal adjustments with as much good humor as possible.) Right now the office is muted, the skies are properly overcast (this being Los Angeles, that simple fact is cause for celebration), and there’s a feeling that nothing is urgent, no deadlines are being dangled, there is nothing on anyone’s plate that can’t wait until at least Friday. It is with this in mind that I proudly present to you the latest curricular offering from SLIFR University, a brand-new quiz to be lingered over, savored, and, yes, hopefully completed while you sit by the holiday fire tippling a hot chocolate or a hot toddy, whatever your leaning may be. The rather more casual approach to this holiday quiz, suggested by the generosity of the seasonal attitude, is perhaps the best counterbalance to the personality of the professor chosen to present it. Professor Charles W. Kingsfield, Jr., known for his grueling, unforgiving classroom demeanor and harsh, taxing and brutal testing procedures, has been asked to dial down the intensity in the spirit of sensitivity and giving typical of the end of the calendar year, and we think he’s come through fairly well. The length of this new quiz lands somewhere in between the briefest and the most long-winded of those questionnaires past, although Professor Kingsfield assures the rest of the staff that the queries are no less demanding, in their own familiar way, than any you might have previously encountered. The gruff educator has asked us to remind you, however, that when you deposit your answers in the comments section below, please remember to cut and paste the questions and include them along with your answers for easier reading and referencing. Otherwise, unlike the Kingsfield Pressure-Cooker Bar Exam, or the Kingsfield Pop Quiz of Terror, there are no time constraints—complete the quiz at your leisure and return your responses for the entire class to enjoy. So then, if your pencils are sharpened and you’ve no need to get up out of your seat for a bathroom break or grab a tissue or anything else that might distract your neighbors, you may begin at any time. And please remember to have a safe and happy holiday season while you’re at it! Mr. Hart, a question already?...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

8) Are most movies too long?

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

13) Favorite road movie.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?


Happy holidays to all y'all, and a happy new year too!

**************************************************************

61 comments:

Peter Nellhaus said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Last film theatrically: Pere Noel est une Ordure. On DVD: Fasssbinder's Third Generation, with Burn After Readin coming next.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty is nice.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Is that a fair question? Lupino as an actress and as a director.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Joan Chen, though I'd show up where Peggy Lipton is serving coffee.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I'd actually like to see Dr. No filmed as Fleming wrote it, with Bond battling a giant octopus.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

So hard to choose. Probably Inside Man for being the most entertaining.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney did more memorable work.

8) Are most movies too long?

Yes.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Harvey Keitel as Tom Paine in La Nuit de Varennes.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Gorgo vs. Godzilla

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Ms. North was a cutie, but Jean Peters has Anne of the Indies, Viva Zapata! and Pickup on South Street on her resume.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Some films get better with multiple viewings. And sometimes one gives in to participating in a blog-a-thon.

13) Favorite road movie.

Alice in the Cities

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Of available films on DVD, Ride Lonesome because of Pernell Roberts and James Coburn and the physical presence of Karen Steele. I do wish The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond was on DVD, though. I saw it a couple of times on TV. Boetticher and cinematographer Lucian Ballard pissed off Jack Warner by shooting in the style of a Thirties gangster movie.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Encouragement: Mom. Informed: initially Andrew Sarris.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I think everyone's seen the Walk on the Wild Side credit sequence enough to have it almost memorized.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

I'm giving this to Agar. Not only was he in more actual movies, but he played the one and only Billy Shear in Along the Great Divide, thereby allowing me to sneak in a pop song reference that Dennis might appreciate.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

More often than not, Godard seems to be cranky. Contempt is probably his most popular film and is often considered his best.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Married to the Mob

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

I should probably answer with Jodie Foster. My twelve year old niece really likes The Bad News Bears as do I, so the vote goes to Tatum.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

The moment in Medium Cool when the off screen voice yells to Haskell Wexler that what they are filming is real.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

>b>Les Bonnes Femmes


23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Minoru Kawasaki gets introduced to the US on three DVDs. The Rug Cop is the funniest.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Christopher for Breaking Away, Don''t Cry, It's only Thunder and his part in the TV series "Profiler".

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Park Row

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Sam Fuller would have made commentary tracks that would have been as good or better than his movies.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Bird.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Dooley, mostly for his support in Altman films.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

I will have seen even fewer nominees than in previous years and won't even care.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

My hope is that there some good new movies to be seen.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I don't have a top ten. But The Class is my choice for the best of 2008.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

I'm a Buddhist. I'm not even expecting any movie related Hanukkah gifts for that matter.

Patrick said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically, Zach & Miri - ugh with a capital ugh. DVD, Strange Brew. But only because it's a retelling of Hamlet.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty. The Ref, Bad Santa, Die Hard 1 & 2... not to mention the never-been-born part of It's a Wonderful Life.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Mercedes. I'll never forget that Exorcist voice until the day I die.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Jack Nance. "There was a fish! In the percolator!... Sorry!"

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

The Greatest Show on Earth. The worst Best Picture winner, so there's a quality pedigree and plenty of room for improvement.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do the Right Thing. Still feels fresh as ever.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

I didn't know they were brothers! But I gotta go with Lawrence for his timeless rendition of "Master of the House" on that Seinfeld episode. (Incidentally, his character is based on Richard Yates, author of Revolutionary Road.)

8) Are most movies too long?

"No good movie is too long and no bad movie is short enough." - Roger Ebert

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Bruce Greenwood in Thirteen Days, proving that a credible JFK didn't need an imitation of an accent. Steven Culp as Bobby is a close runner-up.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

James Dean vs. Rock Hudson. Geddit?

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

I see in Wikipedia that Sheree was the one who played Kramer's mother, and thus revealed to the world that his first name was Cosmo. I can't give it to Jean after that.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because I enjoyed it so much the first time, I want the pleasure of seeing it again. Or because others want to see it after I've seen it, and I'll go along with it for the sake of the company.

13) Favorite road movie.

Does Apocalypse Now count, or is that more a river movie? If it doesn't count, I think it's a tossup between Duel & The Straight Story. One for noise and one for quiet.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I... I am filled with shame.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

I think I'd have to say Danny Peary. His books, especially Cult Movies, introduced me not only to movies I'd never heard of, but to well-written essays weighing both the pros and cons. I disagree with him on Badlands, but I'm grateful he brought it to my attention and gave me incentive to learn how to have an informed debate.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

The credits for Beavis & Butthead Do America are the only opening credits to make me laugh to the point of breathlessness. They don't start until about the 2:40 mark of this clip, but it's so worth the wait.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8RKDyG3fSzg

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Tobey was Joe Dante's good luck charm. Agar was Shirley Temple's first husband. I think I'll go with the more hip response and pick Tobey.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Just cranky. The proof is in the horrible pudding that is Manos: The Hands of Fate, which didn't become popular in bad-movie circles until it was discovered by Mystery Science Theater 3000. Does this mean that for thirty-odd years it was better than it is today? I say no.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

The Silence of the Lambs. But Stop Making Sense can occasionally pass it when I'm feeling particularly joyous.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal has one thing in her resume that Linda Blair doesn't - a quality role that's wholly different from her best-known role. I'm thinking of Paper Moon & Bad News Bears.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

I believe Dr. T and the Women had a scene where there was rain on a wedding day. But if you're not talking Morrissettian irony, the one that currently comes to mind is the moment in Rio Bravo when John Wayne slams his shotgun into a bad guy's head, then says, "Aw, I'm not gonna hurt him."

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Pass.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Is it me, or has everyone forgotten about Shine a Light already?

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis, hands down.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

I'm going to go with Broadcast News. It has my favorite Albert Brooks performance, it discovered Holly Hunter, and it's got a terrific screenplay. Oh, and William Hurt may be the most believable anchorman I've seen in the movies.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I think the first question contains the answer to the second question. My answer to the first question: the Beatles commenting on A Hard Day's Night.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

I think Unforgiven. It makes a hell of a statement.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Paul, hands down. Did you know he was the head writer for the first season of The Electric Company and that Paul the gorilla is named after him?

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

There will be an upset in one of the Best Supporting categories.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

A comeback for indie movies - this was such an off-year for them.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

The Dark Knight
Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Man on Wire
Pineapple Express
Tropic Thunder


The list is in alphabetical order, and there's only five because I didn't see ten, what with my joblessness making tickets hard to come by. I'm sure Milk & Frost/Nixon will make the cut too, assuming I see them on the big screen - depends on whether I get those theater gift certificates...


BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

I can answer this now: My box set of films noir.

The Bandit said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Frost/Nixon in theaters; Green Street Hooligans on DVD. Man, is Elijah Wood lousy in that.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I like them featuring Bill Sadler and Franco Nero overacting, with Sir Renny Harlin wholesale *making up countries* and stuff.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Jessica Biel.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Lara Flynn Boyle of the hot chicks; For sheer smarm, who was that awesome dude who played Bobby Briggs then never did ANYTHING ELSE, EVER?

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Nah, keep remaking the good stuff. But just to give make Dennis see red, I'll say RIDLEY SCOTT'S THE SEVEN-UPS would be excellent.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

So many good ones; Very partial to "Clockers" and "25th Hour," though hard to argue with "Do the Right Thing" and "Malcolm X."


7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

"My way or the highway."

8) Are most movies too long?

Nope. Just movie audiences are too annoying to sit through them with for that long.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Hopkins' Nixon. Langella's Nixon. Hey, I should finally get around to checking out Phillip Baker Hall's Nixon.


10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

JET JAGUAR vs. THE SMOG MONSTER!

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Didn't Kael have this idiotic thing about seeing a movie only once. Lame. Apparently she didn't come of age with HBO in the early '80s, where you could watch "Looker," "Wolfen" and "The Last Chase" 176 times in one month; Many a Gen X "classic," from "Meatballs" to "Caddyshack" to "Fletch," were borne of frequent cable rewatchings. And to this day, I find it easier (and more pleasurable) to zone out in front of the Bond marathon on cable instead of popping in a DVD of some classic and forcing myself to watch it at full attention.

But Kubrick and Altman is the easier answer; Any and all of their movies improve with each viewing.

13) Favorite road movie.

"The Hitcher."


16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

"Halloween III: Season of the Witch."

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Mostly cranky. "Bad Boys II" was a big hit and a great movie.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Silence of the Lambs," then "Melvin and Howard."

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Linda Blair, since she was in "Night Patrol" with the Unknown Comic and Dice Clay. What a flick.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

"Redbelt," "Snow Angels," "Punisher War Zone" and "Lakeview Terrace."

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher for that weird-ass "Fade to Black" movie he did as a psycho film geek. Benson was a douche.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"All the President's Men."

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Guess it's no longer possible to get a furious Hunter Thompson paired with Bill Murray to discuss "Where the Buffalo Roam." So I'll take a Joe Rubbo, Steve Antin and Lawrence Monoson cast commentary on "Last American Virgin."


27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"Unforgiven" is the obvious and legit answer, but only one movie can contain the awesome power of a mincing Jack Cassidy, a black chick named Jemima, a gay dog, an albino Thayer David, a topless Native American hiking guide, multicolored climbing jackets, and a woman named Buns. Oh, and Clint's spectacular heavens-echoing delivery of "You aaaaaaaaaaaaassshole!" "The Eiger Sanction"!!!!

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith! The RoboCop villains were the greatest collection of character actor badassery imaginable, all at the top of their game.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Kate Winslet will finally win something, and Entertainment Weekly can finally shut up about it.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

"Love Guru 2."

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Still have to see Ben Button, Valkyrie, and that Kate/Leo thing, but for now...

Dark Knight, Gran Torino, Wrestler, Snow Angels, Frost/Nixon, Milk, Quarantine, Funny Games, Wanted, Blindness.

No offense to any of those, but compared to last year, a pretty lame year overall. Only one or two of those would've cracked my top 10 in most other years.

Ivan G. Shreve, Jr. said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Get Smart (2008) in the theater. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) on DVD.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Nice. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946), Miracle on 34th Street (1947), 3 Godfathers (1948)—I’m a sentimental slob.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

I’ll acknowledge that Ida is the better film actress (and director, though that’s not much of a contest since I don't McCambridge ever sat in the chair) but I have a soft spot for Mercedes because of her dynamite work on radio.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Albert Rosenfield (played by Miguel Ferrer). A real wiseass, like myself.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Frank Miller made this same case when he guest-programmed on TCM this December. He couldn’t think of any examples…and consequently, neither can I.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Probably Do the Right Thing (1988), though 4 Little Girls (1997) is a strong second.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

I honestly cannot make a choice here. I love Tierney because he was the baddest bad guy around in Born to Kill (1947) and (natch) Reservoir Dogs (1992). But then I remember Brady from He Walked by Night (1948) and Johnny Guitar (1954) (not to mention Shotgun Slade) and I realize it would have to be decided by a coin toss.

8) Are most movies too long?

Most MODERN movies are too long…I know that much.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Dan Hedaya as Nixon in Dick (1999). He played Nixon the way I remember him, as a cartoonish, paranoid buffoon.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Godzilla va. The Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man. That way we get audiences both old AND young.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Peters, if only for Pickup on South Street (1953).

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

“You might as well question why we breathe. If we stop breathing, we’ll die.” – Victor Laszlo (Paul Heinreid), Casablanca (1942).

13) Favorite road movie.

Road to Utopia (1945).

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

The Tall T (1957).

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Danny Peary and Leonard Maltin. It was reading their books that made me want to see as many movies as I could.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Touch of Evil (1958). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSZIejHVDnY

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
Kenneth Tobey.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I think he may be on to something. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) is as popular as movies come but I’ve never thought it was anything to write home about.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

I’ve always liked Citizens’ Band (a.k.a. Handle with Care) (1977). I wish it were more accessible.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O’Neal.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948).

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I’ve not seen any of his films. I throw myself on the mercy of the class.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Was it Albert Brooks who once joked about The Last Emperor (1987) by saying: “If this movie wins any more awards we’ll have to go and SEE it?”

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Ace in the Hole (1951).

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Well, it’d be great to hear a Casablanca track with Bogart, Bergman and the rest of the cast. Wouldn’t hold out too much hope for it, though.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Play Misty For Me (1971). (If you ever worked in radio, you’ll understand why.)

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

I love Smith because he was everything Dobie Gillis’ pop should have been in his long run on That 70s Show. But since Dooley is a fellow West Virginian (Parkersburg) I have to go with the local boy.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

That there’ll be a lot of gratuitous backpatting and many of the films that win won’t deserve it.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Every creative individual in Hollywood will awake one morning and realize that movies should concentrate more on character and story rather than stuntmen and blowing things up. And overpaid, undertalented actors will collectively slap their foreheads with their palms and say: “Ten million for a picture? What the heck am I thinking?”

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I haven’t seen enough new movies this year to qualify. I thought 4 luni, 3 saptamani si 2 zile was very good.

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift you received?

My family and friends rarely get me anything movie-related for Christmas for fear of buying me something I have already. So I splurged on myself and bought that big honkin’ Region 2 W.C. Fields Collection (the one with seventeen of the Great Man’s features). I have such good taste.

Alonzo Mosley (FBI) said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

In the theater, it was Quantum of Solace, which was a fine action film, though I was distracted by how the villian looks eerily like Roman Polanski. On DVD, it was Real Genius for the first time. I can see why my geekier friends (then and now) love it so.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I'm gonna go with naughty and give a shout out to The Ref.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Mercedes. I really need to see Johnny Guitar.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I don't know. The log, I guess.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I'd say that instead of pointlessly digging into classics like The Day the Earth Stood Still, they should remake one of Roger Corman's films. If it ends up sucking, he still gets a check.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Malcolm X

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney. Just keep dancing, Larry.

8) Are most movies too long?

Spiderman 3 was too long. Zodiac was too short.
The Dark Knight needed to be a miniseries.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Paul Giamatti as John Adams.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

The Stay Puft Marshmallow Man vs. Godzilla (Sponsored by Hersheys and Nabisco. Smores will be served.)

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters for Pickup on South Street.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because they are cinematic comfort food and, therefore, endlessly entertaining. I would put Clooney's Ocean's 11, The Quiet Man and The Adventures of Robin Hood in that category.

13) Favorite road movie.

Midnight Run, natch.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I haven't seen any of them, though I saw Scorsese mention The Tall T and have wanted to see it every since.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

I honestly don't think there was a one person. It all just came naturally.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Catch me if You Can
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaLDyrun_Cc

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Having just seen The Thing From Another World for the first time (and loved it), I'll go with Kenneth Tobey.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Cranky. Popularity is such a fickle thing, thus you have currently in the all time Box Office stakes (according to IMDb) Star Wars at #3 and, for the love of God, Shrek 2 at #4.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

My Cinema afficianado side wants to say Silence of the Lambs, but my old teenage libido wants to say Something Wild.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Perhaps Sleuth? The original, not the horrid remake (with all respect to the late Pinter).

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I've seen not a one.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Sorry. I'm drawing a blank.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Robby. I still have fond memories of Two of a Kind from my childhood.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

The Paper. Now if only they'd re-release the damn thing in widescreen.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

My favorite remains John Carpenter and Kurt Russell on The Thing, so maybe getting John to do some more for films he's admired.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

A Perfect World.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood, ornery bastard that he is.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Yeah, they'll probably give supporting to Heath, and I can't say I'd be too upset about it. He can party up there with Peter Finch when he gets it.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Given that my wife is due to give birth to our first child in June, I figure I have about five solid months of theater-going left, so my hope is that I make the most of it.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Sad to say, my list of films seen period in the theater this year barely goes above ten, but I will say again that no one should dismiss Kung Fu Panda out of hand. It's really quite good.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

One of my employees got me a poster of 101 top movie quotes (in tribute to a certain YouTube video) and it is now hanging on my office door.

Bob Turnbull said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

The last theatrical showing would've been "Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa" with my son and his friend. It was OK, but their giggling made it so much better.

My last DVD viewing was "Creepshow 2" just last night 'cause nothing says Christmas like a horror anthology. It too was OK...A pretty dull first story, followed by a good monster tale in the middle (a large pile of sludge in a small lake attacks some kids on a raft) and finishing up with what could have been the best part - a woman who runs into a hitchhiker, flees the scene and then can't shake that same hitchhiker who keeps popping up around, on or in her car (getting progressively bloodier each time) - but is too lazy to work with atmosphere or tension and instead has the lone woman driver talk to herself the whole time (as she rationalizes her actions and screams and curses the hitchhiker). As a family we had watched "A Christmas Story" just beforehand and loved it just as much as we did when we watched it last year.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Geez, I don't know...I like 'em both. I guess I would lean towards the nice ones, since I like my holiday movies to end on an up note, but I don't have a problem if they want to get mean and vicious somewhere in the middle.

I have an odd fondness for "White Christmas", but "Scrooged", "Christmas Vacation" and the aforementioned "A Christmas Story" are my fall backs. And Alistair Sim's "Scrooge" (which my Dad and I watched a bit of last night as well).

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida. No offense to Mercedes, but Ida not only appeared in some terrific noirs, but directed some as well. She must've been one helluva tough cookie...

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

The music. I'm not a hard core devotee of the show and haven't seen all the episodes, but I always found the music (in particular that opening theme) set the tone exceedingly well.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I'd like to see another really good heist film - "Topkapi", "The Anderson Tapes" and "The Hot Rock" all were slight disappointments for me, so using the central concepts of those films wouldn't be a bad idea. Get some good characters, a witty but compact script and work through a complicated yet hopefully somewhat realistic heist.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"Do The Right Thing", if only because the characters and what they say frustrate me so much while I'm watching it - the misunderstandings, the small incidents that get blown out of proportion, the people with chips on their shoulder that piss me off - that I get all worked up about the very issue the film is trying to bring out for discussion.

And it's an amazing looking film too.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

I didn't even have to look up who Scott Brady is to know that the answer is Lawrence Tierney. As it turns out, they were brothers. You still can't mess with the lit fuse that was Tierney.

8) Are most movies too long?

If it's good, it's just the right length (e.g. P.T. Anderson's 3 hour "Magnolia" and 90 minute "Punch Drunk Love" are 2 of my favourite films of the past decade).

Having said that, I do tend to look for shorter movies these days...There's been a bit of a tendency to stretch some films towards 2 hours when they should be cutting back to 90 minutes (or less). A good example are some of the Apatow (and Apatow-style) comedies - I enjoy them, but they are usually longer then they need to be. And that typically hurts the film a bit.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

I'm blanking a bit on this one, but the first thing that came to mind was Colm Feore's performance as Pierre Elliott Trudeau in a 2-part made for TV biopic.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

For the classic monsters, I think the Japanese already covered it (Godzilla vs. Mothra). For the more recent variety, that thing in "The Host" vs. that thing in "Cloverfield". Now that's a Pay Per View match!

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean was in "Pickup On South Street" which certainly helps, but Sheree has 4 times the number of credits and was in piles of TV. So I'm going with Lou Grant's old girlfriend Sheree...

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Why would you ever want to look at a piece of art more than once? Or re-read a book. Or listen to an album you've heard before? It's about the joy and comfort of experiencing art that appeals to you, re-experiencing moments that make you smile and discovering new things in works you thought you knew.

Pauline Kael was a great writer, but she missed the boat here.

13) Favorite road movie.

I'll go with "Almost Famous". Three others that jump to mind are "Y Tu Mama Tambien", "The Sure Thing" and "Going Places" (a 1974 French film I just posted about the other day). All fine examples.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Sadly, I've never seen one. I will rectify that over the coming year (I'm tempted to buy that box set blind).

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

I have to say, it might be Roger Ebert. Just watching him and Siskel discussing movies on their old PBS show (and later the syndicated one) - the overarching themes and the small details - made me start thinking of film in a different way. And as I started watching some of their recommendations, I found new avenues open to me. I tended to side with Ebert at the time.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

"Panic Room", "Anatomy Of A Murder", "Monsters Inc.", "Playtime", "To Kill A Mockingbird" (though the music may be different in this video) and "Halloween".

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Didn't recognize either name, but after a quick Google Image search, I certainly recognized both their faces. Tobey is the most easily recognizable - I just saw him in "The Vampire" and he was in "Airplane" along with a number of noirs. Case closed.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Either way, Godard is cranky. It's a statement that implies that "good" is objective - and as much as I want to think that sometimes, it's not true. Elements of filmmaking can be looked at objectively, but not the whole. It's a personal reaction.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Stop Making Sense". The big suit, the different lighting for every song, the energy of the band, the single take of David Byrne throughout "Once In A Lifetime", the jogging, etc. One of the best concert films ever.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum - I had a big crush on her in "Bad News Bears". And she rarely spins her head completely around so that helps.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

"The Others" is my first thought so I'm sticking with it. "Reality Bites" has a good scene about irony in it (though I didn't care for the film overall much) - Winona Ryder's character is pushing for a job writing until she is asked to define irony. When she can't, she says "But I know it when I see it!". End of interview...

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I just saw an early film by him entitled "A Double Tour". I quite liked it even if the ending fizzled a bit. Since it's the only Chabrol I've seen (sigh, yet something else I need to fix over the next year), I'll go with that.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Hirokazu Kore-eda's "Still Walking" and Valdis Oskarsdottir's "Country Wedding". The former is a wonderful examination of a family with plenty of charm and sadness. The latter is like an hilarious Icelandic Dogme 95 road film done by Christopher Guest.

Neither has been released in North America as far as I know though, so maybe I'll go with "Forgetting Sarah Marshall". The trailer didn't sell the movie at all, but when I began hearing some pretty decent reviews in a few corners, I caught up with it on DVD. The cast is great, there's some real character based humour, Russell Brand is terrific and Jason Seagel's "Dracula" song deserves an Oscar nomination.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Robby Benson always kinda creeped me out on the cover of my sister's Tiger Beat magazines...And anyway, "Breaking Away" is a favourite film of mine, so how can I not choose Christopher? On top of that, while looking at his credits on IMDB, I see that he has way more than I expected, appeared in a Fellini film ("Roma"), two Altman ones ("3 Women", "A Wedding") and an Oscar winner for Best Picture ("Chariots Of Fire").

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"All The President's Men" is the obvious choice and also a damn good choice. But I think I'll lean towards "Almost Famous" simply because I like to mention that film whenever I can.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I'd love to hear a Buster Keaton commentary over any of his films talking about his stunts, how they were filmed and what it was like making pictures at that time. I always found him fascinating whenever I heard interviews in his later years.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

His films don't typically scream out to me that I need to see them..."Unforgiven" is the exception.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Dooley. Didn't I just say that "Breaking Away" is a favourite?

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

"Man On Wire" for Best Documentary, "WALL-E" for Best Animated Picture (going out on a limb for that one...) and they will likely pick the least deserving song for Best Song.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That they keep getting made.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Well, my blog posting when I get to it later this week will be more about the best things I saw this year (regardless of when they were made) because I rarely see enough new films in a calendar year to talk about the best over the past 12 months. I did see a bunch this year though, but mostly from film festivals. Here goes anyway:

1. Synecdoche NY
2. Still Walking
3. Country Wedding
4. Man On Wire
5. Let The Right One In
6. WALL-E
7. C'est Pas Moi Je Le Jure
8. 4bia
9. Anvil! The Story Of Anvil
10. Soul Power

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift you received?

"A Century Of Canadian Cinema" by Gerald Pratley. Didn't even know the book existed and I'm woefully ignorant on my own nation's film history.

Flower said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theater – SEVEN POUNDS. Maybe I’m just feeling the holiday spirit too much, but I thought it was ok – the relationship between Smith and Rosario Dawson especially.

DVD – BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY. I hated almost everything about it.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Either/or. Why choose?

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

I love Ida Lupino in HIGH SIERRA and ON DANGEROUS GROUND, but I love McCambridge in JOHNNY GUITAR more.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Well, I had a terrible crush on Bobby Briggs, but my favorite character on the show was his father, Major Garland Briggs.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I’m terrible at these types of questions. Pass!

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

DO THE RIGHT THING. After that, probably WHEN THE LEVEES BROKE.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney, but it’s an uninformed choice at best.

8) Are most movies too long?

Not really. A few years ago this was a real pet peeve of mine – everything seemed like it was 20 minutes too long – but it hasn’t been a problem lately. The films that have gone really long lately – THE DARK KNIGHT, CHE, THERE WILL BE BLOOD, ZODIAC – earned it.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

How about the entire cast of JOHN ADAMS?

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

The Incredible Hulk (Lou Ferigno version) vs. Anita Bryant. HULK SMASH!

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters, though – again – it’s not an informed choice.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because it’s a ton of fun.

13) Favorite road movie.

MODERN TIMES.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

THE TALL T, I think.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My mom.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Tim Burton’s BATMAN – mostly because I fucking love the music.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l11BPzYehUE

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Yes.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Cranky. But it’s unprovable, so I won’t be citing evidence (sorry).

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

SILENCE OF THE LAMBS? Boring answer, but I haven’t seen most of his earlier work and his post-LAMBS work doesn’t hold a candle (even though I dig BELOVED, THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE and some of his doc work).

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

O’Neal, I guess.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

I’d answer this, but I’m a little worried that, like the Alannis song, what I cite won’t actually be an example of irony. And that would be humiliating.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

LE BOUCHER. A great, great movie.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

THE DUTCHESS OF LANGEAIS got good reviews back in January, but I’ve barely seen it mentioned since (apart from Glenn Kenny, who named it the #1 film of the year).

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

No clue – I don’t recognize their names or faces. However, imdb says Christopher played the Soda Delivery Boy in 3 Women and I like that movie, so there’s your winner.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

THE INSIDER.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I’m not a big fan of commentaries, but I’d love to hear Polanski, Towne, Evans, Nicholson, and Dunaway do a group track for CHINATOWN.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Favorite? HONKYTONK MAN.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Angelina Jolie will adopt a baby during the Oscar telecast.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That it’s a better year – and not just for the movies, though that would be a big help – than 2008.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Not necessarily in this order, and with the caveat that there are many films I haven’t had the opportunity to see yet, but:

THE DARK KNIGHT
THE DUTCHESS OF LANGEAIS
CHE
SPEED RACER
A CHRISTMAS TALE
HAPPY GO LUCKY
REDBELT
ENCOUNTERS AT THE END OF THE WORLD
HELLBOY II
MAD DETECTIVE


BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

All the DVDs I got.

The Beerman said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Don't get to theater a whole lot, but the last was Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Geritol Tablets -- until a tornado interrupted the screening. (And sadly, the comical evacuation of the Stadium-7 was a lot more entertaining than anything that was on the screen.)

DVD: "Teenage Caveman/Viking Women vs. the Sea Serpent" double-disc.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty, and most preferably with an axe-murder or two.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino for what she did on both sides of the lense, and for playing the wonderfully wicked warden in "Women's Prison."

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peak?

The stuck-in-reverse midget.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

You mean Hollywood isn't currently remaking every slasher-movie known to man? Maybe we can get Bruckheimer to remake "Terms of Endearment" instead?

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"Mo' Better Blues."

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Mr. Cranky Detective himself, Scott Brady, for failing his hostage negotiation training and taking it in the junk in "Wicked, Wicked."

8) Are most movies too long?

Only when they don't leave when politely asked to do so.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Dan Hedeya as Tricky "You Suck" Dick in "Dick."

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Godzilla and Gamera -- but they don't fight each other, and instead they fight crime!!!

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

I'll give the nod to North.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

I'm not quite sold on movies being medicinal, but if watching certain things make you feel better, like some do for me, then hell, watch 'em twice and then call me in the morning.

13) Favorite road movie.

"The Cannonball Run."

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

As much as I love "Seven Men from Now," "The Tall T" wins it by the length of Richard Boone's nose.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

A tie between Elvira, Mistress of the Dark and Joe Bob Briggs.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I know it's not the original, but I've always been partial to the Woolner Bros. alternate opening to "Blood and Black Lace."

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

In a drinking contest, or as actors? Ack, why must I chose!?! Either way, my money is on Tobey.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

He might have a point to some extent -- I mean, I don't think "Casablanca" did real well when it was initially released but folks eventually came around. However, if a movie is good, I mean good-good like he says, you'd think that people would, you know, try and see it. A lot.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Caged Heat."

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

O'Neal's got a better curve-ball.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

"I'm shocked -- shocked! to see that gambling is going on in this establishment."

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Since I've only seen "La Rupture" I guess that wins by default.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I've always had a soft spot for "Marty" but it always seems to be overshadowed by the other films that came out that year.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher in a laugher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"Absence of Malice."

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I had high, high hopes for a "Thing from Another World" commentary track with Ken Tobey and Robert Cornwaithe (while they were both still alive) that was moderated by Tom Weaver. Now I'll settle for one with Weaver, Bill Self and Bob Burns.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"The Outlaw Josie Wales."

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Um, together they fight crime? OK, OK, I'll give the nod to Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

The telecast will run long, but Hugh Jackman will surprise people with how funny he is.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Joe Dante and John Sayles team back up and do a remake of "THEM!"

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Honestly, I haven't seen enough 2008 releases to judge, but what I saw (Iron Man, The Hulk, Dark Knight, Wall-E) I liked a lot.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

A new DVD player since my old APEX decided to crap out on December 23rd.

Tom said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

The Fall theatrically. Futurama: The Beast With a Billion Backs, & The Mist.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I, like Peter Nellhaus, consider naughty to be nice on occasion.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

McCambridge

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Don't have any.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Don't have too many suggestions in respect. Instead of remaking films for the sake of it (whether the originals were good or bad), they should only ever remake them is there is some legitimate inspiration for doing so.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Don't have one.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence.

8) Are most movies too long?

A movie is only ever too long when it sucks.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Giamatti - John Adams.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

King Kong vs Godzilla vs Clover vs Rocky

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Indeed.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because it might have been good the first time round!

13) Favorite road movie.

I'm just gonna say it... The Devil's Rejects.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

None

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Roger Ebert and Dustin Putman, since they were the first critics I happened by a few years ago.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

There are loads of these, but Inside Man springs to mind immediately for some reason.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Neither

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Well just about everyone loves the Godfather and that's a great film. On the other hand... Transformers.... ugh.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

The Silence of the Lambs

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

O'Neal.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

All I can think of is Saw, and I know that isn't right. Or The Mist... but I don't think that's it either.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Don't have one.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Water Lilies!!!

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Err.. the Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

I'm rushing through this, and answering this would require me to think for more than thirty seconds.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

George Bush on Bowling for Columbine.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Million Dollar Baby

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Dooley

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

We'll get loads of crap forced down our throats and then witness an undeserving Best Picture winner. That seems like a safe bet.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

More great films, as ever.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

http://nopopcornplease.wordpress.com/2008/12/20/2008-year-in-film/

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Had barely anything related to movies, save for a Futurama movie, which I'm not ashamed to admit loving.

Jonathan Pacheco said...

I'll leave a selection of answers, since I"m too lazy to do them all:

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: I saw Synecdoche, New York for the second time.

DVD/Blu-ray: I'm counting online streaming and downloads in this, and I'll go ahead and say I watched Go (1999) on Hulu.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Nice. Give me a Home Alone or a Rudy and I'll be all warm and fuzzy inside (and possibly outside).

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

The safe choice: Do the Right Thing. I enjoyed Inside Man, He Got Game, even She Hate Me and Bamboozled, but they were always lacking something. But also, I must note that I haven't seen When the Levees Broke as well as some of his earlier, stronger work.

8) Are most movies too long?

My attention span has shortened significantly from watching so much TV so often, but I still believe most movies are way too short. Part of that comes from the fluff that the majority of movies have in them. As a result, the "real movie" is even shorter. Longer doesn't equal better, but I think it'll often give it a better chance. Just as I'd rather read a longer review for a film than a 500 word blurb, a longer film has the potential to go much more in depth, and that's what I'm looking for. But make no mistake, there are some brilliant, insightful films that are less than 90 minutes long.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

The Giant Breast from Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* VS. Daniel Plainview of There Will Be Blood, simply for the opportunity for milk/milkshake jokes.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

I watch plenty of TV episodes and movies each day, and sadly, the majority of them I've seen already. Sometimes it's out of laziness (I need something I can ignore), but that's not what we're talking about here.

To believe that good movies don't warrant multiple viewings is incredibly short-sighted. The majority of film-viewers are not as astute as they'd like to think. Watching a movie is hopefully an engrossing experience, and watching it again will allow you to focus more on what you're seeing as opposed to the mere experience you feel on the initial viewing. The first viewing of a film can tell you a lot of about it, but a good movie will always have more to offer. Why not find what lies beneath?

13) Favorite road movie.

Can't really think of one, but I love every "Holiday Road" sequence from the Vacation movies.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I think looking at the weekly box office will almost always prove Godard correct. Almost.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

I'm not into Demme nearly as much as the next guy, so I'll go with Rachel Getting Married. Not a perfect film, but some moments are just too wonderful.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

What a long year this has been. Do you realize Cloverfield was released this year? Seems like ages ago. Even still, I feel like I'm missing a lot. So maybe someone can recommend to ME a film that needs more attention.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Give me something with Kubrick and I'll die a happy man.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Million Dollar Baby. It's lost some of its luster, but I just remember being blown away by it.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Prediction: It will be disappointing.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Well, like every year, I hope they're better.

Most of my hopes are actually for me: to see more than the mainstream blockbusters, to challenge myself, to read film at a higher level...

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

All I know is that Synecdoche, New York is #1, and #2 is so far behind, it might as well be #12.

Kim said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
In the theater? The new James Bond.
On DVD, the Muppets Family Christmas -- don't remember the exact title, but it was on TV a few years ago and is the parody of Wonderful Life.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?
Nice. Definitely.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
I would say Lupino, but only because I don't know McCambridge.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
Never watched it, but... I always liked David Duchovny. all his current blatant flaws notwithstading.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.
Um, I think they should STOP trying to remake films and just make some good ones in the first place. Get your own ideas, Hollywood!

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.
Not a fan, but Jungle Fever has a place in my heart/mind as a film I watched the weekend I went to U of Chicago to check out the campus.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
Starting to feel cinematically challenged.

8) Are most movies too long?
Depends on the movie, but some are not long enough.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
Has Bush been acting this whole time? (I need to see many movies.)

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
Dracula VS the Balrog.
Mist VS Fire
Two nearly incorporeal bodies REALLY rip bodies apart

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
Once again... duhhhhh.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
The first flick I ever saw more than once was Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure. 11 years old and I got mom to drop me at the theater THREE TIMES for that classic piece of 80s cinema.

Sometimes you just need to squeeze as much joy out of life (and movies) as you can, and a movie can be as comforting as a good old friend.

13) Favorite road movie.
Although they were walking... Stand By Me.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
Once again.... errrr....

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
I'd say my older brother. Repeated watchings of the ONLY Star Wars trilogy, Superman II, Last Starfighter and the Last Starman definitely have left their mark.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)
Dead Again.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
Uh, nope.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.
Just cranky. What are his requirements for "good"? Just as any culture has different definitions, literally and morally, of the word, so may one person. BTW, it's just a movie. If you like it, you like it, and who you are and why you like it will change over time.

The girls may one day grow to HATE High School Musical, but it's good to them, where they are right now.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
WHile I now at least recognize the name, I'd have to IMDB it and I should be working....

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
Linda Blair.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
The end of Casablanca.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
Aaaaaand... nope

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
Um, if I had seen more, I would be more qualified to say.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
Robby Benson.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.
While All The President's Men comes to mind, I think I preferred The Paper.
-Kim
26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Ali Arikan said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

The last movie I saw at the cinema was The Day The Earth Stood Still. There is a scene at a McDonald's where Keanu Reeves meets with James Hong, also an alien pilgrim (SPOILER!), and the two start having an interplenary tête-à-tête in Mandarin. It’s supposed to be pivotal scene, but all I could think of was Wayne's World 2 where Mike Myers and James Hong also start conversing in Mandarin – the latter is played for laughs, the former gets them gratis. I half expected Keanu to take out a katana blade. Not that katana blade.

I finally saw Thank You For Smoking on DVD last Sunday. It’s a very entertaining film, subtle yet powerful, and, at times, incredibly funny. Aaron Eckhart carries the film – without him, the film might, just might, have floundered a bit.

Sod it. I cannot tell a lie. After Thank You For Smoking was over, I realised I had time for another film before I hit the sack. My choice? The Wedding Date, with Debra Messing (who is one of the most photogenic actresses of her generation), and, er, that guy.

You know?

Always wears a shirt?

Him, yeah!

I usually enjoy tripe, but this was tripe mixed with saccharine: an equally egregious combination as food and as metaphor.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I love them. It’s A Wonderful Life is Capra’s best film. Bell, Book and Candle. Die Hard!

And it’s not just Christmas, either. Groundhog Day! Trains, Planes and Automobiles!

I even enjoy Jingle All The Way.

You didn’t ask, but my favourite joke in an Arnie film is from The Last Action Hero. In the trailer for the film-within-a-film version of Hamlet, starring Arnie’s alter-ego, Don LaFontaine intones, solemnly:

“Something’s rotten in the State of Denmark…”

Cut to:

Arnie: To be or not to be…

“And Hamlet’s taking out the trash!”

Cut to:

Arnie awileding a machine gun: Not to be!

“No one’s gonna tell this sweet prince goodnight.”

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Mercedes McCambridge. Her voice had amazing range, and was almost as distinctive as that of Orson Welles. Didn’t they have a thing?

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Michael Horse as Deputy Hawk. He was also in a great episode of The X-Files, too.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

The Princess Bride. Here is why.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

25th Hour.

It’s not the most obvious example of his oeuvre, but it’s one that has resonated with me the most over the years.

A few months ago, almost a year ago actually, I saw Jungle Fever for the first time. There is a scene where the women sit around a living room, and talk about men, society, race – but mainly men. I read that the dialogue was mostly improvised, and it turns almost musical accompanied with Stevie Wonder’s dulcet score in the background. It’s one of the greatest scenes in cinema.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Both.

I love Tierney for a lot of things, but, mostly, for his work as Cyrus Redblock and Joe, er, the Gangster (I so wanted to type Plumber), in Star Trek: TNG and Reservoir Dogs respectively.

And Scott Tierney? Dude! Gremlins! Come on!

8) Are most movies too long?

No, but most questionnaires are.

[Latka]Koodding.[/Latka]

Anyway, no. Only the bad ones outstay their welcome.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Micheal Sheen as Tony Blair in The Deal and The Queen. I am so fricking psyched for The Special Relationship. And, while we are on the subject of British politicians, I also like Ian McKellen’s John Profumo in Scandal (though it’s John Hurt who steals the show, overall, in that flick).

Finally, I am also a fan of Martin Sheen’s prescient performance as Barack Obama in The West Wing.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

I have to go along with Rob Reiner here: Kramer vs Kramer vs Godzilla.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Viva Josefa Zapata!

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

It’s most definitely not true what they say. You can’t have too much of a good thing.

(If it were true, life would not exist)

13) Favorite road movie.

Plains, Trains and Automobiles.

Again, you didn’t ask, but, I’ll tell you. Favourite actor whose name starts with an M and ends with icheal McKean: Michael McKean.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Ride Lonesome. In fact, that’s the only one of his pictures that I’ve ever seen, I think.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My dad.

Others: Roger Ebert, Jim Emerson, Matt Seitz, and you, big boy.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

North By Northwest.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

John Agar.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

He is being cranky. There’s a Robert Graves quote about Shakespeare: “Despite the fact that everyone says he's very good; he really is very good.”

Though, this summer, most people were wrong. The Dark Knight is bollocks.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

The Silence of the Lambs (see above quote on Will).

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Both; at the same time, thanks.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

A Mighty Wind. Harry Shearer’s character, Mark Shubb, has had a sex change and he’s talking about it to the camera, sitting next to his bandmates, Christopher Guest’s Alan Barrows and Micheal McKean’s Jerry Palter. He goes into a bizarre rant:

“It was like a great big door opening for me... Town Hall... after that concert, I realized I wanted to spend as much of the rest of my life as possible playing folk music with these gentlemen and I wanted to spend all of it as a woman. I came to a realization that I was - and am - a blonde, female folk singer trapped in the body of a bald, male folk singer and I had to LET ME OUT or I WOULD DIE.”

Jerry Palter breaks the uncomfortable silence: “When you put it that way, it's almost poetry.”

Alan Burrows, after a beat: Almost.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Not a big fan of his work. I remember not disliking Madame Bovary.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

The X-Files: I Want To Believe and Swing Vote were both considered duds – critically, and financially. They’re both excellent.

Also, Forgetting Sarah Marshall was as good, if not better, than the admittedly wonderful Pineapple Express.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Broadcast News.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Orson Welles doing live commentary on his film version of Arthur C Clarke’s Childhood’s End. While drunk.

(There is a script of this project somewhere in LA – if you find it, send it over please)

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Unforgiven.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Paul Dooley. Love him in Curb. Love him in A Mighty Wind. Love him in everything.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

It’s going to be wank.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Awe.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Not finished yet, since there is so many films that have yet to open here in Turkey.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

A shot of Dolores Madeleine Haze, taken by Jim Emerson’s Blackberry, in his back porch. He calls it his Let The Right One In shot. It’s glorious.

L. Rob Hubb said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

The last movie I saw theatrically was... BUNKER HILL, at a special screening in Topeka, KS.

Last movie watched DVD - THE MIST, b/w version & Larry Fessenden's THE LAST WINTER.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I like my holiday movies slightly naughty - THE REF remains a favorite; although I have no real feeling for BAD SANTA. I like the Christmas digs in GREMLINS, and virtually nothing else in that movie; BRAZIL; THE ICE STORM is also over Christmas...

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida wins out... "One for the road, and one for my baby and me"

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

The Log Lady.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I've been thinking how a remake of THE NIGHT OF THE LEPUS might play - to the extent of tracking down the source material (THE YEAR OF THE ANGRY RABBIT - and it's a satirical novel) and imagining it as an intentional comedy. Bad as the movie is, I don't think a remake can recreate the surreal quality of slow motion rabbits tromping across miniature landscapes.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

SCHOOL DAZE


7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

I think the question of length depends on how involved you are in the film. If you are genuinely involved, you don't notice the length.

I don't think most GOOD movies are too long.... on the other hand, there are TONS of BAD movies that overstay their welcome after 20-30 minutes.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Lee Wallace as "The Mayor" in THE TAKING OF PELHAM 1 2 3

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

I think that's been done already - WERNER HERZOG VS. ABEL FERRARA.


11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Sheree North

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Why would anyone ever need to masturbate more than once?

Not attempting to be vulgar, just making a point about the Pleasure Principle.

13) Favorite road movie.

THUNDERBOLT AND LIGHTFOOT

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Have never seen a Budd Boetticher film, to my knowledge.

So sue me.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Bernard Herrmann

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

MARS ATTACKS!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=psp88TYyJRI

If you grew up on 50's sci-fi, you get the joke instantly.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Draw.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

CLOVERFIELD

Make up your own mind...

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

CITIZEN'S BAND

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Linda Blair. Though Tatum would have the best drugs...

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

ADAPTATION - Donald Kaufman's contribution to the last third of the film.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
I have not seen a Claude Chabrol film, to my knowledge.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I probably haven't seen it yet...

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

COBB

and PARK ROW (if Fox will ever release it from the vaults).


26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

There should be a commentary for HEAD - all the principal players are still alive: Bob Rafelson, The Monkees, Jack Nicholson.


27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

THE OUTLAW JOSEY WALES. It holds up on all ends - story, acting, technical quality.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Paul Dooley. The Altman work trumps all. And his bit in the excised finale of LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

I really don't give a s*^t about the Oscars anymore.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

THE ONLY GOOD INDIAN will rule Fall 2009!

Those going to Sundance will soon understand.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I didn't see enough new films in 2008 to even have a Top 5 list...

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Not one I received, but one I gave - I bought my aunt the Barbie Tippi Hedren doll from THE BIRDS. She loved it.

Gifts I received - soundtrack CD's of THE DAY OF THE DOLPHIN, BATMAN-THE ANIMATED SERIES and MILLENNIUM

Brian said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically- Shohei Imamura's _Intentions of Murder_. On DVD: Claude Jutra's _Mon Oncle Antoine_.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I like the ones I like: _the Shop Around the Corner_, _the Unholy Three_, _Fanny and Alexander_, the original _Black Christmas, _Remember the Night, _Gremlins_, _a Christmas Tale_- seems like a tonally mixed bag to me. Two I don't like: _Bad Santa_ (too naughty?) and _a Christmas Story_ (too nice?).

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

I prefer _On Dangerous Ground_ to _Johnny Guitar_: Mary Malden over Emma Small. Plus Lupino carried the megaphone for a time as well, which appeals to my director-centric approach to cinema.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I'm utterly shocked to be the first to mention Sherliyn Fenn as Audrey Horne.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Trying to come up with a good answer for this question has me doubting the initial premise. Do we really want remakes of _World Trade Center_, _Suburban Commando_ or _Bats_?

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

If only because it's been awhile since I've seen _Do The Right Thing_ or _Clockers_, I'm going to say _When the Levees Broke_, which I recently revisited and found all the more masterful.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Having seen _Born To Kill_ I have to vote for the older brother.

8) Are most movies too long?

Any film I can't get around to watching is too long. The films I see are just the right length- if not too short!

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

A double-feature: Sean Penn in _Milk_ and Madonna in _Evita_.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

My favorite Tsuburaya vs. my favorite Harryhausen: _Mothra_ vs. the Roc from _Seventh Voyage of Sinbad_. Guess I like flying monsters.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

I really don't know North. Jean Peters was awful in _Apache_, but wonderful in _Anne of the Indies_ and _Pickup on South Street_. She gets my vote.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

My memory stinks.

13) Favorite road movie.

_Pee-Wee's Big Adventure_

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

It's a tough call (and I've still only seen a half-dozen or so), but I'm gonna pick the one I saw sitting next to you, Dennis: _Seven Men From Now_.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Gotta be my dad: he took me to _Star Wars_ at age four, a revival of _Lawrence of Arabia_ at age 15, and showed me my first films by Hitchcock, Herzog, Coppola, etc. on television or videotape. He also got me hooked on Siskel & Ebert from an early age, and I was a pretty loyal viewer until Siskel's death (though I'd actually always preferred Roger, his tv presence was never the same without Gene to keep him on his toes.) Perhaps ironically, that's when my cinephilia really started to blossom, but dad was crucial in laying the foundation.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I don't know if it's my all-time favorite but I really like the opening of the original Pang Brothers version of _The Eye_- though even if I could find a youtube link I'm not sure it's worth spoiling an effect that was terrific on the big screen but wouldn't work so well digitally.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

I can't pretend these names ring a bell, but upon looking them up I realize that they absolutely should. John Agar is terrific in _She Wore a Yellow Ribbon_- you can't really go wrong starting your career with John Ford- but Kenneth Tobey's filmography, with lead roles in so-called "B" classics like _The Thing From Another World_ and _It Came From Beneath the Sea_, makes him the even more criminally underlooked of the two.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I think he has a point- I think the films that cross into the consciousness of even those people who don't think about movies very much are often examples of films in which a connection to the zeitgeist or a tap into the submerged fears of the general population overwhelms the filmmaking. I'll cite boxofficemojo's highest-grossing film of all time (adjusted for inflation) as my evidence, even though I'm sure I'll find disagreement about this bloated mess of a film: _Gone With the Wind_.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

I like his performance films best: _Swimming to Cambodia_ or _Stop Making Sense_

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Gotta be Tatum O'Neal. I haven't even seen _Paper Moon_ yet, but she was great in _Little Darlings_, _Nickelodeon_ and _The Bad News Bears_.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

The holidays have me thinking of _All That Heaven Allows_: the television scene of course.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I haven't seen a lot of his most highly-regarded films, but I really liked his first feature _Le Beau Serge_.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

A terrific documentary called _The Women of Brukman_ has been overlooked by everyone, (including myself) since I saw it at Sundance early this year, even as it's become timelier and timelier over the months. I suppose distributors and festival programmers fear it too closely resembles _The Take_, another documentary on collectivist responses to the Argentinean economic crisis. But though it lacks the Naomi Klein brand name, it's a far better film than that one.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Two more blank stares. (one of the great things about these quizzes is the way they bring forgotten actors out of the memory hole) Once I saw that Christopher had played the lead in _Breaking Away_, I knew this was no contest. But I have to say I've heard nothing but great things about _The Death of Richie_, in which Benson plays the title role.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

_Five Star Final_ is a terrific pre-code scather starring Edward G. Robinson. it may not be directed by a great visual stylist, but journalism is a writers' medium.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Even if I can't ever see _The Day The Clown Cried_, how about a chance to hear Jerry Lewis and some other key collaborators (Harriet Andersson? Rune Ericson? Jean-Jacques Beiniex?) record a commentary track for it before it's too late?

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Even though it couldn't exist without the likes of _High Plains Drifter_, I gotta go with _Unforgiven_, easily the best Best Picture Oscar winner since Annie Hall.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Smith made a great, memorable baddie in _RoboCop_, but Dooley trumps that with his Altman connection. He played Wimpy, for crying out loud!

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

My current hunch: either _The Dark Knight_ or _The Curious Case of Benjamin Button_, but not both, will be nominated for Best Picture.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That I have opportunities to great films, and time to take advantage of those opportunities.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I submitted top ten distributed and top five undistributed lists to another website last week, but they hasn't been published yet. I'd better hold off on unveiling elsewhere. I will say that a film I mentioned as part of an answer to one of the previous questions was my #1.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Friends and family tend to avoid giving movie-related gifts. I always wonder if they'd feel like enablers if they did. So, my best gift was neutral-turned-movie-related: a frame to put my _Burden of Dreams_ poster, signed by Les Blank, into.

Brian said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically- Australia, which was kind of fun at times but pissed me off at the end.
On DVD- Immortal Beloved, because my wife had never seen it and I wanted to see it again. So-so movie with great subject matter.
Also just watched Lust, Caution with Netflix instant viewing, and that I enjoyed quite a bit.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty, I suppose. I don't tend to go in for holiday movies in particular, but I like most of my movies a bit on the naughty side.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino, for High Sierra, and for being versatile enough to direct as well as act.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Between season 1 and Fire Walk, I can't understand the appeal of that show. It seems no better than a goofy soap opera to me, and the goofiness doesn't outweigh the soap opera-iness. I guess I'd go with Big Ed for the show and Chester Desmond in the movie.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I'd prefer it if, instead of remaking beloved films or "righting wrongs," Hollywood focused on doing something new or different or experimental instead of trying to play it safe. I don't even think I need a Spartacus with "I don't know how I will ever be able to repay you" spoken by a talented actor.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Unfortunately, Original Kings of Comedy is all I know, but I'm very interested in several others.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney, just because.

8) Are most movies too long?

Depends entirely on the movie.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Laurence Olivier as Marcus Lucinius Crassus.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

If I created such a film, I wouldn't watch it. I'm more of a Nosferatu kind of guy.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

I didn't care for Jean Peters in Pickup on South Street and I haven't seen Sheree North in anything, so neither.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Um… because it's nice to see them more than once? Why would you ever not want or need to see a movie more than once?

13) Favorite road movie.

There's a very small-budget film called Riding Solo to the Top of the World about a fellow from Mumbai who travels on motorcycle along the highest traversable mountain pass in the Himalayas and it's wonderful from start to finish.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I have seen no films made by the gentleman in question.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Not really what you're going for here, but I'd say my appreciation for movies was most informed by watching Bergman, Greenaway, Kurosawa, etc., so they're my influences more than anyone else. Mostly I'd have to say I did it myself.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Monty Python and the Holy Grail is obviously great, but I also like the clay-ish blue soldiers at the opening of Julie Taymor's Titus. (About 2:30 on the following)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbpoG092YAQ

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

That Kenneth Tobey fellow's got himself one fine lookin' filmography.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Things don't work in such stark terms, Jean-Luc. The Godfather is a perfectly good, perfectly popular film. The Lord of the Rings was a perfectly bad, perfectly popular film. Breathless remains pretty popular, last I checked, as does Contempt to a somewhat lesser degree. "Popular" is easy to gauge, "good" is impossible to gauge. (This is partly why I'm sick of reading about how good or bad a movie The Dark Knight is. It's a film, it has filmic qualities, and they exist regardless of whether it's "good" or "bad." Talk about something more substantive, please.)

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Had I seen it, it would be Neil Young, Heart of Gold, but instead probably The Silence of the Lambs, even though I don't actually like it a whole lot. Philadelphia hasn't aged well, last I checked, though ten years ago that would have been my answer.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Something about the title of Bring Me the Head of Alfredo García strikes me, but in the spirit of irony I don't know how to define it.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

L'Enfer, with my favorite actress Emmanuelle Béart.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

It's only been released in Spain, to my knowledge, but Los girasoles ciegos got good press in Spain and I haven't heard a peep from it over here. Maybe if it gets a foreign language nomination.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

I don't think I'm enough of a teevee watcher to weigh in on this one.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Good Night and Good Luck was very enjoyable for me.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I used to go in for these all the time. Now, not so much. Maybe Dreyer doing the commentary for The Passion of Joan of Arc.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Unforgiven. Doesn't matter if it's the standard answer.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Once again, same as last year, I won't watch it.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That I enjoy Che.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I haven't seen 10 from this year, I'm sure, and looking back I didn't see a whole lot I enjoyed that much. The Dark Knight, Australia, Quantam of Solace, et al, were all a bit disappointing.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

I don't do presents (Buddhist), but I've spent most of my break watching movies with my wife, some we'd seen before, some entirely new to us, so that was a holiday-time movie-related experience I have enjoyed.

Robert Fiore said...

A number of these questions bunch together thematically for me, so bunch them I do, starting with a triple feature:

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?
8) Are most movies too long?

Theatrical: The last movie I saw theatrically was SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK, which I enjoyed but went on for about a half an hour after it made its point. As to whether most movies are too long, I am reminded of the exchange between the idealistic young communist and the old communist who’s just been bought off with a Coca Cola bottling franchise in ONE TWO THREE (quoted from memory): “Is everyone corrupt?” “I don’t know, I haven’t met everyone.” I haven’t seen most movies, but it does seem particularly strange that popcorn movies, which used to have a certain discipline for the sake of popcorn sales, have been allowed to get so flabby. Those PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN movies became excruciating. In the second one that whole cannibal island sequence could have been dropped to the benefit of all concerned, and I’m sure half the people who sat through the third one did so because they had so much time invested in the series. It seems though that everything done in a Jerry Bruckheimer movie is done on purpose, and he thinks it all contributes to the success of the movie. Since his movies keep making trunks of money there’s no reason for him to change his ways. One further thing I’d say about SYNECDOCHE is that if I were Joe Frank I’d be feeling plagiarized in spirit. I’ve never been that enthralled with Kaufman’s brand of trickiness, though I suppose at an earlier point in my life I’d have eaten it up.

DVD: My Christmas movies this year were THE THIN MAN and THE ICE HARVEST. THE THIN MAN is only tangentially Christmassy, but what a terrific picture. Harold Ramis is kind of a stealth auteur, and like GROUNDHOG DAY, THE ICE HARVEST is a picture that just seems to grow in at least my estimation. There are a handful of “nice” Christmas movies that really stick out – MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (only one Christmas scene, but it’s the emotional summation of the movie), IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (I’m one of the few people who haven’t seen it enough times to become mortally sick of it), the Alistair Sim version of A CHRISTMAS CAROL – but really, “nice” Christmas movies are about the most cynical thing Hollywood makes. I can’t believe one in ten of the people who make them really believe in what they’re doing. They all are required to have this moment where someone learns The True Meaning of Christmas, and it’s as if you know that somewhere lurking at the end of the picture there’s a horrible, ghastly murder and you’re not the sort of person who enjoys watching horrible, ghastly murders. Cynicism is a vice best practiced openly, and the comedy of avarice has become as integral a part of the season as babes in the manger. I vote naughty.

Blu-Ray: WALL-E. I let the movie’s flaws (sentimentality, superficiality of its approach to its theme) rule my reaction a bit when I saw it in the theater, but upon revisiting it what it does marvelously far outweighs its defects. I do have to point out that thematic incoherence is getting to be a hallmark of Pixar movies. By incoherence I mean taking positions contradictory to the way the makers and their audience actually live their lives. For instance, regarding WALL-E, do you have any idea how much fucking merchandise Pixar movies generate? If they were at all self-aware one of those mountains of trash would consist of CARS products. And speaking of CARS, are we really on any level embracing Radiator Springs values? Isn’t the computer, painstaking as it may be in its own right, a big step away from the painstaking process of hand-drawn animation? And it’s not just that RATATOUILLE contradicts the Brad Bird movie that came before it, it contradicts itself. How do you reconcile the “Anyone Can Cook” values espoused in the movie with the idea of the privilege of talent espoused elsewhere? The theme seems to be that the creative should not be subject to the judgment of mere mortals, whose attitude ought to be one of uncritical childlike wonder.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

It seems there’s a large substance gap in the careers of the first and second choices in both these comparisons. Out of the four I have the most feeling for Mercedes McCambridge, but really, is Mercedes McCambridge ever the main reason you see a movie? It’s more like, “Oh, Mercedes McCambridge is in it too,” isn’t it?

Per Linda Blair, I rather admire the performer who accepts that he or she has a trash career and commits to it on that basis, but I’m not one who fetishizes exploitation pictures.

4) Favorite actor/character from TWIN PEAKS

Miguel Ferrer/Albert Rosenfield, before the character wimped out and devolved into a noodle-brained mystic like everybody else. The character jumped his particular shark with a speech he gives about how he’s on the same mission as Gandhi and Martin Luther King. He was never the same man afterwards.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN was a great idea for a movie utterly botched by a vulgar and ignorant (not to say crooked) producer who assumed the audience was even more vulgar and ignorant than he was.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

SHE’S GOTTA HAVE IT, primarily because of Mars. DO THE RIGHT THING is obviously the one that holds together best as a movie. One of my imaginary revival house/museum series is The National Cinema of Manhattan. The conceit would be to treat movies primarily motivating from New York City as a national cinema with some similarity to Italy’s, i.e., gets off to a roaring start before a catastrophe of some kind from in the period 1914 to 1918 sends it off the rails, with only fitful activity until it revives in the wake of World War II and experiences a renaissance. You could run seminars along with it, possibly trying to maintain irony throughout. The most recent phase of the National Cinema of Manhattan is characterized by filmmakers whose ambition exceeds their talent. Woody Allen is Exhibit A naturally, but Spike Lee is B or C. I’m not even sure I’d exclude Scorsese, whose main talent seems to be for gangster movies more innovative in style than content (RAGING BULL comes out of a similar milieu, and TAXI DRIVER, well, that was an awfully long time ago).

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Not much to choose between, except that Tierney’s turn in RESERVOIR DOGS (the Blu-Ray of which is on sale for 11 bucks on Amazon as I write this, by the way) is the only thing from either career that sticks with me. Carol Hernandez, the wife of the cartoonist Gilbert Hernandez, used to talk about how Tierney would come to the midnight screenings of RESERVOIR DOGS at the New Beverly to hit on women (including her) and otherwise attempt to capitalize on what cache the film had granted him.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

THE TERMINATOR. It’s best performance by a real-life politician, right?

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

I was once at a sort of press conference thing given by Frank Zappa for college paper journalists. I ask him who he thought would win in a fight between King Kong and Godzilla. Zappa picked Godzilla and I asked why. “Taller,” he said.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Oh, I don’t know, you pick for me.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because you think you’d enjoy it more than once. Is this a trick question? I think Pauline Kael’s policy makes sense for a popular critic who watches and judges movies as the populace sees them. The one-shot perspective has its own value.

13) Favorite road movie.
16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS. If the question is which Bob Hope/Bing Crosby road movie, ROAD TO MOROCCO. If the opening song counts as part of the opening credit sequence, then ROAD TO MOROCCO would be my choice.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

CHEROKEE STATION.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Andrew Sarris’ THE AMERICAN CINEMA created a framework for looking at movies that shaped my point of view like no other, though Pauline Kael is the film critic I turn to most of all. That famous three-way critics feud of the 60s had one winner (Kael), one loser (Simon), and in Sarris a contestant who open strong but faded in the stretch.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

He’s full of shit, though there is a kind of popular movie that is usually bad. The greatest work of art is the one that can draw a significant audience while still being the best of its kind. The issue here is that

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Leaves me totally cold. SILENCE OF THE LAMBS is my least favorite. Like sitting in a pool of sewage for two hours.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

The ending of PLANET OF THE APES, though it might be more Alanis Morissette irony than dictionary definition irony. I’m sure that irony was what they thought they were engaging in.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

When I turn around to look at my blind spot Claude Chabrol is one of the things I see.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

THE DARK KNIGHT. Just kidding, but if we are to Take This Stuff Seriously, as nearly everyone seems to be doing with this picture, the point people are missing is that the whole rationale falls apart if Batman can’t maintain order. The overtly or covertly officially sanctioned vigilante doesn’t justify the corrosion to rule of law he represents if he does nothing but escalate the violence. The right wing commentators who interpreted this movie as a paean to the values of the Bush Administration were absolutely right. The theme seems to be better an honorable chaos than a dishonorable peace, and better to concoct a noble lie to fool the people than to seek consent that might not be given. The curious thing is that the general public swallowed the movie whole without allowing it to change their perception of the Bush Administration in the least. The convict throwing the bomb thingy off the boat was a nice touch, though.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Christopher was in DEADWOOD, which is a clincher for me.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Number one would be HIS GIRL FRIDAY, and I think the next couple would be versions of THE FRONT PAGE as well.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Orson Welles’ commentary on the fully restored MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS. Or Erich Von Stroheim on the restored GREED. I think I manage to spin one question per quiz into a wish for the great lost films. I think in general Orson Welles is the one person I’d most like to hear doing commentaries on his films.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

It’s a No Contest for UNFORGIVEN with me. A more interesting question is the second favorite. I would pick THE OUTLAW JOSIE WALES, which seems more like a samurai movie than a western. Unwillingness to face up to questions of race is a demerit. It’s an amazing coincidence that every western hero for the last 40 years has understood and sympathized with the Indians. As a director I find Eastwood a model of inconsistency.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Paul Dooley is great. Seemed to be lost in A MIGHTY WIND, though. You felt he was looking for someone to hand him his dialog, which he would have performed wonderfully.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

My prediction is that the Academy will come to the conclusion that if the awards continue to trend towards rewarding the critical concept of quality at the expense of movies the public responds most to the Oscars will lose their place in the public imagination, and they will take steps of some kind to remedy the situation.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That fewer movies I look forward to turn out to be crummy (BENJAMIN BUTTON appears to be the latest). That Frank Miller finds a religion that forbids representational art of all kinds.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I don’t think I see as many as ten new movies per year, at least in theaters.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

The only movie-related Christmas gift I received was the downsized bargain edition of THE STANLEY KUBRICK ARCHIVES. I regret somewhat that I missed out on the big honkin’ version, but as a practical matter I think the smaller one is about the largest size you could read comfortably.

L. Rob Hubb said...

Re: Holiday Movies... I meant THE ICE HARVEST, not THE ICE STORM.

My memory froze up with so much ice around, apparently.

Tommy said...

Put my answers up over on my site...

dave s said...

Q1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
A1) Theatre: The Curious Case of Benjamin Button; DVD: Count Yorga, Vampire.

Q2) Holiday movies — Do you like them naughty or nice?
A2) Both: I love Bad Santa, the Original Black Christmas, and Gremlins, plus the Joan Collins segment from the Tales from the Crypt movie. However, I also love It’s a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Story, A Charlie Brown Christmas, the animated How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Christmas Vacation, and Pee-Wee’s Playhouse Christmas Special. I guess the final tally is nice with a dose of naughty thrown in.

Q3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
A3) McCambridge has Pazuzu and Welles on her side, but Lupino is just so damn hard to beat, so Lupino by a Food of the Gods giant worm and her Noir pedigree.

Q4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
A4) Sherilyn Fenn. Ava Gardner enough to make a gay guy like me take note.

Q5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.
A4) Im stumped...

Q6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.
A6) Cliched as this answer might be, is there really any Spike Lee flick better, more challenging, entertaining, and perfect than “Do the Right Thing”?

Q7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
A7) Tierney by a Tarantino.

Q8) Are most movies too long?
A8) Yes.

Q9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
A9) I dunno, Anthony Hopkins in Nixon??? I haven’t seen W or Milk yet.

Q10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
A10) Rodan vs. Mothra: The Dogfight

Q11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
A11) Peters, because of what happened to her on South Street.

Q12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
A12) To discover new things about it, to learn something technical, to spend some more time with favourite characters, to re-experience a film, to show it to others and enjoy their reactions.

Q13) Favorite road movie.
A13) Two-Lane Blacktop.

Q14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
A14) I got nothin’. Sorry, Budd.

Q15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
A15) Famous: Alfred Hitchcock; Famous to Me: My father.

Q16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)
A16) I still love the Psycho credits (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3QcS2iovss), with Seven at #2.

Q17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
A17)Though a part of me really wanted to say Tobey, Damnit, I'll go with Agar.

Q18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.
A18) Though I think it’s silly to judge quality by popularity or lack thereof, Top Gun, Dances With Wolves, the Lethal Weapon movies, and Braveheart seem good support for Godard’s statement --- Like L7 say, “The Masses Are Asses”.

Q19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
A19) Another cliché: The Silence of the Lambs. It’s just so damn good.

Q20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
A20) Blair, not only for The Exorcist, but for her gusto and good humour in all those exploitation movies (TV included).

Q21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
A21) The Coen Brothers.

Q22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
A22) His Hitchcock book... seriously, I’ve never seen a Chabrol film.

Q23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
A23) I haven’t seen it yet...

Q24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
A24) Benson for indicating what being a teenager should before when I was a preteen.

Q25) Favorite movie about journalism.
A25) Sigh... His Girl Friday.

Q26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?
A26) Psycho with Hitchcock.

Q27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
A27) The Unforgiven, though I almost typed Play Misty for Me. I like Eastwood when he creates art by not trying to create art. Movies like Mystic River and Million Dollar Baby are painful in their pretention and unintentional humour.

Q28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?
A28) Smith by a Robocop.

Q29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.
A29) Mickey Rourke will get nominated for an Oscar; Tom Cruise won’t.

Q30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.
A30) That more low budget regional genre movies will start popping up at my multiplex.

Q31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)
A31) In no particular order and with the understanding that in the small Canadian province where I live, we don’t necessarily get everything until months later:
1. The Strangers
2. Rambo
3. Pineapple Express
4. Cloverfield
5. Quaranteen
6. Burn After Reading
7. Vicky Christina Barcelona
8. The Dark Knight
9. Iron Man
10. Stuck (released in ’07, but new to me in the theatre in ’08)

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

Q32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?
A33) Russ Meyer Cleavage Collection: Common-Law Cabin/Good Morning and Good-bye/Finders Keepers, Lovers Weepers.

dave s said...

Whoops...Q31, #5 should be "Quatantine" not "QuaranTEEN", though, i'd be interesting to see what John Hughes' could've done with that!!!

Krauthammer said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: Will Eisner's/ Frank Miller's The Spirit one of the strangest would-be blockbusters I've ever seen, if not the strangest. May be one of the worst movies ever made, or a masterpiece. I don't know. It was interesting.

On DVD: The Goddamn Batman movie. You know the one. Watching it the second time makes its strengths and flaws more obvious. Ledger's performance is as good as they say, but there are so many faults, structural thematic and stylistic (how many shots had Nolan circling the actors to create a false sense of excitement? 10? 20? All of them?) that I am still mixed.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I'm probably going to be in the minority here, but Nice. I'm fine with the occasional Bad Santa or Black Christmas, but c'mon guys, do we have to be cynical dicks all year round?

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

This is like asking Orson Welles vs. Paul Scofield. Their acting talents may be comparable, but Welles' work as a director is always going to be in the back of your mind.

Lupino.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I've never seen Twin Peaks. Sorry!

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I think we should start remaking movies just to screw with people now. Remake Kane as a musical, Plan 9 as a steamy romance, The Maltese Falcon as a sci-fi epic. I've long lost hope that any of Hollywood's remakes-even of mediocre films- will be any good, so I just want something that will make my jaw drop in horror.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do The Right Thing is a pretty perfect move, isn't it? There's so much anger and joy and sorrow in that movie, and Lee directs it beautifully. A close runner up would be She's Gotta Have It though, it has a real vitality to it.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

Aren't all movies too long in that they're not perfect? Only a perfect movie wouldn't have a second or two where time was wasted or it doesn't make the impact that it should. But I think recently Hollywood has begun to really fetishize bloat, no one seems to want to make shorter, more compact, films, let alone know how to make them.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

James Carville is surprisingly good as Governor Crittendon in The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

All the Draculas VS. All the Frankensteins! Should be a treat.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

?

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

There are like two hundred reasons but I'll give hte first few that pop into mind.

1. There's a certain comfort when you rewatch a film, you know the basic plot twists and are now able to submerge yourself in the movie without as much pressure.

2. You might see something, or many things, that you did not miss before. The way the lighting strikes the sets, how one supporting performance that is particuarly good, etc.

3. You're able to further understand your original reaction to the film, you get more specific on what did or did not work for you.

4. It's fun.

13) Favorite road movie.

Does The Grapes of Wrath count? I love The Grapes of Wrath


14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Alas, I have not seen a single Boetticher film, even though they are right up my alley. Up until now I've had a good excuse: basically none of them were on DVD. But with the boxset that came out recently, I'm sure that I'll get to them soon.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Probably my dad, who showed me Universal Classics and John Ford films and many others when I was in Elementary School during a weekly "movie night." And who has been absolutely indispensible when it comes to discussing movies in general.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I know that it's obvious, but how do you get better than Saul Bass' opening for Vertigo?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rkHn8PNGYaA

Mesmerizing.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Tobey!

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Oh Godard. I'm not sure if "cranky" is the the best way to put it, but he's wrong. Assuming that by "popular" he means money-making rather than just beloved, we can see on boxofficemojo's top 100 I see a list that wouldn't pass personal muster as a "all time greatest" but it looks like a lot of pretty good films, some clunkers and a couple of masterpieces. It's not great, but it's not atrocious at all.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Although Silence of the Lambs is amazing, I'll have to go with Something Wild which is just wonderful in ways that you couldn't imagine.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Haven't seen enough to give a well-judged answer.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Sirk

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

One of my biggest gaps, I'm afraid.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

If it did not get at least a little attention this year, I didn't see it.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

pass.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

It's gotta be Ace in the Hole

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I would love to hear Murnau do a commentary for any of his films really. He died far too young and left behind far too little commentary on his art.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Is there any answer other than Unforgiven?

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Pass

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Slumdog Millionaire will probably win best picture.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

They will be good in surprising ways.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I don't have enough to make a really good solid top ten list, but my top three are

1. Rachel Getting Married
2. Wall-E
3. Burn After Reading

with a The Spirit wild card, depending on how I think of it a week from now.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Two Criterions: Sancho The Bailiff and Schrader's Mishima. The best movie-related gifts are always movies.

Neil Sarver said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Slumdog Millionaire by Danny Boyle. Stuck by Stuart Gordon.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Like my ladies, both.

No, but seriously, this is like asking if I like my movies good or entertaining.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Jack Nance.

Or maybe Michael Anderson.

Or Sherilyn Fenn.

This is tough.

5) It's been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn't work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I've argued this myself, but I'm not sure I'm always entirely convinced.

But I like Shock Waves, but I imagine it could be improved on.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Malcolm X.

I need to remember that next time I get tempted to get excitable about how much I hate biopics and think every insufferable bastard who makes them should be garroted.

But I probably won't.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

Most movies I don't like are, but I'll agree the trend toward allowing directors (I'm looking at you Nolan and Apatow) not trim down to a better pace is troubling.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

I keep waiting for something obvious to pop into my head, but I seem to be blanking.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Godzilla vs. Cthulhu.

Yes, there is a Call of Cthulhu movie and everyone should make the effort to see it.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Sheree North.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Just one reason? Because one forgot the events seems the most obvious one, but my no means the only one.

13) Favorite road movie.

Highway 61.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

It seems I've not seen one.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Female Prisoner Scorpion: Beast Stable

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Kenneth Tobey.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I'm not sure being right in itself proves that he's not cranky or even just cranky.

I'd say the the more popular a movie is, the less likely it is that it's great. It's reasonably likely to be good, just not in a way that's worth examining further.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Melvin and Howard.

20) Tatum O'Neal or Linda Blair?

Linda Blair.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

A Clockwork Orange.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Madame Bovary.

That's not an overly informed opinion, however.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Well, Let the Right One In is the best movie I've seen this year, and its gotten some attention in some circles, but probably not enough.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

His Girl Friday.

26) What's the DVD commentary you'd most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Paul Bartel on Death Race 2000 would have been nice.

But most of all, John Huston for... anything. Obviously Treasure of Sierra Madre, The African Queen or The Dead would be amazing, but so would The Bible or Annie... or someone else's movie or anything at all involving listening to John Huston just talking.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Unforgiven.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith, but not without a certain reluctance.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

That I'll continue my recent streak of ignoring them.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Same hope as every year, hours of entertainment.

31) What's your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I have no list yet, and don't feel prepared to make one.

I think it's unlikely Let the Right One In will be knocked from the top spot, however. I also doubt Slumdog Millionaire or JCVD will be knocked off the list entirely.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Plush Jason Voorhees from Friday the 13th Part II.

Erin said...

Great quiz (as usual), I posted my answers here.

lucas mcnelly said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Last in theatres was "Synecdoche, New York", a very cool thing made even cooler by all the people I know who hate it for reasons they can't explain. On DVD...well...the next film I'll see is "Three Monkeys". I think the last was a bunch of South Park Christmas episodes. Do they count?

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Generally I don't like them at all, but if I must, I want them naughty. I want something to offset how nauseating the season can get.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Mercedes

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I've never seen an episode.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

So I'll ignore things that shouldn't have been made in the first place and think of a good idea that was badly executed....hmmm....(must resist urge to make fun of overrated director)...fuck it...."Boondock Saints".

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

While I can really respect "Do The Right Thing", I feel more of a connection to "25th Hour". Maybe it's because I'm white. "4 Little Girls" is pretty powerful, though.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Really? Dennis, these should be harder. Lawrence Tierney.

8) Are most movies too long?

Yes, because most movies aren't very good.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

I want to live in a world where Warren Beatty's "Bullworth" is a real politician. That's not the question? Well I don't care.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

I want to see Godzilla vs. the rabbit in Monty Python.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

I'll always vote for Kramer's mom.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

To remind you that things don't always have to be so shitty? I know a bottle of wine and an early Woody Allen film can make me feel better after a long day.

13) Favorite road movie.

Besides "Easy Rider"? I like "The Motorcycle Diaries" a great deal.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I think it would be "The Cimarron Kid", but I can't be sure I'm thinking of the right film.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

This isn't an accurate answer, but I'll throw it out there anyway: Charlie Rose. His interviews of actors and directors are some of the best, more informative around. I can't tell you how many times his interview has either gotten me to go see a film or re-think a film I've already seen.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I think the opening of "Adaptation" is pretty awesome.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OvyRKiCONmQ

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Tobey, I guess.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Well of course he's being cranky. That's what Godard does. But, as usual, he's right. Let's look randomly at 2005 Box Office totals. The "Star Wars" movie led the year with $380M, followed by the Narnia movie, Harry Potter, War of the Worlds, King Kong, Wedding Crashers, Charlie & the Chocolate Factory, Batman Begins, Madagascar, and Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Notice a theme? Right, these movies aren't very good. Then they're bad for a bit more. "The 40 Year-Old Virgin" is #19. "Brokeback Mountain" is #22. Then in the 80's we have "Good Night & Good Luck" (87), "A History of Violence" (88), and "Capote" (92). Or, if you want a shorter example, compare Oscar nominations to box office.

Or, let's say this: 50% of people are of below-average intelligence. A bigger number than that have no idea what good cinema is. So at what point do we think that something a lot of people like is going to be any good?

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

I think "Silence of the Lambs" was overrated and his "Manchurian Candidate" remake was awful, as was "The Truth About Charlie". So...um..."Philadelphia" wasn't too bad. I guess I need to go see "Rachel Getting Married".

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

So Tatum O'Neal was in that show "Wicked Wicked Games", and she was awful in it. I mean, really, really bad. But the whole show was really, really bad. However, if you got drunk and watched it, it became one of the funniest things ever (unless "Elimidate" was on), so her.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

On some of these things I just type the first thing I think of. Like this scene, maybe:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxerE5VMxbs

It might not be irony, but I don't care.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I should know this, but I'm drawing a blank.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I don't know that I can think of anything I've seen this year that was really good and isn't being discussed. Partly because I haven't been getting to the theatres enough and partly because there doesn't seem to be anything worth seeing.

However, I would like to see HBO's "The Life and Times of Tim" get a little more love. I think it's better than "Flight of the Concords".

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

I really like "All the President's Men"

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

You know, I almost never listen to those. I like the Roger Ebert ones, though. But here's a fantasy one I'd love: Hitchcock and Gus Van Sant discussing the "Psycho" remake.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Depending on my mood, it's either "Mystic River" or "Unforgiven".

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Oh this is a good one. As much as I love Kurtwood Smith in "That 70's Show", Paul Dooley's pretty awesome, and he gets a boost for "Curb Your Enthusiasm"

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

"The Dark Knight" doesn't get a Best Picture nod. The major news outlets report this as a shocking snub. AICN freaks the fuck out. People with a clue shrug. Lost in all this is a deserving Best Picture nod for "Wall-E", making me very happy. It of course then loses to something that shouldn't have even been in consideration, annoying me all over again.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That they'll be better. And that I'll finish mine.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I haven't seen 10 films this year worth putting on a list.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

I got a pretty nice Criterion Collection coffee mug.

Weigard said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
Theater: Burn After Reading. I’m a big Coen fan, and enjoyed it enough, although for one of their films I felt a little disappointed – it just didn’t seem to hold together as well as most of their films.

DVD: There Will Be Blood. Just a little Christmas treat. : ) I’ve got to say I was disappointed. It’s ambitious, and there’s some great stuff in it, but the acting kept jolting me out of the picture, although not so much as the music – I thought it was one of the worst scores, with some of the worst choices for other music, that I’ve heard in a long time. And a good candidate for a film that’s too long as well!

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?
Of the two, I’d lean a little more toward nice, but the option I’d vote for is real – something that captures a bit of what the Christmas experience is like. Is there any holiday film as real (or as good) as the first 28 minutes of A Charlie Brown Christmas? (Dancing beagles notwithstanding.) I guess the ending is a little “nicer” than I’d like.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
I’ll go with Ida for the main role I remember her in – Hope Harcourt in Anything Goes.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
I didn’t really watch the show, so I’ll go with an actor I like in Billy Zane.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.
The Stupids. I feel certain that with an improved script, better actors and stronger direction, it could be a great film!

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.
Do the Right Thing

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
Can’t place Brady, so Tierney by default.

8) Are most movies too long?
No, not really. Movies I’ve watched and liked on DVD and then went into the “deleted scenes” on nearly always provide things I wish they had left in. Bad movies I’ve seen often do too! I think maybe the problem is that a lot more “long stories” are filmed these days, by the big studios anyway. Epic tales that need a lot of time to give the story the space and gravitas it needs. The small story with a lean script seems to have become the province of the indie.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
It’s a small part, and pretty much one note, but I really like Donald Moffat as LBJ in The Right Stuff.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
The Phantom of the Opera vs. The Elephant Man. I envision cultural sparring along the lines of “My Dinner with Andre”.
OK, for a real smackdown, how about Godzilla vs. Stephen Seagal? Oh please oh please oh please

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
Pass the shroud.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
In honor of awards season, my top 10:
10. Because the lighting was kind of dark and you’re not sure what you saw (The X Files: I Want to Believe)
9. Because the Director’s Cut has to be better than what you saw in the theater (Blade Runner)
8. Because you’re sure that twist at the end must have contradicted a whole lot of plot points (The Sixth Sense).
7. Because Cate Blanchett is in it. (The Talented Mr. Ripley)
6. Because actors you hadn’t heard of at the time are in it and you want to see it again with historically-informed eyes. (The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert).
5. Because you have the uncanny ability to laugh at the same thing twice (or 3x, or 4x, …) (The Big Lebowski).
4. Because there isn’t a single new movie in town that you want to see (February, March)
3. Because a change of venue can make such a difference (fancy old movie house, drive-in, super stereo surround in the living room).
2. Because you can’t process it all on the first go-around (Mulholland Dr.).
1. Because the film resonates with you. You can see it again and see the same story, and yet it feels different and the same all at once. Some things you’re sure weren’t there before, and some things you think are missing. A great movie feels a little different every time. (The Third Man)

13) Favorite road movie.
The African Queen. Road movie with leeches!

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
Still shrouded.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
My main music teacher in college, Sally Maxwell. She’d always have us up to her house for movie nights, and that’s where I learned about Hitchcock and classic movies, and learned that art movies aren’t always boring (especially if you take a second and think about it).

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)
Anatomy of a Murder has been mentioned already, as has Monty Python and the Holy Grail. So I’ll pick one that’s brilliant in its simplicity: My Fair Lady. All you really need are some flowers and great music!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g5yqAWq1qts

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
Embroidering my initials into the shroud.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.
Well, it does seem to me that “the masses” prefer a movie that can be comprehended very satisfactorily in one viewing – and that would tend to omit a lot of great “multilayered” films. But there are plenty that start off good and just get better the more you see them.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
I’d have to go with The Silence of the Lambs too.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
I guess it’s “Goldilocks” – Tatum O’Neal.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
“Leads, yeah, sure. I'll just check with the boys down at the crime lab, they've got four more detectives working on the case. They got us working in shifts!” (The Big Lebowski)

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
He was a technical advisor on Breathless -- I’ve seen that one! (I pull the shroud down a little tighter.)

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
There are SOOO many I haven’t seen, but just recently saw The X Files: I Want to Believe and I’m quite puzzled that this didn’t catch on at least with people who loved the TV show. Creepy, suspenseful, thought-provoking – and I might nominate it for best closing credits.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
Breaking Away and Chariots of Fire give the edge to Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.
All the President’s Men

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?
I’d like to hear what Orson Welles would come up with to add to F for Fake.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
It’s been a while, but I was really fascinated with Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil -- didn’t even remember that was Eastwood.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?
I’ve liked Paul Dooley in a lot of things, plus he was in a movie called Rennie’s Landing! Wait, Kurtwood Smith was in Prefontaine … no, that’s the one that was filmed in Seattle. Dooley it is!

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.
Based less on quality than on fear of fans’ revenge, The Dark Knight will be nominated for Best Picture.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.
I made it to 4 movies in the theater this year – I’d like 4 really good movies to see next year.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)
I’ve seen six. So, here’s my top 6:
1. The X Files: I Want to Believe
2. The Bank Job
3. The Dark Knight
4. Iron Man
5. Burn After Reading
6. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):
32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

I guess the only thing was a DVD of a live performance by John Mayer – don’t know how interesting it is cinematically, but the music’s good!

bill r. said...

1)What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

The last movie I saw theatrically is still “Burn After Reading”, which was so long ago that it has since come out on DVD, I’ve bought it, and watched it again. And it’s still a great movie. (I did come very close to seeing “Doubt” the other day, if that counts for anything).

On DVD, the last movie I saw was, unfortunately, “Hancock”. Despite two scenes that I can only describe as unforgivably stupid, the first half wasn’t too bad. There was potential there. Then the second half happened and ruined everything I’d liked up to that point.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Oh, I don’t know. Bob Clark made the best Christmas double feature out there, with “A Christmas Story” and “Black Christmas”, so I guess, in a roundabout way, that’s my answer.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Um…Lupino’s what I’m supposed to say, but she wasn’t Pazuzu.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Probably Ray Wise.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

They should remake “The Village”, and this time the weird porcupine monsters should be real. I would really like to see what that movie would have been like.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Eesh, I’m not really a fan. “Malcolm X” is probably his best film, though, while “Summer of Sam” is probably the one I’ll watch the most often, over the years, for all its problems.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney.

8) Are most movies too long?

I don’t think so. Bad movies are too long, good movies are too short, and that whole thing.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

They’re not usually that good, are they? Even though I’m not really a fan of the movie, I’ll say Philip Baker Hall in “Secret Honor”, more for being Philip Baker Hall than anything else.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

The Kraken from “Clash of the Titans” vs. the giant yeti from that Canadian yeti movie I saw that one time.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because I really liked it a whole bunch. I mean, if you liked a movie, or even if you just found it interesting, why wouldn't you want to watch it again? Maybe I don't understand the question.

13) Favorite road movie.

I’m not a big “road movie” guy, but I did really like “Two-Lane Blacktop” when I saw it a few months ago.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

“The Tall T”. Henry Silva and Richard Boone are terrific in that one.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

I don’t really know. Glenn Kenny has done a lot in that regard, and so has Roger Ebert. But early on, my brother Pat probably got me to watch more good, old movies than anybody else.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Every quiz, you ask a question that I should have a good, fast answer for, but when I read said question, my mind freezes up. For this quiz, this is that question. I love a good opening credit sequence, and I know that somewhere in my brain is a whole list to choose from, but guess what the best answer I’ve been able to come up with is? “Pulp Fiction”. And even with that one, the best part is the freeze frame, and then the opening of “Misirlou”, not the whole credits sequence. I know “Pulp Fiction” is not my favorite, but that’s all I can offer you. I don’t really need to offer a YouTube link to that one, do I?

This question is the main reason I’ve taken so long to take this quiz, by the way.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Tobey, for “The Thing”.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

He’s being a cranky douchebag, which I think is the literal English translation of “Godard”.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

“The Silence of the Lambs”. Isn’t that a boring choice? To make up for that, I will say that I think “Beloved” is underrated.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Blair.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Probably the ending of “Homicide”, which I won’t describe here…

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I haven’t seen many, but I liked “This Man Must Die”.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I think “Burn After Reading” is very underrated. I know people like it, but not enough do, and even they don’t like it as much as they should.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher, for “Breaking Away”.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

The early scenes of the investigation in “All the President’s Men” are pretty hard to top.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Any old (old meaning from, say, the 1930s to the 1970s) horror movie that doesn’t already have one. And I’d want anybody other than Roger Corman to be on it, because his are boring. But, say, “Theater of Blood” would be a good one, with Diana Rigg, Doulgas Hickox, Anthony Greville-Bell, and anyone else from the cast who is alive and game.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

“Unforgiven”. Another boring choice, but I don’t care. That’s his masterpiece.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Dooley, in a walk. “Just because I don’t know what it means, doesn’t mean I’m lying.”

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

I predict that there will be many winners. Also, that we will all bitch about their irrelevance, while watching them.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That “Shutter Island” is great. I’m really looking forward to that one.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I haven’t seen nearly enough new movies to make a really good list. But “The Dark Knight” is number one or two. Yeah, that’s right, you heard me.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

I made out like a bandit this year. My brother bought me the Criterion editions of “The Virgin Spring” and “High and Low”, and my wife got me the Universal Legacy collections of “The Mummy” and “The Wolf Man”. And for my birthday, which was on the 21st, my wife got me the Anchor Bay Herzog boxset, the non-Kinski one (she got me the Kinski one for our anniversary).

Schuyler Chapman said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Last in the theaters was "Milk," and on DVD it was, I think, "Love in the Afternoon."

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I like them not at all.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino is without question one of my greatest obsessions, so obviously her.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Russ Tamblyn as Dr. Jacoby is probably my favorite, but, I mean, this isn't a particularly fair question.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Well, I don't think it's a horrible movie, not even by a long shot, but "Frailty" has so much potential to be great and it doesn't quite get there. Also, I really like "Lifeforce" (the John Carpenter alien-vampire movie), but I secretly know that it was not executed as well as it might have been.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Well, it's not terribly original, but "Do the Right Thing" is probably my favorite American film of the 1980s, so that's probably gotta be my fave joint. However, I will defend, to my last breath, "Crooklyn," "Clockers," and "Get on the Bus" as well. Also, "When the Levees Broke" and "4 Little Girls" are amazing. And "Bamboozled" is really not as bad as everyone said. ("Girl 6" however is exactly as bad as everyone said.)

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

Nah. I like long movies. Unless they suck. There is nothing worse than a long, cruddy movie. (I'm looking at you "Titanic.")

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Anthony Hopkins in "Nixon" was fantastic. I'll go with that for now.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Uhhhh... let's go with my two favorite Godzilla foes: King Ghidorah vs. the Smog Monster.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters, natch.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Certain movies come along at a perfect moment in your life and become inextricably linked to those moments. To return to those movies sometimes returns to a those moments in more tangible ways than just thinking about the moments. At least that's how it works for me.

13) Favorite road movie.

"Two Lane Blacktop"

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Again, I gotta go with the obvious (but it's my favorite!) "Seven Men from Now."

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Well, I think that my cinephilia began in earnest around the age of 14 which corresponds, more or less, to the moment my family got the Internet and I began reading, religiously, the reviews of Roger Ebert. Even if my taste has in large part diverged from his in the past five or six years, I still owe my appreciation of film to him, on some level.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Can't find it but the answer is "Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?"

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Well, I recognize Tobey's picture, so I'll go with him.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Can he be both right and cranky? There are times when a film is both good and popular ("Jaws" for instance). But for every "Jaws" you get five "Forrest Gumps." So while it's foolish to find an exact correlation between popularity and quality, there is often a correlation. But it's an arbitrary correlation, I would argue, that we see and that might not actually exist.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Something Wild," "Stop Making Sense," or "Beloved"--not sure I can pick between those three. Most assuredly, however, it is not "Philadelphia."

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

"Body Double"

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I've only seen "Le Boucher" and I liked it a lot, so that's going to be it.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I don't get to the theaters enough anymore to actually answer this question.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher because I don't know Robby Benson.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"Shattered Glass" (It's good! I swear! Even Hayden Christensen!)

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I'd love a "commentary" track on "Mulholland Dr." I would want Mr. Lynch to provide the commentary. I would not, however, want the commentary to be related in anyway to the film.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"A Perfect World"

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

I love them both but I need to give Kurtwood the edge for his performance in "Robocop."

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Gus Van Sant will again be nominated for one his most banal directorial efforts.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

I hope that foreign films continue to have a strong presence in American theaters (at least art house theaters).

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Ask me in June when I'll have seen most of what I need to have seen to make this decision.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Sniff ... I didn't get any ... sniff.

bill r. said...

Shoot. Shattered Glass should have been my pick for "Favorite Movie About Journalism". Schuyler's right, it is really good.

R Meyers obildade avkomma said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Last film theatrically: Quantum of Solace. On DVD: Ang Lee's Sense and Sensibility.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

If I as a european think it's nice, you as an american probably think it's naughty and vice versa

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino.
It's such a lovely name.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Loglady


5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Plan 9 from Outer Space

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do the Right Thing

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney.
I love Chris Penn's story of his encounter with him.

8) Are most movies too long?

Everybody remembers The Dark Knight and believes the length was the problem. I wasn't. It was a shitty movie.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Harvey Keitel as Tom Paine in La Nuit de Varennes.

John Houseman would have expelled me for copying that answer from a fellow student.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Boris Karloff vs. Elsa Lanchester

They were brilliant together...

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

A movie is a love affair not a one night stand.

13) Favorite road movie.

Stephen Frear's The Hit (1984)

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Pam Grier in Foxy Brown

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M_Vb5CKPJqs&feature=related

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Man, JLG is ALWAYS right!

Godard's "Hélas pour moi" (1993) should have pulled in 560 000 000 dollars and The Dark Knight (2008) should have pulled in whatever "Hélas pour moi" pulled in.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Silence of the Lambs"

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Pale Rider

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Michael Caine accepts the Oscar on behalf of a dead colleague...

I hope that clairevoyant moment was as fake as Ledgers performance.

Happy New Year from Sweden

weepingsam said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

This is a moving target, since I take so long to answer these quizzes: but I'll say -
Theater - The Wrestler
DVD - Meet Me In St. Louis

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Mostly nice, though naughty is nice too.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I can't answer this. I haven't watched it since it first came on, and only watched part of the first season then. I have been waiting for all of it to be on DVD, though not paying close enough attention. Maybe next year I'll be able to answer.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

This is a very interesting question, and one I am sure I have opinions on, though I fear they aren't coming now. I have always thought that Eyes Wide Shut should have been made by David Lynch, though - that might count.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do The Right Thing

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence, I think.

8) Are most movies too long?

The good ones aren't - being too long is one of the main causes of films failing, though. Way too many comedies just keep going... a lot of films aren't so much too long as they run out of ideas around the hour mark - or cut over to the PLOT, which is trite and dull. They aren't so much too long as they have nowhere to go after the first 2/3 or so. (This is what happened to the Wrestler, I thought - it had to bring about the predetermined ending, and started contriving things around the 2/3 mark to make it happen.)

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

If Malcolm X counts, than Denzel Washington's performance has to rate highly here. A dark horse would be Baek Yun-shik as the assassin in the Korean film about Park Chung-hee's assasination, The President's Last Bang. Song Jae-ho as the president is quite good also.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

The Abominable Snowman vs. Burgermeister Meisterburger! Dr. Hill (Reanimator) vs. Dr. Pretorius (Fron Beyond)! And in the finale - Asia the Invincible vs. the Bride of Frankenstein!

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

To memorize it.

13) Favorite road movie.

Pierrot le Fou, I'd say.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Seven Men From Now... Lee Marvin. Pow. Though it's hard to chose this over the Tall T.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

This is a hard one to answer. Maybe Robert Altman, as his films probably did the most to make a cinephile of me. An Altman retrospective marked a clear change in the way I saw, thought about, attended, films...

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I should be able to come up with something off the top of my head, but I never can. It's not impossible that it's Imamura's The Pornographers - the fake porn, the fish... it's also not impossible it's Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail - Swedish llama jokes never get old.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

I might skip this one.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

There seems to be a relationship. The relationship is certainly not inverse, though. I don't know what he means by "popular" - does a box office failure that becomes widely adored (It's a Wonderful Life, say) count? The best movies tend to be modest successes, and often become immensely popular over time. So - he's being clever, and getting at a legitimate point, but it doesn't hold up to scrutiny...

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Something Wild.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal, I think.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Another good question. I'll pick a film I've seen recently - Oshima's Pleasures of the Flesh. Oshima lays it on very thick here: there's a student in love with a schoolgirl he tutors; he finds out she was raped as a child - her parents hire him to kill the rapist and he does. However, a crooked official saw him do the deed - and shows up with 30 million Yen (of the 00 million he stole), telling the student to hide it until he gets out of prison - if the money disappears, he will rat out the kid's murder. The student hides it - until the girl marries another man: nothing to live for! He will spend it all and kill himself! he does, spending it all on whores and bad living, though without much success. As we come to the end of the year before the crook gets out of jail, the student ends up with a mute whore and befriends her pimp boyfriend - who tells him about a guy he knew in jail who hid 30 million dollars with a student, but died before he could be released....

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Haven't seen enough - but Les Cousins, probably, among the ones I have seen.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I think Momma's Man faded into obscurity rather more quickly than it deserved. And Ballast, though it gets a fair amount of attention, sometimes seems to be treated as if it were just another indie film. But other indie films (like The Wrestler) keep showing just how unusual it really is - it actually managed to surprise me...

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

I can't say that I care right now.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

His Girl Friday.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Others have mentioned Sam Fuller - absolutely. I can't think of anyone who could have done better commentaries. For anyone's films! He'd be better than Werner Herzog, and that is going a long way. I wish David Lynch did commentaries - he's another endlessly interesting talker...

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

A good question - High Plains Drifter? or Bird? I think if you treated Flags of our Fathers and Sands of Iwo Jima as one film, that might do it.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

I won't watch it?

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

I just hope a bunch of good foreign films get released - starting with The Headless Woman, Tokyo Sonata, and Secret Sunshine.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I'm not quite ready to answer, but a rather un-thought-out list might go:

The Headless Woman (though it hasn't been released,and I ca't say I'm optimistic.)
Christmas Tale
My Winnipeg
Encounters at the End of the World
Man on Wire
Ballast
Burn After Reading
Momma's Man
Rachel Getting Married
Happy Go Lucky
Speed Racer

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Nothing specific - though I got a neat monkey grip for a camera. That should come in handy.

Steven Santos said...

I love doing the quizzes, so it's my pleasure to participate for the third time.

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrical - "Let The Right One In"

Is there a reason this movie has gotten such a horrible release? I held my nose and finally saw it at the Angelika in New York a couple of days ago and thought the movie was fantastic.

DVD - "John Carpenter's The Thing"

This movie keeps getting better and better with each viewing. One of the few genuinely great horror movies ever made.

Streaming - "The Times of Harvey Milk" on Hulu

You should probably add the streaming option the next time you ask this question. Very good documentary. But, much like the recent biopic, I feel they gloss over Milk's life before he turned 40.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty. I'm just not a holiday person. Something like "Bad Santa" represents what the Christmas spirit has turned into.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Not familiar enough with either. I only remember from McCambridge in "Touch of Evil".

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

The Horne Brothers. Ben and Jerry. When Leland Palmer came into their office singing "Mairzy Doats" and they respond by dancing (complete with Jerry doing the Worm!), it was one of the funniest things I have ever seen on television.

Here it is for your viewing pleasure (1:28 into clip):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohV3_9mgNGY

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Personally, I am becoming more and more tired of remakes particularly now that they're remaking movies from just 15 years ago like "Bad Lieutenant". That said, I'll entertain the question anyway. My choice would be a beloved, respected film to many: "King Kong". There's something good in that story, but all three versions swing and miss on various levels.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"Do the Right Thing". It's the most obvious choice, but he hasn't made anything since that touches it.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney for saying the line "Hey, no one's tradin' with anybody. This ain't a fuckin' goddamned City Council meeting."

8) Are most movies too long?

Speaking as an editor, yes. And it doesn't matter if they're 90 minutes or 3 hours long. The culprit? The need to over-explain every single damned plot point via endless exposition, mostly found in supposedly visually-driven Hollywood blockbusters. We should be thankful the Coen brothers continually demonstrate how to make lean movies that rarely overstay their welcome and employ dialogue for character and not explanation.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Paul Giamatti as John Adams.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

King Kong vs. Godzilla. Isn't it time for a rematch?

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Not familiar enough with either.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because the great ones reward you by allowing you to find something new with each viewing. The movies that don't stand the test of time are generally good for one viewing only.

13) Favorite road movie.

"The Last Detail". This is the movie I never see on any greatest movies of all time list that belongs there. Still Hal Ashby's best movie, in my opinion.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Never seen any of his pictures.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Gene Siskel & Roger Ebert. I don't think I would have seen lesser-known movies or appreciated great directors without them. Other critics can slag them for supposedly diminishing the art of film criticism on their television show. But their open-mindedness showed a true love of all cinema and encouraged a genuine discussion about movies that is sadly missing today.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Once Upon A Time in the West

http://www.artofthetitle.com/media/film/60s/Once_Upon_a_Time_in_the_West.mov

Watching it again, I realize the title doesn't actually appear until the end of the movie.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Looking at their IMDB listings, I've seen a 2 or 3 movies of each, but couldn't tell you who they were.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Well, Godard's movies aren't popular, but are celebrated by the critical establishment. Yet, I think very little of him as a filmmaker. Godard's playing the consensus game which is what some critics have been doing a lot the past year by claiming a certain moviegoer and critical consensus opinion on a movie (facts be damned) and then trying to tear it down with as shallow an argument as the critics who built up the movie in the first place. Or vice versa. Just because someone has the alternative opinion regarding a movie doesn't make it any less shallow than the alleged consensus.

It's getting tiresome and creates this atmosphere where opinions on movies go through phases of backlashes and counter-backlashes that have little to do with genuine discussion about the movies themselves and more about people aligning themselves with one group-think mentality over another. My response to this is why the hell are we listening to Godard anyway unless we want advice on how to make half-baked movies posing as serious art? And, generally, someone who makes such a dogmatic statement about movies displays a staggering amount of ignorance as well as an inability to present a nuanced argument. Nor does it seem they are capable of responding to a movie with a unique perspective or genuine emotion regardless of who agrees or disagrees with them.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Stop Making Sense". Still the best concert movie ever made.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Considering their subsequent non-existent careers, this amounts to O'Neal's performance in "Paper Moon" compared to Blair's performance in "The Exorcist". O'Neal wins this one easily.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

"Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance". The entire film. I'd rather you see it than try to explain it myself.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Haven't seen any of his films.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

"Mad Detective", which is "A Beautiful Mind" for lovers of Hong Kong cinema, minus the Ron Howardian sentimental nonsense.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher, easily.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"All the President's Men". It's like a time capsule to a time when journalists actually fact-checked and sourced information before printing it!

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

The entire casts for "Nashville" and "Short Cuts", which wouldn't be much different from the films themselves, as we change perspectives from one person to another.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"Unforgiven". After that: "Bird", "A Perfect World", "Million Dollar Baby" and "Letters from Iwo Jima".

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Sight margin to Kurtwood Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" will win Best Picture and Best Director, continuing the Academy Award streak of rewarding great directors for making one of their lesser works that appeal to the conservative streaks of their voters.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

My greatest hope is that movies start taking more chances. Please. Otherwise, the rising ticket prices and the increasingly annoying moviegoers are going to convince me to invest in a HD display and wait a short 3-4 months for movies to hit DVD.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

There are still 3 movies I'd like to see in the coming weeks: "I've Loved You So Long", "Wendy & Lucy", & "Revolutionary Road", as well as others that I'll know I'll catch up with on DVD or cable over the next year. That said, here is what my list would be so far:

1. The Dark Knight
2. Wall*E
3. The Wrestler
4. In Bruges
5. Let the Right One In
6. Slumdog Millionaire
7. Mad Detective
8. A Christmas Tale
9. Burn After Reading
10. Snow Angels

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Various DVDs. Nothing special. Just some terrific movies.

Andrew said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: "Let the Right One In"
Blu-ray: "WALL•E"

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Both. Which is why "It's a Wonderful Life" is such a grand holiday film: It hits the despair and the warmth.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

I should pass, but I'll go with McCambridge because her vocal work in "The Exorcist" haunts me to this day.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

My loins say Sherilyn Fenn as Audrey Horne, but I have to go with Richard Beymer as Ben Horne. One of the funniest and most fascinating characters in the series.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I would prefer Hollywood nurture some *original* films, but the apparently atrocious remake of "The Day the Earth Stood Still" has me wondering if one of Burt I. Gordon's ponderous, self-important slabs of science fiction schlock could be given a new life by a worthy auteur. Perhaps "The Amazing Colossal Man," "The Beginning of the End," or "It Conquered the World"?

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"Do The Right Thing".

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney.

8) Are most movies too long?

"Most" movies? Probably. Good movies? No.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

I don't have a favorite, but I'm recenty taken with Sean Penn as Harvey Milk in "Milk." It's a stellar performance in a thoroughly middling biopic.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Disturbing Bris Re-Enactment: the phallic Ebolisk (of "Willow") vs. the blade-headed Guiron (of "Gamera vs. Guiron")

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Pass.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Most great films get better or reveal more on repeat viewings.

13) Favorite road movie.

"Planes, Trains, and Automobiles"

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Pass.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Roger Ebert, first for his television appearances, which introduced me to this thing called a "professional film critic," then for his writings.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Very difficult to choose a "favorite". I'll go with "Zodiac" because it still sticks out in my mind as one of the best from 2007.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Agar.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Cranky and also probably right, at least statistically speaking. However, this year gave us the rejoinders to this theory: "The Dark Knight" and "WALL•E" were both very popular and also among the best films of 2008.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Silence of the Lambs"

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Blair.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Again, I'm having a hard time picking a favorite, so I'll go with a quality recent example: the climax of "The Oprhanage".

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Pass. I've only seen his latest, "A Girl Cut in Two" and was underwhelmed.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Toss-up between Yang Li's "Blind Mountain" and Aditya Assarat's "Wonderful Town".

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"The Insider"

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Jean Renoir and his lead actors (Nora Gregor, Roland Toutain, Marcel Dalio) commenting on "The Rules of the Game".

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"Unforgiven"

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Meryl Streep for Best Actress, proving to Juliette Binoche and Sally Hawkins that God is not just.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That "Watchmen" not suck.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Couldn't narrow it down to ten, so I went with thirteen: "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days," "The Class," "The Dark Knight," "The Edge of Heaven," "Encounters at the End of the World," "The Fall," "Paranoid Park," "Standard Operating Procedure," "Stranded," "Synecdoche, New York," "Trouble the Water," "WALL•E," and "Wendy and Lucy".

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

The only film-related gift I received: "Kung-Fu Panda" on DVD from my mother-in-la

Sharon said...

This is what I have thus far. Hopefully, I'll post the rest over the weekend.

1)What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: Day the Earth Stood Still

DVD: Tropic Thunder (Get some!)

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Nice, please.


4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Didn’t watch, so I got nothin’.


6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Inside Man. I think it's his most enjoyable and accessible film.

8) Are most movies too long?

If it’s a bad one (I’m looking at you, Day the Earth Stood Still!), yes. If it’s a good one, it can’t be long enough.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Not a fan of the monster genre, so I'll pass on this one too.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

To re-experience the immersion into that world. Unfortunately, I don't seem to have the time I used to have available to re-watch movies and television shows.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Cranky, of course. By 'good,' I'm taking that to mean critically acclaimed. It seems that most critics (our favorite movie blogger is happily one of the execptions) find it beneath them to write nice things about popular movies. They tend to reserve those accolades for bloated yawnfests like There Will Be Blood. Whatever.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Directed by? I guess I'll go with Silence of the Lambs

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

I think I'll go with Linda.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Gotta go with Robby and his baby blues.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

All the President’s Men wins for me hands down, but Absence of Malice is right up there too.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Bridges of Madison County, thank in large part to the sublime Meryl Streep.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

In the continuance of a trend that’s developed over the last decade or so, the Academy will eschew ‘popular’ movies and bestow honors upon less accessible and, frankly, not-so-good movies. In a perfect world, Iron Man would be nominated for best picture, but that's as likely as Geroge W. Bush behing held accountable for his many crimes.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?


My sister gave me a book called 501 Must See Movies. I'm in the process of going through the index to pick out the ones I've already seen so that I can begin to Netflix the others that interest me or that I think I 'should' see.

Bemis said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray? Theatrically, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - schmaltzy, but well-crafted and heartfelt enough that I didn't mind. On DVD, the original My Bloody Valentine (pretty soon, every mention of an '80s horror movie will be preceded by "the original").

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

At least a little bit naughty. For instance, my favorite Scrooge (one I've watched every December since I was a tot) is the 1970 version with Albert Finney. It features decaying ghouls and a tour of hell along with the obligatory jolly, dancing British people - a good reminder that Dickens' story, and the holiday, are as much about religious guilt and keeping our wintry demons at bay as they are about tinsel and elves.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

My first thought was Audrey Horne swaying to Angelo Badalamenti's "dreamy" music at the Double R Diner. But The Little Man From Another Planet also deserves mention.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Kindergarten Cop. Great premise, bland execution. I'd love to see what Terry Zwigoff would do with it.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do the Right Thing

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

"Why am I Mr. Pink?"

"Because you're a faggot, alright?"

8) Are most movies too long?

I'm much more likely to criticize a movie for being too rushed. I rarely understand the "too long" complaint - to paraphrase The Age of Innocence, it seems like people are faster to leave a movie than to go to one.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Fred Willard as Ron Alberston as President McKinley.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Brundlefly vs. Blairmonster: Requiem. Christmas 2010.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Sheree North

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

The movie stays the same, but I change. Plus, I like movies.

13) Favorite road movie.

Badlands

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Alas, I haven't seen any.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My mom, who encouraged my early interest in film by sharing her favorite movies, discussing them with me and encouraging me to form my own opinions and preferences.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Vertigo. Can't beat Saul Bass.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pz46qS38OgM

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Kenneth Tobey

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Godard is wrong about a lot of things. Some great movies are inherently divisive, while others touch a collective nerve. The best evidence I can think of is E.T.'s premiere at Cannes, where it recieved rapturous applause from the toughest possible audience.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

The Silence of the Lambs

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

I really like one performance of theirs apiece, so on that basis...Linda Blair.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Haven Hamilton singing "200 Years" in Nashville. Actually, all of Nashville. Actually, Altman's entire body of work.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Never seen any Chabrol either. Couldn't you have asked for my favorite Renny Harlin?

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

When I caught up with Snow Angels this fall, I was surprised to find that it's subtler and more moving than its mixed reviews would suggest, with a strong central performance by Sam Rockwell. While it's more conventional than Green's previous work, the bittersweet contrast of the idealism of young love and a marriage gone tragically awry rang true to me. Pineapple Express was good for a laugh, but this is the best DGG movie of the year.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Christopher, for his performance as Eddie Kaspbrak in the miniseries adaptation of It.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Zodiac

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

The conversation between Werner Herzog and Crispin Glover on Even Dwarfs Started Small is pretty great. I'd love to hear Herzog interview Glover on What Is It? (actually, I'd just like to finally see What Is It?).

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Unforgiven

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

A few years ago, my wife recognized Kurtwood Smith walking by, and he responded by kissing her on the cheek. So I'll go with Dooley, for not being a homewrecker.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Heath Ledger will win the 2009 "Montage of the Dead" applause contest.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That, after a so-so 2008, a year that brings new Scorsese, Malick and Tarantino lives up to its potential.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I'm going to have to ask for an extension on this one, Professor - limited release strategies prevent me once again from catching some of the highest-profile winter releases until mid-January. So far, I've awarded two movies an A+ this year: The Dark Knight and Wall-E.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

A Videodrome t-shirt from my mother-in-law.

blaaagh said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
At the theater: Rachel Getting Married: I was glad to spend some time with Jonathan Demme, not to mention with the lady who sang the closing song from SOMETHING WILD, and I loved all the wise and detailed performances. Still, I thought both the family confrontation scenes, and especially the music performance scenes, went on far too long. Some editing, please!

On DVD (haven’t succumbed to Blu-ray yet): like so many others, the holidays somehow draw us to the Lord of the Rings trilogy, in their eternally extended versions. It was great fun to see them again, and to snuggle up under blankets, away from the rain and/or snow, and feel their epic and emotional power.

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I like them nice: it’s far too common to be “naughty” nowadays I remember three Christmases ago, in Bolinas, Pattie and I sitting in our (rented) 1895 beach cabin with the rain falling outside, and the dogs at our feet, watching IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, and tears falling from both of our sets of eyes, and feeling renewed by it before tottering off to bed. That said, I haven’t seen either Bad or Badder Santa, and given the right circumstances, I will probably enjoy them both!

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

I love Ida Lupino for what she achieved as a director, and for her indelible impression as an actress. Not to mention her memorable turn in FOOD OF THE GODS: “they got et by the bigger ones.” However, I love Mercedes McCambridge best, not only for her brilliant voice work in THE EXORCIST, and not only for fighting to get credit for that, but especially for her touching, puzzling-in-a-good-way performance as Luz in GIANT.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
What an odd question. However, my choice is Agent Cooper (Kyle Maclachlan), who was still in his fresh, mysterious period, and who didn’t overplay the irony, or veer too far from truthfulness in his portrayal.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.
How about remaking Hitchcock’s SUSPICION? It’d be hard to find actors as good as the originals, but if by some chance someone with enough talent thought hard enough about it, they might come up with a respectable remake, with a better ending.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.
DO THE RIGHT THING. I haven’t seen it for a few years, but I thought it was almost perfect each time I saw it.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
Lawrence Tierney, if only for BORN TO KILL!

8) Are most movies too long?
No, I like long movies, if they’re good.

8) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
Helen Mirren as Queen Elizabeth II in THE QUEEN. I can’t forget her encounter with that great beautiful buck.

9) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
Dino DeLaurentiis’s KING KONG vs. Peter Jackson’s KING KONG, with the original ape watching from the sidelines.

10) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
You know I have a soft spot for Sheree, not only because she was a regular customer of mine, one who charmed me for life with her kindness and her natural beauty, during my tender youth and my fledgling years in southern Cal, at my first bookstore job in Santa Monica. What a lovely lady she was, generous and perceptive and unselfish—and I had already been impressed with her after her performance in NO DOWN PAYMENT, a film she professed not to remember having made.

11) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
Because it has moments which halfway escape my understanding and/or appreciation—because parts of it confuse me. Because I shut down during the first viewing, due to unbearably violent or painful scenes—but afterward feel as if I’ve seen something valuable.

12) Favorite road movie.
The first one that comes to mind is MELVIN AND HOWARD.

13) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
This is embarrassing, but I can’t remember whether I’ve seen any of his films—so I’ll say TWO MULES FOR SISTER SARA, which I enjoyed a lot and for which he wrote the screen story.

14) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
My mom, who would sit with me as she ironed clothes or did some other useful thing, and would focus as intently as I did on whatever old movie we could find, and say, “Oh! Skip Homeier!” or “God…look at Ann Blyth.” Or one time she stayed up late to see THE MIRACLE WORKER, when my dad wouldn’t let me stay up, and the next day after school she told me the whole story in such vivid detail that it was almost better than seeing the movie. She also talked to me a lot about how movies had affected and influenced her life: the outstanding story was how her older and beloved brother Dick (who died in a military plane crash at a young age) had taken her to see Karloff’s FRANKENSTEIN and the Lugosi DRACULA at age 3 or 4, and how she’d been so terrified that their mother had had to comfort Mom for some time to get her to go to bed…and when Mom went to bed, her brother had taped up photos of the Frankenstein monster on her headboard, so Mom was terrified anew! But for Mom and me, it was the basis for a real appreciation of the Universal horror movies, and Mom always got the sadness behind the Frankenstein monster, Lon Chaney’s Wolf Man, etc.


15) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

I love the credit sequence for NORTH BY NORTHWEST best of all:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIlqatMQSgI

16) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
How can I not choose Agar, who was in both THE MOLE PEOPLE and TARANTULA??

17) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.
I still don’t buy this argument completely, though it is very often true. Still, based on the most recent evidence, Godard was right, and I’ll use as my example MEN IN BLACK: a terrible movie which loses more and more credibility as it goes along, and which earned tons of money at the box office.

Come to think of it, I’d also like to offer up De Palma’s SCARFACE as an example: a terrible film which is beloved by innumerable young people. So, I’m just cranky. Sue me.

18) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
SOMETHING WILD

19) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
I love Tatum’s smile, and her performance in PAPER MOON, but there’s no substitute—or at least there wasn’t for my teenage self—for the dreamy, creamy-skinned and bright-eyed Linda Blair. I wish her a comeback in a good indie film.

20) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
Irony, I’m afraid, has been worn out for the moment, at least for me. I can’t think of any favorite ironic moments, because I think I’ve had enough of that quality.

21) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
Les Bonnes Femmes.

22) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
Urgghh…I wish I had seen enough films this year to be able to say. I am very anxious to see HAPPY GO LUCKY, which is no longer playing in Eugene, so I guess I’ll name that as the film which has been most neglected—though I haven’t seen it.

23) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
Dennis Christopher was always likeable but too soft and wimpy, whereas Robby Benson was painfully vulnerable, but able to stand up to a tough situation and even a fight. Plus he had to battle that goofy voice of his. So the latter.

24) Favorite movie about journalism.
Um, I’d jump to ALL THE PRESIDENT’S MEN, but I have to say I think back to THE CHINA SYNDROME often, and to Jane Fonda’s/Kimberly Wells’s choked-back-tears on-camera declaration: “I’m sorry I’m not very objective…”

25) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?
James Dean, Julie Harris, Raymond Massey, Jo Van Fleet, Richard Davalos and Lois Smith all reminiscing about their work on EAST OF EDEN.

26) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
I still have a soft spot for the imperfect but beloved (by me) BRONCO BILLY.

27) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?
Paul Dooley.

28) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.
I’m always wrong about the Oscars, no matter how much attention I pay, but I’m gonna say Sally Hawkins as Best Actress for Happy-Go-Lucky (and I haven’t even seen it yet!).

29) Your hope for the movies in 2009.
Less torture, more fun and more emotional risk. Some surprises from actors who previously seemed synthetic or played out.

30) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)
Sorry, but I really haven’t seen enough 2008 releases yet to offer my top ten. Sheesh—I used to see so many new movies, maybe that should be among my resolutions for 2009: to see any new films which seem to offer any possibility of quality.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

31) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?
Part 1)My sister Laura gave me the newly-released DVD of THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY, which I can’t wait to watch—and part 2)Dennis gave me a subscription to FILM COMMENT, which I anticipate will reinvigorate my love of movies and get me back to a more exploratory mode of seeing them.

Anthony said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
Milk, My Architecht: A Son'S Journey

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?
I am fond of the horror movies, silent night, deadly knight or black xmas...is that naughty?

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
Mercedes McCambridge, for her black clad villian in Ray's Johnny Guitar, plus the voice of Satan.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
Lara Flynn Boyle, who did a string of sexually complicated heroines in the 90s and then sadly lost it, and this was an almost perfect noir performance.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I keep wondering if films like Ishtar or Death to Smoochy, which were marketed in a way that undersold their considerable charms, and were odd enough that they needed to be explained, would do well not nessc. with remakes, but reissues, sort of like Criterion but on the big screen. I also wonder what would happen if you gave someone like Harmony Kormine or some of the mumble core fellows 20 millon dollars and told them to remake Waterworld or Superman:Returns, or even Titanic?

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

As a politican: Bamboozled (because loose limbed, burlesque that is so soaked with bile is a hard balance, and it was so meta it hurt). As a film maker, the remarkably tight, beautifully acted Inside Man, with Jodie Foster playing someone new, strong, and dislikeable.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
The Scott Brady who was in an episode of the littlest hobo? Then yes!

8) Are most movies too long?
Most movies spend too long explaining, and too little time working out emotions, and realtionships--as a general rule, they are badly paced (Role Models is a good example of in/out with lots of good actors scene, so is Sarah Marshall)

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
Helen McCroy, who made the easily parodied, easily mocked Cherie Blair, into a modern, open, moral counterpoint to the cold and formal Frears.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
Godzilla vs the Cloverfield Monster but in North Dakota.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
Sheree North. (for the episode while she was the hooker with Archie Bunker and for the weird, little seen, Schumacher riff on Altman Amatuer Night at the Dixie Bar and Grill)

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
If I was wrong, if people I trust tell me I am wrong, If what I feel is overwhelming what I think, if my dick or my heart gets in the way, if i am hungry or distracted while watching it, if i leave the film ambigiously

13) Favorite road movie.
true romance/crossroads

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
i haven't seen enough.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
my mother, who made me talk about things when i left the cinema, my friend pat, who kept arguing about the movies with me, the art critic david hickey, who taught me to trust my love of pop trash and to treat pop trash as significant, as worthy of writing about, the english critic Mark Sinker who told me that academic criticisms were worthy of being in the same places as quatidian experiences, and David Thomson, because his reference books are so opinatned.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WXrEptVgUnc&eurl=http://movieblog.ugo.com/index.php/movieblog/more/best_credits_sequences_the_taking_of_pehlam_one_two_three/ (font shot!)



17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
John Agar, for working from the 40s, to 2002.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I am not sure that Goddard was in the buisness of making movies, as much as he was in the business of making essays...and i always distrust people who refuse to have catholic (small c) tastes---why can we not enjoy both alphaville and logan's run? (same themes, same aesthetics)

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
silence of the lambs

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
Tatum O'Neal--because of her unhinged, incenstous, drunken falling apart, in the last few years of rescue me, something that Blair never seemed to be able to do (as teenagers, O'Neal struck me as more of control of her talent)

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
How unresolved Zodiac was, how the whole movie was about finding a killer, about obsessional knowing for two decades and three charchaters, and how that knowing was impossible.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
i don;t have one

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
Role Models

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
Robby Benson for his voice work as the Beast.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.
Zodiac

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?
Deep Throat Catherinne McKinnon, Andrew Sarris, Susie Bright, Larry Clarke, Phyllis Schafler, Al Goldstein, and Caitlin Flannagan.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
NA

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?
Kurtwood Smith

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.
It will bore me.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.
Actually Gays and Lesbians fucking on Screen.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)
1) Role Models
It was charming, and low key, and shaggy, and v. funny, and tender.
2) Wall E
the aestheics, the arguements against copyright, and finally feeling something for robots
3) Cloverfield
how do we make movies with DV? How do we create a movie about terror in new york, after real terror exists? How do 20 year olds process and disemaite information?
4) The Strangers
formally brilliant.
5) Death Race
joan allen, saying cocksucker.
6) Burn After Reading
a perfect little coen bros. confection.
7) Speed Racer
one of the ways to solve the uncanny valley, is to make things hyperreal, made me think the most about how movies are made in this post green screen era.
8) W
profoundly flawed, with wildly inapproite shifts of tone, but for james cromwell as papa and brolin's pitch perfect performance.
9) Paranoid PArk
Van Sant should only be allowed 1 million dollars to make a movie, any more then that, and he fails.
10) My Winnipeg
guy maddin pyschogeographically deconstructs what it means to be canadian.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?
I received no movie releated gifts

Robert Fiore said...

I belatedly checked and found out that the "Road to Morocco" song was not in the opening credit sequence, which gives me an excuse for a do-over I badly want to do:

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.

RAGING BULL, hands down. I can't believe I forgot about this, and I can't believe no one else has mentioned it. I was only reminded of it when I went to one of those "greatest opening sequence" pages which led to another greatest opening sequence page. I remember going to a showing of the picture at the New Beverly (jam-packed, as it hadn't shown on a large screen for some time) and I was on the popcorn line very close to showtime, and I said to the person next to me "If I miss the opening I'm going to be very unhappy." It's about half the reason to see the movie.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wQhwi8kk-dE

Dave B. said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theater-"The Spirit" (so bad that's it's good)
DVD-"The Dark Knight"

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty (Four Christmases, yes; Marley & Me, nah)

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes
McCambridge?

Road House! Ida!

4) Favorite actor/character from "Twin Peaks"

Peggy Lipton (liked her ever since "Mod Squad")

5) Name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

"Reflections in a Golden Eye"

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Best-"Malcolm X"
Fave-"Inside Man"

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

"Born to Kill"/"Reservoir Dogs" - Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

No, as long as their good

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Kenneth Branagh as FDR in (gasp) TV movie "Warm Springs" (A year from now I'd probably say Sean Penn in Milk)

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Godzilla vs. Geo. W. Bush (he's a great big monster, right?)

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

"It Happens Every Spring" and "Pick up on South Street" - Peters

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

To enjoy its greatness or entertainment value; Most seen film in theaters: "Cabaret" at least 10 times
Including TV/VHS/DVD: "Some Like It Hot" countless, priceless

13) Favorite road movie.

Tie: "Sullivan's Travels" and "Road to Utopia" (Honest!)

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Not a huge fan...but..."Seven Men from Now"

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Introduction: My Aunt Florence... she took me to see Bob Hope, Danny Kaye, Jack Lemmon...still my favorites
As an art form: Vincent Canby
Actor(s) Kept Me Coming Back for More: Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

"North by Northwest" (Saul Bass design set to Bernard Hermann's score, it doesn't get better than that)
link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIlqatMQSgI

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

I just know more about John Agar ("Tarantula"!)

18) Jean-Luc Godard...Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Mostly cranky... such recent b.o. hits as "Titanic," "Lord of the Rings" and "The Dark Knight" dispute that; but he's right, a lot of hits aren't that good...

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Not very original choice, but "The Silence of the Lambs"

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

No contest: "Paper Moon" vs. "The Exorcist" - Tatum every time

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

"O'Henry's Full House": “Gift of the Magi” segment

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

"Le Boucher"

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Tie: My best film of 1988 -"Mississippi Burning", woefully underappreciated, and
My best of 1976 - "Seven Beauties"...why is this masterpiece nearly forgotten?

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

"Breaking Away" vs. "Ode to Billy Joe": Dennis Christopher

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"His Girl Friday" ("Take Hitler and stick him on the funny page")

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Fantasy wish? George Cukor setting the record "straight" on why he was REALLY fired on "Gone with the Wind"

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Best and fave: "Unforgiven"

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

That's not fair... "Breaking Away" vs. "Robocop"... leans towards Dooley...but Smith if you include TV's "That '70s Show"

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Heath wins Best Supp Actor, standing ovation for Michelle and daughter

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Marriage of good Hollywood entertainments and strong indie films

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

1) "The Dark Knight" 2) "Milk" 3) "Slumdog Millionaire" 4) "Frost/Nixon" 5) "Curious Case of Benjamin Button" 6) "The Wrestler" 7) "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days" 8) "Frozen River" 9) "Let the Right One In" 10) "Pineapple Express" (this year's most underrated film, no other film made me laugh as much, and Franco was Lemmon-esque)

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

A "Dark Knight"/Joker bust...cool

This was so much fun...thanks!

Co said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Slumdog Millionaire

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Lupino

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Piper Laurie

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Casino Royale (1967)

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Tie between Do the Right Thing and 25th Hour

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

yes?

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Actually, Sean Penn as Milk

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

King Kong vs. Godzilla

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Peters

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because you loved it, to talk about it with friends later or watch it with someone you would like to see his reactions.

13) Favorite road movie.

Does Bonnie & Clyde count?

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

The Magnificent Matador

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My aunt Isabella

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Diving Bell & the Butterfly.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Agar

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I think he was cranky. I find The Godfather and other popular films to be very good.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Silence of the Lambs

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Wynnona Rider defyning Irony in Reality Bites

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I've watched very few, but I liked La Ceremonie very much.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Forgetting Sarah Marshall and In Bruges

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher, consider it a weakness, but I had to pick a guy with a first name as last name.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Almost Famous

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Federico Fellini on La Dolce Vita

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Unforgiven (the only post-Bird Eastwood-directed movie I actually like)

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

I LOVE Kurtwood Smith

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Brad Pitt is snubbed for Lead Actor

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Better. I don't care if I only watch two movies, I want them to be good.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I'll post soon, but not yet.. I still want to watch a few more movies. So far, it's like this:
1. The Dark Knight
2. Gomorra
3. Let the Right One In
4. The Wrestler
5. Slumdog Millionaire
6. Forgetting Sarah Marshall
7. In Bruges
8. WALL-E
9. Iron Man
10. The Visitor

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

The book High Fidelity by Nick Hornby. Loved the movie.

Nell Minow said...

From The Movie Mom

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

"Yes Man" in a theater, "Milk" on a critic's screener DVD.

2) Holiday movies-- Do you like them naughty or nice?

Nice! There's just about always some naughty behavior along the way (think of Scrooge) but I like a happy ending.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Two great actresses, and one a pioneering woman director. I pick both.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Special Agent Dale Cooper

5) It's been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn't work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I think that "Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood" and "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" could both be far better movies than the versions that were released. And I was awfully disappointed by the recent "Nancy Drew" movie and I know it could have been terrific.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"School Daze" -- I love Spike Lee, and this is an under-appreciated masterpiece.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Aw, I'm not going to favor one brother over another!

8) Are most movies too long?

No, time is too short.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Henry Fonda in "Young Mr. Lincoln." Everyone in "1776." Everyone in "Dick." Paul Scofield in "A Man for All Seasons" (well, sort of a politician)

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Marshmallow guy from "Ghostbusters" vs. Mothra

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

I think Sheree North had more talent but Jean Peters appeared in better movies.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

I love to see my favorite movies over and over. Once you know the plot, you can really open yourself up to the small details of the performances, production design, screenplay, direction, cinematography, and soundtrack. And when you watch the same movie many times over many years it serves as a measure of your own changes in perception and thinking.

13) Favorite road movie.

"The Wizard of Oz," "The African Queen," "Midnight Run"

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I am sorry to say I have not seen enough to make an informed decision.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Many candidates here -- Truffaut and Hitchcock in the book-length interview, my film school professor Paddy Whannel, but most of all the movie-makers themselves.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Lots of good choices, but I'll pick this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaLDyrun_Cc

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

I'll never forgive Johan Agar for not being a good husband to Shirley Temple.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

I don't think even he thought that. Evidence to the contrary: movies like "Dark Knight," "Lord of the Rings," and "Gone With the Wind" are fine films. And there are many, many deservedly unpopular films.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Rachel Getting Married"

20) Tatum O'Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal is a more talented actress.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Have not seen enough to make an educated choice.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

I love "Be Kind Rewind"

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

I like Dennis Christopher. His brief appearance in "Chariots of Fire" shows how much he can do with very little screen time.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"All the President's Men"

26) What's the DVD commentary you'd most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

"Duck Soup" and the Marx Brothers

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"Letters from Iwo Jima"

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Two great character actors!

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

The best 10 minutes of acting this year were when Viola Davis appeared in "Doubt." If she doesn't win Best Supporting Actress there is no justice. No ESP, just a hope.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

I so want "Watchmen" to be GREAT.

31) What's your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/2008/12/top-ten-lists-for-2008.html

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Watching "Period of Adjustment" with my husband and daughter.

Larry Gross said...

l. Regular Lovers Phillipe Garrell
2. The Alastair Sim Christmas Carol is naughty and nice.
3. Ida Lupino. One of the supreme actresses in cinema history. Ms.McCambridge a fine character actress in a couple of films. No comparison.
4. Sheryl Lee, the deceased Laura.
5. WUSA a horrific version of Robert Stone's masterful novel of the '60s cries out to be remade better.
6. Do The Right Thing, with Clockers and Jungle Fever close behind.

7. pass

8. Most movies are sadly not too good, so ipso facto most movies are too long.

9. Tie between Henry Fonda as Abraham Lincoln, Gerard Depardieu as Danton,

10. Pass

11. Peters made more good films.

12. Some films are so great that they obviously have to be seen more than once to properly be appreciated, obviously, Man With a Movie Camera, Rules of the Game, Dr.Strangelove. Some films have to be seen multiple times for their superficial inadequacies to be overcome by the viewer--on the way to beginning to see their greatness--for me these include, Clockwork Orange, Animal House, Realm of the Senses, The Shining and
of course, The Big Lebowski.

13. Depends on your exact definition of the form: Either Red
River or Wenders' Kings of the Road or Weekend.

14. Seven Men From Now.

15. James Agee

16. Tough, so many. But I'll stick with Touch of Evil.

17. Pass

18. I believe this is a misquote. I believe he said with more irony, 'when a good film is commercially successful it's due to a misunderstanding.' A sublimely worded tho instructive half-truth.
It neglects the commercial success of comedy/musical works like Keaton's Chaplin's and Singin' in the Rain. It's a statement that combines profound truth, while often being incorrect. Sort of like honesty is the best policy.

19. Rachel's Getting Married, the best American film of 2008.

20. Tatum O'Neal, she could act.

21. Every single minute of Ophuls'
Letter to an Unknown Woman, but especially, the moment when Jourdan fails to recognize that Fontaine is the love of his life while he is trying to seduce her. Runner up, Joel McCrea getting it on the head just when he attempts to leave masquerading as being homeless in Sullivan's Travel. Plus Hitchcock's camera's misdirectional emphasis on money leading up to Marion's murder in Psycho.

22. Le Boucher for Jean Yanne's murderous tenderness and the then Mme. Chabrol's transcendent eyes.

23. Flight of the Red Balloon, but also Summer Palace (Lou Ye) Mad Detective (Johnny To) Winter Light
(Carlos Reygadas)

24. Dennis Christopher. He can act.

25. His Girl Friday if we assume that Citizen Kane is not about journalism.

26. Lang and Lorre commenting on M.

27. Bridges of Madison County.

28. Paul Dooley. More range.

29. Slumdog Millionaire will not win best picture. Something more studio will.

30. Better movies than 2008, as many good ones as 2007. Lots of luck.

31. My list is being printed on Movie City News I think.

32. Sitting near my son giggling at Bolt, and seeing him wearing 3D glasses.

Anonymous said...

1) Theater- Frost/Nixon; DVD- Six Hours to Live (1932)
2) Naughty (DH I & II)
3) IL- Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: Mmmmmmmmm
5) Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey (How could DEATH LOSE a game of CLUE?????)
6) Do the Right Thing
7) LT- Seinfeld tiebreaker
9) Claude Rains in Caesar and Cleopatra
10) Varan the Unbelievable vs Caltiki the Immortal Monster
11) S-: How to be Very, Very Popular
12) When you see a film and your reaction runs along the lines of "I can't BELIEVE what I just SAW!". I would offer Run, Lola, Run as a personal example.
13) Vanishing Point
14) The Killer is Loose
15) William K. Everson. His evisceration of the Medved Brothers' "Worst Films of All Time" is classic.
16) North by Northwest http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIlqatMQSgI
19) Married to the Mob- Never a more innovative use of end credits!
20) LB (#1: Night Patrol; #2: Didn't marry John McEnroe)
21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
23) OSS 117: Cairo, Nest of Spies
24) Robby Benson??? He's not just my recurring nightmare??
25)The Big Clock
26) DW Griffith on Birth of a Nation
27) Play Misty for Me
28) KS- Ro. Bo. Cop
29) The YouTube video of Jerry Lewis accepting the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award will be the most viewed clip of 2009.
30) Decent summer movies!!

Bob

Kimberly said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: The Dark Knight
DVD (I don't own a Blu-ray player): Kung Fu Panda

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

I like them animated by Rankin/Bass.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Mercedes McCambridge scares the hell out of me so she gets my vote.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Russ Tamblyn's Dr. Lawrence Jacoby. I love Russ.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Neil LaBute directed a horrible version of one of my favorite books, Possession (2002). I'd love to see it remade by director Philip Haas who proved that he has a deep understanding of A.S. Byatt's subtle prose when he made the wonderful Angels and Insects (1995), which was also based on one of Byatt's novels.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do the Right Thing (1989)

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

Most modern films are. I think film editing became a lost art around 1995.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

My mind's going blank but I thought Bruno Ganz did a pretty good job at portraying Hitler in Downfall (2004)

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Godzilla vs. the Cloverfield monster

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Sheree North

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

I've never understood why anyone wouldn't want to watch a movie again if they enjoyed it. That would be like hearing a great song you enjoyed and refusing to listen to it again or seeing a painting you liked and refusing to look at it again. It's ridiculous thinking unless you view films as pure entertainment without any kind of real intellectual or artistic value.

13) Favorite road movie.

It's a tie between Easy Rider (1969) and Stranger than Paradise (1984)

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I haven't seen many, but I can remember really enjoying The Killer Is Loose (1956).

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My father, whose influence I've written about in great detail.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

For the moment I'll give it to Dr. No (1962).

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

I had to search through their filmographies at imdb.com to remember their work, but my vote goes to Kenneth Tobey.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Godard is always cranky, but there's a lot of truth in what he suggested. Hype can cloud perspective. It can make some movies appear more important than they are (The Dark Knight), but it can also make great films appear to be less than they are (Cloverfield). I think popularity can be a double-edged sword.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

I've got to go with Silence of the Lambs if only for Jody Foster's groundbreaking role as a female FBI Agent, but I also have a deep affection for Melvin and Howard.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Linda Blair. She's terrific and I wish she had been given better roles throughout her career.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

I've been watching lots of Woody Allen films lately, which are of course filled with irony and his film Stardust Memories gets my vote since it's the ultimate ironic statement about the director and his films. It's also a great tribute to Fellnini and an all around beautiful film.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I haven't seen many, but I really like The Butcher.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Cloverfield. The film got a lot of attention from critics, but it was mostly negative. This is obvious when you start looking at the "Best of 2008" lists compiled by critics. Thankfully it's finding an audience anyway and French critics seem to be championing it.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher. I got tired of Benson in the '70s when he appeared on cover after cover of Teen Beat and Tiger Beat magazine. Also, Benson's voice just bugs me.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Citizen Kane

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I think it would be really entertaining to listen to John Huston and Bogart discuss there work together on many films, but if I have to pick just one, it would be Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948).

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

It's a four way tie between White Hunter Black Heart (1990), High Plains Drifter (1973), Play Misty for Me (1971) and The Beguiled. I think all these films are better than the Oscar winners he's made.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Milk will win a lot of awards. L.A. and Hollywood in general have to make amends for basically giving the "yes" vote to Prop 8. Us folks up here in Northern CA are still fumming about it.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That more boutique DVD companies pop up to release older films that only I and a handful of others watch and that the small crop of current ones still hanging in there manage to stay in business for another year.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

I haven't seen a lot of new movies due to lack of interest and lack of funds so I'm really not qualified to compile one. I suspect films like The Wrestler, Let the Right One Inmight make my list once I have the opportunity to see them, but my Top 5 currently are:

1. The Bank Job
2. Cloverfield
3. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days
4. The Dark Knight
5. Tropic Thunder

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

A Donald Cammell biography called Life on the Wildside by Rebecca and Sam Umland.

Downtown Brittni Brown said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Happy Go Lucky & The Band's Visit on DVD

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Nice. Can't go wrong with It's a Wonderful Life.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Donna
5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Fahrenheit 451 - book adaptation.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

25th Hour

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lairemce Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

I don't think so.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Not really a politician, but Helen Mirren as The Queen was excellent.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Old Yeller vs. Lassie

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Sheree North, although I don't know why.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Some movies need more than one viewing to fully understand. Some movies are often great to visit after time. What's the point of seeing a movie if you're gonna forget about it and never see it again?

13) Favorite road movie.

Does Back to the Future count? "Roads. Where we're going we don't need Roads"

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

The Tall T

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Maybe my family members or teachers, but honestly I wouldn't credit anyone except for filmmakers making good films and me wanting to see more.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Catch me if you Can

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1mkM-XCE3v4

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Probably John Agar

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

You could make an argument for either, but I would say popular movies are less likely to be good just because filmmakers and studios are trying to please more people. However, there are of course exceptions.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

The recent Rachel Getting Married

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal. I've always been a fan of Bad News Bears.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Adaptation. The ending makes it.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

I honestly haven't seen any.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Synecdoche, New York.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Network

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Philadelphia Story - Cukor, Grant, Stewart & Hepburn.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Million Dollar Baby

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith.
29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

Wall-E will be nominated for best picture.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Real independent films get distributors and not forgotten about.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Still a lot to see:

Rachel Getting Married
The Dark Knight
Wall-E
Synecdoche New York
Benjamin Button
Burn After Reading
Happy Go Lucky
Iron Man
A Christmas Tale
Speed Racer

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Jimmy Stewart Biography.

Walter Biggins said...

Hi Dennis. Once again, I've answered the quiz at my own site, right here.

Geek Monkey (Chris) said...

1) What was the last movie you saw Theatrically? On DVD or Blu-Ray?

In the theaters it was MILK, which startled me by its delicacy and dedication to character over some of the (wonderful) stylistic choices made in the film. On DVD (sorry, Blu-Ray is unfortunately on a distant horizon after kids, kids, and, uh, kids) it was Jean-Luc Godard's BREATHLESS. Oh, man...so good.

2) Holiday movies - do you like them naughty or nice?

I really only ever watch two "holiday" films each year - IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE and ELF, with occasional forays into MARCH OF THE WOODEN SOLDIERS and THE BISHOP'S WIFE when I can, so I think "nice" is the safe answer. Plus, I woefully admit to not having seen BAD SANTA yet, so...

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino for her work behind the camera as well as the awesome HIGH SIERRA with Humphrey Bogart.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I know I'm not alone in professing the enormous crush I had on Sherilyn Fenn. The saddle shoes, the cherry stem...sigh. It's hard to pick out an individual in Twin Peaks because one major reason for its greatness lay in the spectacular ensemble. Least favorite, though...much easier: James Marshall/James Hurley. Sorry, but how Laura or Donna fell for you still boggles my mind.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS. Like THE THING (but not THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL), I think in the right hands you can do some really great things in terms of themes and situations without taking away anything from the fun of the 50's horror/sci-fi classics. Plus maybe this will allow people to stop re-making INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

4 LITTLE GIRLS. I think there was a long period of time Lee lost his way as a narrative filmmaker throughout a lot of the late 90's right through to INSIDE MAN. Nothing he's done in the last 15+ years have had the impact his documentaries have.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

All those incredible Film Noir box sets by Warner Bros. have really opened my eyes to how great Lawrence Tierney is. BORN TO KILL, baby...BORN TO KILL.

8) Are most movies too long?

It's been said elsewhere here, but bad movies are too long. Good movies are too short.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Jimmy Stewart in MR. SMITH GOES TO WASHINGTON. And don't crush my fantasy by telling me there never really was a Jefferson Smith!

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Blogger's choice versus Frank Zappa's Cheepnis. Now THAT'S a monster I want to see brought to the big screen!

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters, although it's with a red face that I admit I chose her after having to look up both actresses. 2009 resolutions, and all that...

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Man, any number of reasons. Maybe you didn't "get it" the first time you saw it (NASHVILLE was like that for me - too young I guess), maybe it's the type of film that brings something new every time you view it (pretty much anything by Stanley Kubrick, but most recently THE SHINING) or, and maybe this is the best reason, because there's something there, either in the film itself or in the circumstances you came to see it, that pulls at your heart in such a way that you can't help but seek it out again and again. The first date I took my now wife to was THE FISHER KING way back when, and we come back to it time and again to experience those first few moments when we just knew.

13) Favorite road movie.

Does SULLIVAN'S TRAVELS qualify? Oh, who am I kidding? My juvenile heart screams for HAROLD AND KUMAR GO TO WHITE CASTLE.

Sorry. Really, SULLIVAN'S TRAVELS.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Gee, why doncha get a little obscure, Dennis? I just looked through his IMDB, and I haven't seen a single thing he's done. What do you recommend?

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My father. 'Nuff said.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Your wish is my command: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEGbQx2ZQPc

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Kenneth Tobey played Jim Bowie in Disney's DAVY CROCKETT, so he automatically gets the win.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Just because he's cranky doesn't mean he's not at least partially right. Look at TITANIC. I don't want to rain on James Cameron's parade, but both my and I almost walked out when we saw it in the theater. On the other hand, PULP FICTION was a HUGE success spawning dozens of cheap imitations, and I still believe it's a great movie.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

My gut was telling me to go with SOMETHING WILD, but after a quick IMDB check I was stunned to learn he not only directed but wrote CAGED HEAT. Ladies and Gentlemen we have a winner!

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

I love THE EXORCIST, but gimmie PAPER MOON. Tatum O'Neal.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Is it ironic that the guy in BREATHLESS who points out Michel to the cops is the guy who wrote and directed the movie, thereby directing the course of the story in the actual story? I hope so...I was never very good at pointing out irony.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Haven't seen any yet, but that's another 2009 resolution. I only saw BREATHLESS for the first time this morning!

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

THE SPIDERWICK CHRONICLES. You could definitely feel John Sayles' writing in there. Just a great, powerful children's movie that talks to children instead of shouting at them in nothing but bold primary colors.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Even if Dennis Christopher wasn't perfect in BREAKING AWAY, I can't forgive Robbie Benson for all the horrible television he heaped upon us.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Please tie HIS GIRL FRIDAY and THE PHILADELPHIA STORY in a pretty knot and have ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN escort them both to the prom, where they will be stunned at the revelation that the dude in JUST ONE OF THE GUYS is actually, get this: a girl.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I would love to hear David Lynch explain all of the ideas that ran through his head while making INLAND EMPIRE, but if he refused I'd beg for the full story on what happened during DUNE.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Much as I love UNFORGIVEN, I'd like to move away from the herd and pick the film that also happens to have Kevin Costner's best performance: A PERFECT WORLD.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

How can anyone born around my time (1973) not pick Samantha's dad? Paul Dooley.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

We'll all miss John Stewart.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Really, I just hope to see them. 2008 was a great year for film, and being a new Dad I unfortunately just didn't have the time to see everything I would have liked.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

http://www.geekmonkeyonline.com/journal/2009/1/7/the-actual-year-in-movies.html

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?


Scorsese, by Roger Ebert. My favorite reviewer expounding on one of my favorite directors.

Awesome once again, Dennis! Looking forward to more in 2009!

Jonathan Lapper said...

For whatever reason I haven't felt I have had the time to really do this well this semester but today I checked out Marilyn Ferdinand's list and liked it so much that I am prepared to now say see her list for my answers as well. A bit of a cheat I know but there it is.

Joseph B. said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically "The Reader", on DVD John Huston's "Victory".

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

It's taken me a long while to warm up to the nastiness of "Bad Santa", so I'll say nice.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Lupino

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I have a major crush on Sherilynn Finn.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"25th Hour"

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney, if only for the bad ass story I read somewhere on a blog last year about one of Tierney's in-person cluster-f**ks at a revival of one of his 40's films, complete with him taking a piss in the back of the theater and calling everyone "bastard".

8) Are most movies too long?

Only the bad ones. I could watch a 5 hour cut of "Magnolia" anyday.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Philip Baker Hall as Nixon.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Them vs. Godzilla

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Sheree North

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Comedies are best viewed numerous times. I still get something new and funny out of "The Big Lebowski" after 50 plus viewings.

13) Favorite road movie.

I've always been partial to Wenders' "Alice In the Cities"

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

I'll buck the western trend and go with 1960's "The Rise and Fall of Legs Diamond"

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Andrew Sarris. I stumbled across The American Cinema at a library (remember those!?) when I was about 13 or 14, just getting into film and everything fell into place. I read that book twice in about a month, devouring every word and idea behind the auteur theory. Some of my friends say I stick too heavily to this principle still.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

There's nothing better than this

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Agar, if only because he starred in a western about my hometown!

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Godard was mostly cranky, but I'll give him a 10% margin of error on this one. I equate popular with lots of terms- cult classic, midnight movie... nothing wrong with any of those genres.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Latest and greatest, "Rachel Getting Married"

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Blair. Streets of Fire, man!

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

See above Godard clip.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Wow hard to pick 1 from the 122 or so he directed. I suppose "La Rupture" ranks pretty high.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Tie- "Inside" and "Summer Palace"

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Hmm both were in a lot of TV shows I never watched. Benson? Cuz he was born in Dallas.....

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

"All the President's Men". Crackles off the screen everytime I watch it.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Scorsese for "Casino"

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

"Pale Rider"

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Dooley.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

That it'll run over its designated time slot.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That I can see just as many as I did in 2008.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Still working on it. I Hope to see "The Wrestler" and "Revolutionary Road" next week.

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

The Office complete box set.

jim emerson said...

At long last -- a belated Mele Kalikimaka and Happy New Year, Dennis!

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theater: "Doubt." DVD: "Unbreakable."

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

The best ones are both.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Gotta go with Ida -- for her pioneering directorial efforts as well as her acting.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I never got tired of Agent Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan), but I loved any scene with Sarah and/or Leland Palmer (Grace Zabriskie, Ray Wise).

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

"Sweeney Todd." Or "The Black Dahlia."

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

"Do the Right Thing" -- by far.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

I have to go with LT (if only for Norman Mailer's "Tough Guys Don't Dance" and QT's "Reservoir Dogs") because, of the top of my head, I don't recall Scott Brady. That's my loss, I'm sure.

8) Are most movies too long?

Yes, and 20 years ago they seemed too long because they were too short. Perfect example: Sergio Leone's "Once Upon a Time in America." Anybody who had to sit through the 139-minute US release will tell you it was way, WAY longer than the 229-minute version.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Phillip Baker Hall as Richard M. Nixon in Altman's "Secret Honor."

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

"Godzilla" vs. "The Giant Behemoth": Bigger Than God.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

Jean Peters.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because the really good ones not only draw you back, they get better.

13) Favorite road movie.

"Im Lauf der Zeit" ("In the Course of Time"/"Kings of the Road"), Wim Wenders, 1976/77.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

"Seven Men From Now" is one easy answer. I still have to start watching the new box set.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Richard T. Jameson and Kathleen Murphy (both film profs at the U of WA).

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

The first one that always comes to mind is "North By Northwest." Gets me jazzed every time:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jIlqatMQSgI

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Oh good god, Dennis. That's impossible.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

No correlation either way. I wish we didn't know which movies were, or weren't, popular.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

"Melvin and Howard"

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal wasn't in "Roller Boogie," was she. (That's a statement, not a question.)

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

"Chinatown." (“I was trying to keep someone from being hurt. I ended up making sure that she was hurt.”)

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

"Le Boucher."

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

"Shotgun Stories"

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

tie: "Citizen Kane" and "His Girl Friday." (Worst: "Absence of Malice" -- except for the GREAT image of Melinda Dillon gathering up the delivered papers in her neighborhood.)

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

I want to hear the Coens crack themselves up watching "Barton Fink" or "Big Lebowski."

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

I cannot, will not, choose. They are among my favorite actors. They and Harris Yulin should be in everything. (Are we doing "Breaking Away" now, with the Dennis Christopher and the Paul Dooley? What is next, for god's sake? Barbara Barrie or Barbara Baxley??? It's torture, I say!)

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

James Franco will not win.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Mo' betta. Please.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

http://blogs.suntimes.com/scanners/2009/01/jims_ten_best_favorite_movies.html

1. In Bruges (comedy, gangster; on DVD)
2. The Edge of Heaven (multi-narrative drama; on DVD)
3. A Christmas Tale (comedy, family)
4. Pineapple Express (comedy, stoner/bromantic, crime, action, Ninja; on DVD/Blu-ray Jan. 6, 2009)
5. Wendy and Lucy (heartbreaker)
6. Let the Right One In (comedy, tweener love story, horror)
7. Still Life (comedy, romantic/industrial; on DVD)
8. Chop Shop (docudrama; on DVD)
9. Shotgun Stories (Southern Gothic; on DVD)
10. The Fall (comedy, Western/Eastern fantasy adventure; on DVD/Blu-ray)
11. Che (instructional documentary, with re-enactments)

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

My favorite is one I gave, not one I received: The Tippi Hedren/"Birds" Barbie doll.

Kevin J. Olson said...

Way late to the party on this one, but I'll give it a go, sadly I have to omit some questions due to lack of knowledge:

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: Revolutionary Road.
Blue Ray: The Fall

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Nice.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Lupino. She was a hell of a brave director.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

I'm ashamed to say that I never watched the show...

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

The most recent examples I can think of would be Atonement or, on the complete opposite side of the spectrum, Step Brothers.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Crooklyn

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney, especially for the time he did a voice spot on The Simpson's.

8) Are most movies too long?

Not if they're good. But comedies are getting harder and harder to sit through.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Philip Baker Hall as Nixon

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Emo/Goth-throb Johnny Depp vs Shirtless-Frat Boy Matthew Mcconaughey.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Truly great films only get better. You can never have stop learning something about a movie; or yourself in relation to the movie.

13) Favorite road movie.

Stranger Than Paradise. But I also love Road House...


15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

Mike Markee. Film teacher from high school. That man LOVED him some dutch angles.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

David Gordon Green's Undertow.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_S1C5U-gp0&feature=related

I love how green is so unapologetic about throwing every effect at you within the first five minutes of the film. The score by Philip Glass is pretty great, too.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Cranky! Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Spider-Man 2, Iron Man, The Silence of the Lambs, etc.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Something Wild.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum, because I just saw her in an amazing Lifetime original movie...

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Not in a movie, but this has been discussed already on Emerson's site...but I have to use it: Kate Winslet's performance on Extra's stating that there are too many Holocaust films, and they exist for the sake of raking in the easy Oscar. I hope she mentions this in her acceptance speech (if she wins).

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Shotgun Stories.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Christopher. "Do it for the cutters!"

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

Hands down, The Insider.

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

High Plains Drifter

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith, of course! And here's why:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QdZqKVcI9m8

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

To everyone's dismay The Reader will win Best Picture.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

Keep 'em coming...


31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Link to my top 10:

http://kolson-kevinsblog.blogspot.com/2009/01/its-been-year.html

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

Sadly no film related gifts this year. I will buy myself Ebert's book on Scorsese, though.

nathan m. said...

Here goes:

1. Theatrically I saw "Gran Torino" tonight. Earlier in the day, in an attempt to confirm how bad it really was, I watched "Star Wars: Episode III, Revenge of the Sith"

2. Either way.

3. Ida Lupino. Just for "Outrage"

4. I have to go with Agent Cooper. He's a movie/TV character that I would love to meet in real life.

5. A remake? This is hard, because I know I have that thought every now and then, but I can't think of specific answers. Maybe Martin Scorsese could do a remake of his own film, "Gangs of New York"

6. Spike Lee? It's a toss up. I like "Do The Right Thing" and "Crooklyn", but don't really know how to compare them.

7. Pass.

8. That depends. Most biopics are too short. I find some comedies tend to run too long. But it's never too long if it's a good movie, and never too short if it's bad.

9. Henry Fonda as Lincoln

10. Pass.

11. Peters.

12. Of course. The best movies demand to be seen again and again and again.

13. Road movie? Does "Five Easy Pieces" count?

14. Boetticher? Well, I've not seen any yet. But "Seven Men From Now" is next on my queue.

15. My friend Aaron Diaz. We would watch a movie a day in the summer of 03' and then talk for two or three hours after each one.

16. Credit sequence? "The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly"

17. Pass.

18. I sense that sometimes Godard would say things as if he were trying on a new shirt. He just wanted to know what it would sound like coming out of his mouth. Sometimes his quotes are wonderful, and other times totally moronic.

19. "The Silence of the Lambs"

20. Blair.

21. Irony? Well, all of "Adaptation", and maybe the final scene in "Nashville"

22. "La Rupture"

23. "Chop Shop"

24. Pass.

25. "Zodiac"

26. Alfred Hitchcock on just about any movie he ever made. But then, I'd love to hear Haws, Ford, Masaki Kobayashi, Louis Malle, Vittorio De Sica, and many other dead directors.

27. "A Perfect World"

28. Pass

29. My prediction: Sally Hawkins won't win for best actress, because a number of voters forgot to watch their "Happy-Go-Lucky" screeners.

30. That Scorsese returns to form with 'Shutter Island"

31. I've seen fewer movies this year than in years past, and so don't feel that I'm up to putting together a top ten, but here's a few that I rather liked.

1. Happy-Go-Lucky
2. The Wrestler
3. Forgetting Sarah Marshall
4. Tropic Thunder
5. Paranoid Park
6. Wall-E
7. Chop Shop

32. (bonus). It is tradition in my family for people to simply ask what each other wants, and then to go and get it. There's no mystery. Anyway, I got my family to catch the Criterion 40% off blow out sale and got "The Passion of Joan of Arc", "The Fallen Idol" and "Mouchette"

dlauthor said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: Frost/Nixon
On DVD: RocknRolla

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty.

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

McPazuzu.

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Ray Wise.

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

Return of the Jedi.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do the Right Thing.

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Tierney.

8) Are most movies too long?

No. Just Benjamin Button.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Forest Whitaker as Idi Amin.

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

Godzilla (Japan) vs. Godzilla (American abomination). Opening bout: Cloverfield monster vs. Modern Gamera.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

North.

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because I enjoy it. Either repeated viewings add to the experience, or it's like comfort food.

13) Favorite road movie.

Duel.

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

The Tall T.

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My father.

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

Seven.

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

Agar.

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

Godard's entire persona is built around crankiness. There are plenty of good, popular movies, and there are more than plenty obscure pieces of crap.

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Stop Making Sense.

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Blair.

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

The way everything falls apart in The Killing.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

La Ceremonie.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Encounters at the End of the World.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Christopher.

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

All the President's Men

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

D.W. Griffith and Spike Lee on Birth of a Nation.

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

Unforgiven.

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Smith.

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

People will come out of the woodwork professing to hate Slumdog Millionaire the day after the awards.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

That my wife and I will be able to see a bunch of them, what with the baby and all.

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

WALL-E
In Bruges
The Visitor
Milk
Slumdog Millionaire
Encounters at the End of the World
Man on Wire
The Dark Knight
Rachel Getting Married
Cloverfield


BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

An Xbox Live subscription, so I can watch streaming Netflix all year.

Richard Doyle said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?

Theatrically: My Bloody Valentine 3D

DVD: Horse Feathers

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?

Naughty

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?

Ida Lupino

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks

Russ Tamblyn

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.

I'd like to see a film version of "The Lady in the Lake" that didn't use the POV gimmick

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.

Do the Right Thing

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?

Lawrence Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?

Yes

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.

Philip Baker Hall in Secret Honor

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?

Because I enjoy doing it.

13) Favorite road movie.

Two Lane Blacktop

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.

Ride Lonesome

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?

My father

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)

The Man With the Golden Arm

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?

John Agar

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.

He's right: See Forrest Gump

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.

Handle With Care

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?

Tatum O'Neal

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)

Robert Downey cas as "the man" in Boogie Nights

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.

Nada

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.

Can't think of one

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?

Dennis Christopher

25) Favorite movie about journalism.

All the President's Men

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?

Tobe Hooper and Steven Spielberg doing Poltergeist together ... the truth will out

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.

The Gauntlet

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?

Kurtwood Smith

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.

The show will be too long.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.

I hope that our fascination with 3D will wain by the end of the year

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

bleah ... don't like lists like this

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?

A DVD of The Gold Rush so I can watch the silent version, not the one with the Chaplin narration.

Dave said...

1. Encounters At the End of the Earth, last weekend at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's Union Cinema. Glad I had a chance to see this in 35mm. Wonderful images, intriguing personalities, and full of humour and Herzog's incomparable, unconventional narration.

At home, the second half of The Dark Knight on blu-ray. Not the film to end all films, but likely the pinnacle of the superhero genre (at least until WATCHMEN.)

2. Naughty please... Bad Santa. Watch. Repeat. I'm a sucker for A Christmas Story though... go figure.

3. Ida

4. When I think of Twin Peaks I think of Agent Cooper and Audrey. I'm going with Audrey.

5. The Great Gatsby. This novel deserves a film that nails it.

6. Inside Man. Great cast, and I'm nuts for Clive Owen in anything he does.

7. Tierney.

8. Wayyyy too long, especially when compared to the economy in script and storytelling evident in the 30s, 40s, and 50s.

9. Thandie Newton as Condoleeza Rice. Brutal portrayal.

10. Godzilla vs Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man.

11. Jean Peters.

12. To revel in a great movie. I haven't adopted this habit personally, but I had a college prof whose filmgoing strategy was to always see the final 10-15 minutes of a film before seeing it in its entirety for the first time. He wanted to avoid being swept along by the plot so he could concentrate on the elements in the film that intrigued him more. I liked his thinking. A great film gets richer with each viewing.

13. Sullivan's Travels.

14. Pass... I hereby publicly admit my ignorance regarding this filmmaker.

15. My friend John, manager of Milwaukee's Oriental Theater through part of the 80s, widely and deeply knowledgeable in film, and always up for a good film b.s. session.

16. My brain immediately seized on Pscyho, so I'll stick with that.

17. John Agar.

18. Strongly disagree. Consider Silence of the Lambs-- hugely popular, widely influentual (unfortunately, in 99% of the cases), but possessed of the greatest level of craft, economy in storytelling, strong script, and exceptional casting.

19. Silence of the Lambs, followed closely by Something Wild.

20. Tatum O'Neal.

21. Blue Velvet.

22. Pass... I've only seen his Madame Bovary.

23. Stuck.

24. Dennis Christopher.

25. Zodiac.

26. Fargo. The Coen Brothers.

27. Gran Torino.

28. Paul Dooley.

29. It will be a meaningless exercise in service of Hollywood marketing and unrelated to artistic achievement, at least in the actor, actress, director, and best pic categories. (Oh wait, that's not a prediction... it's a fact.) Sean Penn will go on too long in his Best Actor acceptance speech.

30. WATCHMEN will be great and find success.

31.
1 Wall-E
2 The Dark Knight
3 Vicky Cristina Barcelona
4 Gran Torino
5 Quantum of Solace
6 Encounters at the End of the World
7 Frozen River
8 Iron Man
9 Hellboy II: the Golden Army
10 Speed Racer

Runner-ups (no particular order):

4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days
Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Stuck
Brideshead Revisited
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
W.
Pineapple Express

32. Bought myself Wall-E on blu ray.

Neil Sarver said...

Tobe Hooper and Steven Spielberg doing Poltergeist together ... the truth will out...

I'd like that, too, but seriously, I've seen nothing that suggested in the slightest that the relationship between Hooper and Spielberg on Poltergeist differs in the slightest from the relationship between Spielberg and George Lucas on Raiders of the Lost Ark, as discussed openly on the Indy DVD set. Director and powerful writer/producer.

I think people were just ready to hear that the dirty dirty man who made The Texas Chain Saw Massacre was really a hack.

Justanotheryokel said...

1) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
Underworld: Rise of the Lycans. My thoughts of the movie can be expressed in the first sound of the title: Ugh!

2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?
Naughty

3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
Ida Lupino

4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
The Man from Another Planet, of course

5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.
"Live a Little, Love a Little" the Elvis movie.

6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.
Do the Right Thing

7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
Lawrence Tierney

8) Are most movies too long?
When they're bad, yes. When they're based off comics books, especially.

9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
Paul Newman as Earl Long in "Blaze"

10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
Mothra vs. The Jeffersons

11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
Sheree North

12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
When the characters are those that I'd like hanging out with again and again.

13) Favorite road movie.
The Wizard of Oz

14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
The Tall T

15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
Me

16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)
The Palm Beach Story

17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
Kenneth Tobey

18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.
It explains why people are gaga over Gladiator, to which I'll never understand. Has no one seen "Ben Hur" (1959)

19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
Stop Making Sense

20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
Tatum O'Neal

21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
When people bitched about the ending of "No Country of Old Men"
saying it ended too abruptly and not taking into account the title.

22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
Les Biches. I saw it as a pimply faced teenager.

23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
2009 is only a month old, so there's nothing but shit in the swimming pool.

24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
Robby Benson

25) Favorite movie about journalism.
Zodiac

26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?
Werner Herzog and the ghost of Klaus Kinski discussing Fitzcarraldo

27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
A Perfect World

28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?
Kurtwood Smith

29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.
They'll get it wrong.

30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.
Less movies based on 80s artifacts

31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)

Out of the little bit of new stuff I saw:
1. In Bruges
2. Doomsday
3. Wall-E
4. Young@Heart
5. Happy-Go-Lucky

Thank the Gods for TCM!

BONUS QUESTION (to be answered after December 25):

32) What was your favorite movie-related Christmas gift that you received this year?
Criterion double-disc set of Yojimbo and Sanjuro

Dennis Cozzalio said...

Hi, kids! For what it's worth, my answers to this beast can be found here.

sophomorecritic said...

) What was the last movie you saw theatrically? On DVD or Blu-ray?
Frost/Nixon......Rewatched Borat, or Before the Devil Knows Your Dead
2) Holiday movies— Do you like them naughty or nice?
um.....nice?
3) Ida Lupino or Mercedes McCambridge?
no idea
4) Favorite actor/character from Twin Peaks
Miguel Ferrerr was on that show, i've never seen the show
5) It’s been said that, rather than remaking beloved, respected films, Hollywood should concentrate more on righting the wrongs of the past and tinker more with films that didn’t work so well the first time. Pretending for a moment that movies are made in an economic vacuum, name a good candidate for a remake based on this criterion.
A film noir called Detour comes to mind
6) Favorite Spike Lee joint.
25th hour
7) Lawrence Tierney or Scott Brady?
no clue who either of those guys
8) Are most movies too long?
no, but an intermission would help
9) Favorite performance by an actor portraying a real-life politician.
wierd question....john trovolta of clinton
10) Create the main event card for the ultimate giant movie monster smackdown.
skip
11) Jean Peters or Sheree North?
again, who are these guys? i know more about film than a lot of people, but damn, no clue who these two are
12) Why would you ever want or need to see a movie more than once?
i usually always enjoy the second viewing more than the most.
13) Favorite road movie.
American Graffiti or Rain Man
14) Favorite Budd Boetticher picture.
Who the hell is that? Are you just trying to rub it in that you know the name of some obscure director?
15) Who is the one person, living or dead, famous or unknown, who most informed or encouraged your appreciation of movies?
Martin Scorsesee...his BFI Scorsesee on film series
16) Favorite opening credit sequence. (Please include YouTube link if possible.)
Good question! Spiderman 2 comes to mind.....X-Men 1, many of the Bond ones are memorable, Graduate was clever, Catch Me If You Can, Tomorrow Never Dies or Casino Royale, for example.....I mean, none of the opening credit sequences in the 1950s and before were very good, they just
17) Kenneth Tobey or John Agar?
Again, two actors i don't know of. If I asked people on the street who these two are or Bud Bottinger are, i guarantee you they wouldn't know it either.
18) Jean-Luc Godard once suggested that the more popular the movie, the less likely it was that it was a good movie. Is he right or just cranky? Cite the best evidence one way or the other.
That's retarded. Every filmmaker wants to reach a wide audience, we shouldn't penalize them for doing so. You're probably one of those film snobs who doesn't like Spielberg because his films are plebian.
19) Favorite Jonathan Demme movie.
I'm beginning to think Melvin and Howard and his reimagining of Manchurian Candidate wasn't half-bad either. Certainly not Rachel Getting Married
20) Tatum O’Neal or Linda Blair?
Linda Blair
21) Favorite use of irony in a movie. (This could be an idea, moment, scene, or an entire film.)
That is a hard question. I suppose North by Northwest, 39 Steps
22) Favorite Claude Chabrol film.
Oh come on....who's that. Is he listed on some standard site like filmsite.org?
23) The best movie of the year to which very little attention seems to have been paid.
Be Kind Rewind, Quantum of Solace
24) Dennis Christopher or Robby Benson?
Yeah, if you've gathered, i don't like people who throw obscure names around as in casual conversation as if I'm supposed to be familiar with these names. Here are names that I'm familiar with:
Johnothan Demme, Hawks, Cuckor, Minelli, Foreman, Spielberg, Lean, Lester, Ridley Scott, Adrienne Lye, Gililam, Redford, Eastwood, Gibson, Scorsese, Friedkin, De Palma, Premminger, Lubitsch, Donen, Minelli, Polanski, Nicholls, Kubrick, Huston, Weir, Dabranot, Ang Lee, William Wyler, Billy Wilder, Altman, Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, Barry Levinson, Beatty, Arthur Penn, Stanley Kramer, etc. etc etc. You have to admit that you're dropping more obscure names rather non-chalantly. I find that kind of snobbish, maybe that's just me.
25) Favorite movie about journalism.
Network might be my favorite film about media. I guess you could say His Girl Friday.
26) What’s the DVD commentary you’d most like to hear? Who would be on the audio track?
Road to Perdition, for some reason
27) Favorite movie directed by Clint Eastwood.
Gran Torino, maybe. I'm awfully fond of a 70's film of his, Bronco Billy.
28) Paul Dooley or Kurtwood Smith?
Dooley
29) Your clairvoyant moment: Make a prediction about the Oscar season.
Sean Penn wins best actor, Frost/Nixon wins best editing.
30) Your hope for the movies in 2009.
not looking that far ahead
31) What’s your top 10 of 2008? (If you have a blog and have your list posted, please feel free to leave a link to the post.)
My personal list is: Frost/Nixon, Gran Torino, Slumdog, Wall-E, Doubt, Burn After Reading, Be Kind Rewind, Quantum of Solace, In Bruges, Milk.
one of my contributors wrote one out:
http://sophomorecritic.blogspot.com/2008/12/best-films-of-2008.html

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