Thursday 16 January 2014

Mammoth Movie Meme Part Four

It's finally here: the epic, awe-inspiring conclusion to the world's greatest, most exciting meme EVER. Or something like that. Anyway, here are the final 15 questions and some typically evasive, waffling answers:
46. A film that always makes you laugh.
Just one? That's tricky. I've already mentioned Withnail And I, one of the ultimate British comedies, so for this question I'll go for one of my all-time fave American comedies  -  Ghostbusters. I'm sure I don't need to tell you how wonderful that Saturday Night Live -meets- Lovecraft movie is. So, instead I'll just post a totally gratuitous pic of the lovely Sigourney Weaver...
( You're welcome... )

47. Movies that you think everyone should watch (not necessarily your favourites).
Um... anything by Spielberg, Coppolla, David Lean, Powell & Pressburger, Nic Roeg, Scorsese, Hitchcock, Woody Allen, Ang Lee  -  that's a good start, anyway...
Oh, and Dougal And The Blue Cat...
48. A movie that took you a couple of viewings to appreciate.
 Donnie Darko. Not because I didn't like it on first viewing, but because it was such a dazzlingly bewildering, but rewarding experience. The kind of film you watch then want to immediately see again to try and grasp all the twists and nuances. James has recently watched this for the first time and also had his mind blown by it. ( He's getting into some surreal stuff lately  -  he's just watched my Twin Peaks box-set too. ) Hmmm... I'll have to dig the DVD out...
49. A book you want to see adapted to the big screen.
There have been a few tentative movie adaptations which I would have loved to see but that never got made  -  David Fincher's Rendezvous With Rama, Spielberg's The Talisman  -  but one novel which is really crying out for the mega-bucks blockbuster treatment is Dan Simmons' epic Space Opera Hyperion / The Fall Of Hyperion.
 A huge, sprawling tale of Artificial Intelligences, galactic war, poetry, religion, buildings that travel backwards in time, and the awesome, godlike Shrike, the Hyperion Cantos would really work best as a series of films, preferably with a suitably gifted film-maker at the helm, someone capable of telling a human story on an epic canvas. Anyone got Peter Jackson's number?

50. A book you really, really, really don’t want to see made into a film.
Mein Kampf...
51. Favourite child performance.
David Bradley in Ken Loach's Kes  -  a raw, painfully realistic, heart-breaking performance, once seen never forgotten...

52. Favourite pre-code.
I imagine this refers to the censorious Hays Production Code which emasculated Hollywood movies for decades. I really haven't got an answer for this one.
53. Favourite silent film.
Uncultured slob that I am, I've never watched many silent films. I'll cheat here and say my favourite is a compilation of all the best, most iconic images from three classic silent genre films: The Phantom Of The Opera, Nosferatu and Metropolis. You know which scenes I mean  -  underground unmasking, staircase shadows and new electric life...
54. Favourite coming of age film.
Stand By Me, without a doubt. It's a beautifully observed look at teenage boys on the verge of adulthood, with all their concerns and adventures, and is probably the closest any movie has come to capturing Stephen King's unique voice.
55. Favourite superhero film.
Recently I've loved many of the Marvel movies ( Thor and Thor: The Dark World, Avengers Assemble, Captain America: The First Avenger  ) and James has just mentioned the fantastic Scott Pilgrim vs The World which is a kind of superhero film, I guess... but... for nostalgia's sake and for pure comic book  fun my ultimate favourite superhero films are Superman: The Movie and Superman II. ( Just like the first two Godfather movies, I can't separate them. ) Even though they have their faults ( especially in California ha ha ), these two films still work for me as iconic evocations of the superhero ethos.
And, yes, I still believe a ( Super)man can fly. RIP Christopher Reeve.

56. Best cinematography.
So many films to choose from, but I'll go with the amazing work of Gordon Willis from The Godfather and The Godfather Part II, truly painting with light and shadow.

57. Movies you know you should watch but you can’t bring yourself to do it?
A strange question. There are many, many movies I know I should watch but haven't got round to or haven't had the opportunity to see. But "can't bring yourself to do it..."? The only example I can think of is The Sound Of Music. It's a film that is easy to make fun of ( Julie Andrews, nuns, whiskers on kittens etc. ) but I've never seen it properly so shouldn't really comment. We recently bought the DVD for Sophie so I could watch it... I suppose... hmmm...
58. Favourite genres.
Well, Mexican wrestling movies, obviously. No? OK, I'm lying  -  I haven't seen a luchador movie in my life... but that's a cool poster. Anyone who reads this blog and / or has trawled through this Mammoth Movie Meme series must have a fairly good idea of the kind of stuff I like by now...

59. Least favourite genres.
What I refer to as "Cowboy" Musicals  -  Oklahoma, Seven Brides For Seven Brothers, Showboat etc.  -  and Torture Porn -  such as the Saw and Hostel franchises. And who ever thought those two genres would ever be mentioned in the same sentence?
60. Biggest movie pet peeve
Sorry, but I'm not going to end this Meme with something negative. I love movies
( well, good ones anyway... and a few crappy ones ) and love the experience of going to the cinema to be transported to another world, to share the visions and ideas of film-makers... and to possibly buy some ridiculously over-priced hot-dogs :-)
So I'll just leave you with this...
That moment when you've just seen something you've never seen before, up there on the silver screen...


Kal said...

Great post. You reminded me of some films I haven't seen in awhile and some I have never seen. I love those old silent German movies too. They are just that side of weird, those Germans.

Simon B said...

Thanks Cal. Glad you've enjoyed these posts. It was a bit of a long haul but I got there in the end :-)


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