At least according to certain members of Empire Magazine…
I feel Casablanca is ranked entirely too low, but that’s just me.
This time of year is traditional a dead zone for movie complexes everywhere. We dealing with the post-coitus comedown following the Academy Awards as Hollywood prepares to bombard our senses with the shit they pump out for the summer blockbuster season. Oooohh… ahhhhh… hold your applause please. Once or twice during this season, something really awesome will pop onto the silver screen. This season, I’m looking forward to Sucker Punch. It looks to be a brilliant eat-some-popcorn, take-your-brain-out flick. See, I differentiate between flicks and films though both have their merit.
A flick is something you watch to be genuinely entertained. A film is something you watch to be moved. Both can elevate the art form and both can be tremendous fun. Let me explain: Sports Movies: One watches Major League to get a boatload of laughs and a happy ending. No, not THAT sort of happy ending. Get your mind out of the gutter. Watch Major League to laugh. Watch Rocky to be genuinely moved. Rocky is full of the triumph of the human spirit set in Philadelphia. Most of the film takes place outside of the ring.
Action films: Watch Raiders of the Lost Ark for a unique thrill. Do NOT watch the most recent installment of the Indiana Jones franchise. Raiders is the shit. It creates one of the single most memorable characters in all of film lore, is full of great lines, hysterical moments and so on. But it’s not The Dark Knight, which is actually a film. See what I did there? The Dark Knight is a film because it expanding the action genre, brought it into a more complete vision. A ton of scenes were shot in IMAX, which is utterly stunning to watch. It doesn’t have a happy ending, in fact, it has a gutwrenching one. The Dark Knight is a monster, one of the rare action films that racks in scads of dough at the box office and earned an Academy Award. R.I.P Heath Ledger. See what I mean.
So, since the Criterion Collection respects both, I’m digging into them. Some folks think the Criterion Collection is only for film snobs, but I disagree. Youth of the Beast by my man Seijun Suzuki is a prime example of a bepop gangster pic. It’s overblown (for its time) and utterly ridiculous. It happens to be a Japanese movie and is a personal favorite of Quentin Tarantino. Dig? The picture below is what I’m on now. The cover art is the tits, the film is a labyrinthine plot twist and MILES FUCKING DAVIS did the soundtrack.
Simple as that.
A list by Mindy Kaling (a.k.a. Kelly from The Office). My favorite:
The Ethereal Weirdo
The smart and funny writer Nathan Rabin coined the term Manic Pixie Dream Girl to describe this archetype after seeing Kirsten Dunst in the movie “Elizabethtown.” This girl can’t be pinned down and may or may not show up when you make concrete plans with her. She wears gauzy blouses and braids. She likes to dance in the rain and she weeps uncontrollably if she sees a sign for a missing dog or cat. She might spin a globe, place her finger on a random spot, and decide to move there. The Ethereal Weirdo appears a lot in movies, but nowhere else. If she were from real life, people would think she was a homeless woman and would cross the street to avoid her. But she is essential to the male fantasy that even if a guy is boring he deserves a woman who will find him fascinating and perk up his dreary life by forcing him to go skinny-dipping in a stranger’s pool.
Wes Anderson was done it again.