Monthly Archives: July 2010
I’ve decided it’s time I share with my dutiful readers my beloved DVD collection. A few things to start with; firstly, I organize my DVDs chronologically by when they were first released in theaters. I definitely have the years right and try to have the order of films within that year as close to right as possible (I’m not 100% anal about it). I’ve done it this way ever since I first had a pitiful DVD collection of about 10 films. Now it’s just under 300 and I still keep it that way. Before you ask, yes I can find any DVD I have at any given time. I think about films based on the year they come out and thus I organize them that way. It often confuses the casual film watcher, but I know there’s at least a few of you out there who would have no trouble finding something in my collection. Secondly, this collection contains classic films, indie, art house, guilty pleasures, childhood favorites, things people bought me that I’d never seen before and a handful of films I haven’t actually seen but saw in the $3 bin at Big Lots and thought “what the hell?” Thirdly, like I said some of these films were gifts I hadn’t asked for, some are gifts I had, some are from Amazon, A LOT are from Amoeba/Rasputin in Berkeley/San Francisco and most recently a lot have come from the $5 bin at Wal-Mart and the $3 bin at Big Lots. I cannot say enough about the $3 bin at Big Lots. I’ve found both guilty pleasures and amazing classics in that bin. I highly recommend it. Lastly, there are so many films that I love that I don’t own. For proof, I submit to you my Amazon wish list (well, one of five) that contains roughly 150 films. “On with the list!” you say. And on with the list I shall go. But first, here’s a crappy camera phone photo of the film part of my DVD collection. (I’m going to list my TV on DVD, though I won’t post a picture)
Mia: Don’t you hate that?
Mia: Uncomfortable silences. Why do we feel it’s necessary to yak about bullshit in order to be comfortable?
Vincent: I don’t know. That’s a good question.
Mia: That’s when you know you’ve found somebody special. When you can just shut the fuck up for a minute and comfortably enjoy the silence.
Ren: You like Men At Work?
Willard: What men?
Ren: Men at work.
Willard: Well where do they work?
Ren: No, they’re a music group.
Willard: Well what do they call themselves?
Ren: Oh no! What about the Police?
Willard: What about ’em?
Ren: You ever heard them?
Willard: No, but I seen them.
Ren: Where, in concert?
Willard: No, behind you.
We often hear about an actor’s range and praise them for working in a variety of genres, etc. Rarely, however, do we hear the same praise for directors. Sam Mendes is one of those directors who never does the same thing twice. His debut film, 1999’s American Beauty was a slice of life family drama. It went on to win five Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director. His second film, 2002’s Road To Perdition was a period crime drama. In 2005 he made the dark comedy/war drama Jarhead. Three years later was the 2008 literary adaptation/period drama Revolutionary Road, which he followed up less than six months later with the indie dramedy Away We Go. Each of these films is so different from the other, but what they all have in common is Mendes’ strong direction, resulting in a plethora of amazing, complicated, compelling performances.
Whenever I think about the 1995 Oscar race I smile a little. It was such a strange and varied year. Up for Best Picture you had a foreign language film – Il Postino, an Oscar-bait period classic literature adaptation – Sense and Sensibility, a slice of American History – Apollo 13, a historical epic – Braveheart (it won) and a fable-esque adaptation of a beloved children’s novel – Babe. I still haven’t seen Il Postino, but I love all four of the other films on this list. Babe, however, will always have a special place in my heart. I read the book when I was in third grade and the film came out when I was in fourth grade – making it the very first film I’d ever seen wherein I’d read the book beforehand. I was so excited to see it and it did not disappoint. I even noticed things like the field where the sheep dog trials took place being named “Kingsmith Fairgrounds” – the author of the book is named Dick King-Smith. This is truly a magical film and I don’t know a single person who’s seen it who doesn’t at least like it, if not love it. It even has a 98% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. In the end it was nominated for seven Academy Awards – Best Visual Effects (it won), Best Art Direction/Set Decoration, Best Film Editing, Best Supporting Actor – James Cromwell, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Director – Chris Noonan and Best Picture.
Marion: It always fascinated me how people go from loving you madly to nothing at all, nothing. It hurts so much. When I feel someone is going to leave me, I have a tendency to break up first before I get to hear the whole thing. Here it is. One more, one less. Another wasted love story. I really love this one. When I think that it’s over, that I’ll never see him again like this… well yes, I’ll bump into him, we’ll meet our new boyfriend and girlfriend, act as if we had never been together, then we’ll slowly think of each other less and less until we forget each other completely. Almost. Always the same for me. Break up, break down. Drunk up, fool around. Meet one guy, then another, fuck around. Forget the one and only. Then after a few months of total emptiness start again to look for true love, desperately look everywhere and after two years of loneliness meet a new love and swear it is the one, until that one is gone as well. There’s a moment in life where you can’t recover any more from another break-up. And even if this person bugs you sixty percent of the time, well you still can’t live without him. And even if he wakes you up every day by sneezing right in your face, well you love his sneezes more than anyone else’s kisses.
This list is twenty-one films that were nominated for multiple Oscars, including several that were nominated for Best Director, yet somehow missed out on a Best Picture nomination. I’m starting in 1951 because I went all the way down to 1927 and mostly, until 1951, the best films managed to get nom’d for Best Picture. I think this mostly had to do with all the years wherein ten films were nominated for the top prize. Although, last year when there were ten slots again there were several films I would have nom’d over say, The Blind Side. I’m not going to talk about any of those though, because that would take up almost the whole post. Instead, I have twenty-one films from 1951 to 2008 that I think should have gotten one of the Best Picture slots of their year.