Friday, April 5, 2013

I'll miss you, Roger.

I don't have a lot to say that hasn't been said. There have been some truly beautiful words written about him, which he is so deserving of. I think it's something that I might need a while to really get my thoughts together about. Especially to be relevant to this blog at all.

I'm going to miss him so much. Roger Ebert was a really great man - a fantastic film great, a unbelievable writer, a genuinely good person who cared deeply for others, and an awesome inspiration.  
Had one for Ebert last night. Not sure if it was as good as he remembered it to be - but as someone who didn't eat meat for the last 13 years and only started again about a week or so ago...that was a damn good burger. 

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Rear Window

Hey, a real post! So, Rear Window, directed in 1954 by Alfred Hitchcock, is what I ended up watching today. If I was doing this in any sort of order, I would have watched The Leopard, but that's long and I'm tired and my back is feeling wonky, so I had the internet pick something shorter. Plus, I sort of felt like watching this way more.

Probably we all know the plot of this movie. It's been referenced and remade many times. Two notable examples being Body Double (which I think I watched simply because of how much it's referenced in the book American Psycho) and Disturbia (which I didn't see but looked like it was about as awesome as a box of farts). Even though Rear Window is familiar, I personally have always found that it's still really tense and exciting to watch. I mean, I know what happens in the most tension-filled scenes, and I still find it makes me squirmy. We all know Hitchcock is amazing at tension. Can I contribute something new to this discussion? We will find out.

Excuses, excuses.

Alright, internet. Get your shoes on! I'm actually making a post. About a Great Movie! I didn't want to watch The Leopard which is like five hours long, so I let the internet decide between the two other Great Movies I had on DVD from Netflix - Rear Window or The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari. The lazy poll resulted in the selection of Rear Window (much thanks to those who texted or came into my goon laboratory to tell me). A post about it is coming up after the film is over & I have stuffed my face with Vietnamese food and white wine.

"Why has she not posted anything for so long?" you might be wondering. Unfortunately I injured my back right after Thanksgiving, and it was pretty painful and dumb. The sort of serious business medications they prescribe you for stuff like that are not so great for movie watching and blog postin'. I was lucky if I could stay awake past 8 p.m. before the combination of muscle relaxers, painkillers, and physical therapy knocked me out. My physical therapists were awesome, though, and managed to fix me. At least I wasn't still going through the Great Movies books. Now that I'm sort of back to normal (that's pretty relative of a term), it seemed like a good time to get back to something that really matters.

Anyway, I wanted to make a post explaining myself, so I didn't clutter up the movie post with bitching and moaning about my strange adeptness at injuring myself. So there you have it.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Nashville

This is literally going to be the worst post ever because I didn't learn, apparently, that I need to post about a movie right after I watch it. I seriously finished watching this movie last Monday night and I've put off writing about it, because I don't really know what to say and I really have no reason to rush. That's pretty awesome to say, though - I could take like, over an entire week to write a post because whatever. 

So, forever ago I watched Nashville, directed by Robert Altman in 1975. I sort of hated and sort of loved the movie. I hated it because I hate country music, especially the kind that I had to listen to for three hours over the course of the film. I liked the ending of it, though, where all the different characters came together and interacted. It's one of those things where I wouldn't have the satisfying ending if I didn't sit through the rest of it, but I still just didn't really care too much about it overall. I feel really lazy saying I just didn't really care for the music so I didn't care about the movie, but eh, it's pretty much how I feel.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

What's Next?

So, if you've been reading my posts lately, you might have noticed something I snuck into yesterday's movie post - Yojimbo is technically the last movie out of Ebert's books. (!!)
"What does that mean?" you might be asking yourself. "Is this stupid project over or not?"
Well, yes and no. Mostly no.
 

Monday, November 7, 2011

Yojimbo

Hey, did you know that this is the last movie out of Ebert's books? Probably not, but I do, since I eat, sleep, and breathe these movies. :) I felt like I had to share. So, today's movie is Yojimbo, directed by Akira Kurosawa in 1961. I guess it's his most famous film, but I wouldn't really know that. It's quite good, though. It's based, I read, on a few different Dashell Hammett novels such as The Glass Key and Red Harvest. I'm pretty sure I read Red Harvest, but for some reason or another I can't really remember. I was a great student, you know?

Regardless of how much I actually learned in college, Yojimbo is pretty great. Samurai movies and Western films have always had a lot in common, but here, Kurosawa went out of his way to add in Western elements. Later, Sergio Leone would make Fistful of Dollars, which is, I've heard, extremely similar. I only point this out. I guess, to underline how much this movie is like a Western, since I think that's a neat aspect of the movie.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

W.R.: Mysteries of the Organism

You'll have to forgive me for any strangeness in my writing - I'm still pretty fuzzy from this cold. I tried to rest as much as possible today, but it's hard, there's a lot to do! I really can't miss work, since I have no sick time and I'm way too busy - probably why I got sick to begin with, what with how stress ruins your immune system and all that. I'm not sure that today's actual movie is going to get watched - I had planned on watching on Netflix instant, but all the subtitles are cut off and I can't read them. Might have to just move it to the end and get a disc.

Today I watched W.R.: Mysteries of the Organism, directed by DuĊĦan Makavejev in 1971. I don't really know if I understood anything in the movie, possibly exacerbated by the fact that colds make me feel pretty out of it, but I sort of liked it. Most people I know would be probably put off by the film, but I'm not really the type of person who is shocked by nudity or sexuality, I guess. I probably was more confused by the movie because I'm not familiar with Wilhelm Reich, who has like, a mini-documentary going on in the film.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Sick.

Came down with a horrible cold - just one of those days where you wake up feeling totally sick even though you felt fine the night before. Since I'm a little out of it from working and too much Sudafed, I'm going to watch WR: Mysteries of the Organism tomorrow when I am hopefully feeling better. I'm hitting the Gatorade and Emergen-c and Throat Coat tea pretty hard so I have high hopes.

Woodstock

Not really looking forward to being at work all day tomorrow, but it will be nice and probably stress-relieving to be able to get stuff done without interruption. Hopefully it goes quick! I'm glad to be home, now, though, and thought I'd be lazy and write this post at almost 3am in my warm bed.

So, earlier I watched the director's cut of Woodstock, directed in 1970 by Michael Wadleigh. I only mention that I watched that version because I think it bumps up the running time to almost 4 hours. Sounds a little awful, yes? It wasn't so bad. Once it started, I was really into it, and I really liked the editing and all of the musical performances. It was really cool to watch something where it had so much music, maybe 60%, so it was pretty relaxing and easy to watch. I must admit I don't know anything about Woostock other than what exists in cultural consciousness, so it was really neat to actually be able to see the crowds, see the people, and watch the performances. It felt like I was there, except with less bad acid. Yay!

A Woman's Tale

Sorry I didn't get to post this last night. I was honestly so tired that I was falling asleep while I was trying to read Ebert's essay. I figured I could either do it late, or post a garbled mess instead. I hate being so tired all the time, but man, things are stressful - in life and work. Then I have the project on top of that, and it's been pretty hard. I don't want to reduce the number of movies per week because I'm so close to being done!

Anyway, yesterday I watched A Woman's Tale, directed by Paul Cox in 1991. It's a very good movie, and a very sad movie. It's one of the few movies that deals with death in such a direct and honest way. This is coming from someone who has, for better or for worse, watched people die in documentaries on physician-assisted suicide, and enjoyed SICK. This was not nearly as blunt as either of those things, but a far cry from what we normally see in Hollywood.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Withnail & I

Ok, keeping this short so I can go to bed. Man, sometimes when it gets late like this, I wish I could just do like, a 3-sentence post to sum up my feelings. Alas.

Today I watched Withnail & I, directed by Bruce Robinson in 1987. It's a different sort of film, but I really enjoyed it. I really, really liked the characters and I had a blast watching them. Withnail and his friend ("I") were really funny and I liked their little escapades. I mean, it wasn't like it was constantly funny - there was that weird nagging feeling that if these were real people, their behavior would be incredibly concerning. However, since they weren't, I found myself enjoying in on a surface level on more than one occasion.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?

Much to the shock of pretty much everyone I know, I've never seen today's movie - Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? directed by Robert Aldrich in 1962.
I was expecting something sort of boring or dull, mostly because it had such a long running time, and I wanted to be driving around in my new car instead of stuck in front of the TV again. However, I was really surprised by how awesome this movie is! It's legitimately scary and weird, and I loved the performances from both Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. I wasn't expecting it to be...I don't know, actually good. There was just something about the story and the performances that really stuck with me. I loved that both main characters were women, as well. Not because I'm having a "the wimmins!" kind of thing, but because it's more rare, I think, to see actresses take roles like this. It's just a really good movie all-around, and I really enjoyed watching it.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Werckmeister Harmonies

I was really glad to have a day off today - I got a lot done, and was able to get everything set so I can go pick up my car tonight. It was nice to actually get a movie finished before 10 p.m, too. I have to go in earlier on Saturday than I thought, but really, it was worth it.

Today's movie is strange and long, but I sort of liked it. I watched Werkmeister Harmonies, directed by Bela Tarr in 2000. I remember wanting to go to some film class on this movie when I first was at DePaul, but I was lazy. I then had the movie on my Netflix queue for the next five years. Glad I finally got to see it. It was really a weird movie, not like anything I've ever seen before. It's slow, moody, and felt like a nightmare. I could see that this could be really irritating to watch if you didn't get into it. It was odd - I felt like I didn't want to be watching it, but I really wanted to finish it and see what happened.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Waking Life

Today I went out and bought some dry shampoo to try - the color I dyed my hair wears quickly, so the less I can wash it, the better. However, I'm an everyday-wash sort of person, and I've always hated having to skip a day or two (I used to dye my hair all sorts of unnatural colors but I would always hate trying to preserve the color. I'd either re-dye it a lot or make my own shampoo with dye in it to try to extend the color). I tried the one I got today and it was amazing. Life-changing amazing, because now I feel like I can keep my hair weird colors and not have it be gross 50% of the time. Sorry, boring, but I'm really excited!

Earlier I watched Waking Life, which was directed by Richard Linklater in 2001. I remember watching this in high school with my friend Jon. I remember slouching on his couch afterward and talking endlessly about things the movie made us think of. I also think we dozed off a few times during it, but it still made a big impression on me. I love dreams, and I was really into trying to lucid dream in high school. I also just thought some of the conversations in the film were really profound, and I like that it actually created some good conversations for me and my friend.