#1 | Posted: 12/30/2009 05:27 | Post subject: Pour your heart out (film)...
Like the album thread in the music section, I want you to type in as much detail as you can possibly type why your favorite film is your favorite film. If there's a really close second or third, go ahead and present those as well but don't let it take away from any of your description of your favorite. I know there's been a top films thread already, but this thread is dedicated to the description of your favorite film, and maybe a runner up, or your objective favorite and a personal favorite. Also, if anyone is interested in creating a similar thread for art and literature in this forum, I think that might be interesting as well. N.B. THIS IS NOT A LIST, and the intro to the music/albums thread is probably better...
Okay, no lists so I choose the film that I could watch anytime and have watched many times over.
Weird choice but a film that I have loved and continue to watch every year. Not the greatest film I have ever watched (cue Blade Runner or North By Northwest), but a film that I discover new things about each time.
Those unfamiliar, the film is based on the characters from Cluedo: the boardgame. Strange premise but when you think Ridley Scott wants to do Monopoly, then it sits well with most. The plot revolves around the 6 characters from the boardgame with the inclusion of Wadsworth the butler (Tim Curry). A mysterious host, Mr Boddy (Lee Ving) has invited them to his mansion to expose them. As it happens, the lights go out, Mr Boddy is dead and that's when the comedy ensues and the plot gets thicker.
A brilliant cast of 80s comic stalwarts - Tim Curry, Christopher Lloyd, Lesley Ann Warren, Martin Mull, Michael McKean, Eileen Brennan and the showstopper that is Madeline Kahn. Curry and Kahn (as a dark and tempermental Mrs. White) are my picks for the best on screen. The cast work off each other so well, aided by a fantastic script.
example (in discussion about her late husbands):
Mrs. White: Well, it's a matter of life after death. Now that he's dead, I have a life.
Wadsworth: But, he was your second husband. Your first husband also disappeared.
Mrs. White: But that was his job. He was an illusionist.
Wadsworth: But he never reappeared!
Mrs. White: [admittedly] He wasn't a very good illusionist.
SLIGHT SPOILERS AHEAD!
Another example (trying to find the murderer):
Colonel Mustard: This is war, Peacock. Casualties are inevitable. You can not make an omelet without breaking eggs, every cook will tell you that.
Mrs. Peacock: But look what happened to the cook!
Simple dialogue but I laugh everytime. I gues it is in the delivery.
The real highlight is the last third of the film. Wadsworth tries to deduce the evening's proceedings and in the DVD version of Clue, three alternate endings are possible. I don't favour one ending over the other as that is what the film is all about: it's a game and anything can happen.
The film is Jonathan Lynn's (Whole Nine Yards) directorial debut and was co-written with John Landis (director of MJ's Thriller, American Werewolf In London).
I recommend this to anyone out there, young or old. You'll find some humour in there (I hope).
Next time I might talk about my personally favourite written film Brick. But that's another time. _________________ Bandcamp ~ Facebook ~ Tumblr ~ Twitter
A great story with great acting. My favorite actor big MB. I love the ending more than any other movie. I've been watching it since I was just a little kid because my parents loved it and actually introduced it to me as a kiddo cause they're crazy parents and we're Italian and into gang type of movies. I love the old movies too, I prefer the classics compared to the new CGI shit.
Overall I cant explain it, but the movie is the shit to me. _________________ And I stare at the sun.
And it leaves me Blind.
If there ever was a film that rose to the intellectualism of art or literature or whatever- and remained not only viewable but damn good- this was it. Take a look at most discussions of this film and you'll hear about: how the size of the boxing ring changes drastically to reflect the mood and conditions surrounding the fight; how every time La Motta is in his housewith his (initially) mistress Vicky there's always a catholic symbol in the shot, amplifying his already vocally expressed Catholic guilt; and lastly, how humans are just animals, violent and sexual and questionably useless.
This last point is very close to my heart because alot of people seem to think humans are special, and we are somewhat unique, but really we are just a dominant organism that breeds and dies and will eventually go extinct and be forgotten. Everything we do is as useless as we think a squirrels daily toils are. Anything that expresses similar views is close to me and Raging Bull hits the mark. Everyone is excessively violent, from the boxers squirting excessive amounts of blood to La Motta beating his wife and brother to the Copa Cabana fight to the fight that goes on after the first match in the crowd and this violence shows the more base animalisic side of humans. Also, La Motta wears leopard print; animals roar and scream and yelp while the fights go on (literally, elephants and lions and horses are sampled); several long, key scenes and shots (such as the pool scene when La Motta first meets Vicky) are shot behind cages or bars; La Motta is called an animal by his neighbor, his brother, and Vicky; and then there is the last scene with La Motta, in jail having become a symbol of decadence, crying and denying he's an animal. La Mottas constant obsession with dominance is also in line with this interpretation. He's an animal, realizes he's an animal and despises himself for being as base as a dog.
That's just the symbolism; this film has the best sound, best theme (the opening intermezzo), best cinematography, best directing, and best palatable experimentation of any film I've seen. Also, all the actors are pretty damn good, and De Niro is noted in this film for being the first actor to undergo extreme physical changes for a film (he gained at least 50 pounds).
Also, theres a certain 'devil without a care or cause,' nihilistic air about La Motta while the guilt of all his sins weighs on him with his Catholic guilt, creating a very interesting, liminal character.
I know that was a long and pretentious description, but that's why its my favorite. Raging Bull overtook Taxi Driver (1976) as my favorite film about a year ago and two other favorites are There Will Be Blood (2007) and Revolutionary Road (2009). Currently I think Revolutionary Road has overtaken Taxi Driver for second, but it's still nowhere near Raging Bull.
I originally started this post to try to lull out a couple film people here to present me with some similar description of another equally deep film, if you were wondering my motive. Blade Runner was mentioned, and though not as aesthetically pleasing to me in all aspects as Raging Bull, it is just as thought provoking; the only negative is that while the themes of Raging Bull are mostly reserved for literature (and sometimes music), the themes of Blade Runner are in most science fiction media, it just presents them in the best way.
I disagree that Blade runner only uses science fiction media themes.
I must admit that this fiilm is my favourite from the off, so I am a little biased toward it.
it is a real science fiction film (wheras many that present themselves as such are little more than fantasy films with flashing lights)- the distinction being in my mind that genuine science fiction can only be told in the particular way it is presented, and may not exist without the speculative consideration of the "science" aspect.
...Star Wars, for instance, is fantasy, not science fiction, because the story is not dependent upon it's being set in a galaxy far far away- indeed it can and has been told in The Hidden Fortress, but Blade runner can only exist in a world where such things as androids exist (Wow, how much of a geek do I sound?!!!!)
Science Fiction is the modern expression of philosophy, you may also say it is exploring new concepts of humanity... Blade Runner= What Does it mean to be Human, to be Alive? the Creator/creation relationship.
It also forms a kind of resolution to Paradise Lost, the Redemption of the fallen angel...the film is littered with references to it.
While the film radically alters the story in the book, the central theme remains, and Phillip K Dick is the modern great philosopher in this way, as he consistently delivered profound speculations on the human condition.
I should have clarified. Most good science fiction films touch on what is covered in Blade Runner. Whenever you have robots, questions of identity, mind-body relationship, the existence of a god, free will and most philosophical questions can easily be toyed around with. You can't deny that addressing these concepts is central to good science fiction (unless its just so damn good like Star Wars, though it does have its own philosophy). Also, Star Wars is science fiction because it relies on robotic technology as well (e.g. the mind-body question pops up as you realize most of Vader is robotic (and Luke's hand, etc.)); any story can address any theme in any time period (i.e. the themes of Blade Runner don't require robots), but with technology in science fiction the philosophical problems are easier for most to recognize and digest (e.g. most people accept there is a mind-body/identity problem when someone's personality is put into what is mostly a robot, but they don't realize that they can't prove they are themselves when they first wake up in the morning).
I've noticed that you've been posting some weird digression on stuff (like genres) around the forums lately, badfaith; no offense intended, but think about stuff awhile before you say it.
Anyway, sorry if that offended you, but I want to hear about your favorite film. If it is BladeRunner, please expand what you started before.
No offence taken. (I don't take offence at anyhthing I read here)
But I do digress I know- often it's late and I'm tired when i respond, and those thoughts that buzz around my head on a given subject pour forth disordered, and without focus... like a bag of jigsaw bits on a table.
I shall try to edit myself a little better in future before writing.
Will muster some energy and structured reasoning before I expand on Blade Runner... which is my favourite film... as it says great things more eloquently than I do.
But I must (briefly) point out that the star wars story is not dependent on those technological aspects (The Hidden Fortress), they are incidental to the plot, and are only visual devices used as metaphorical indicators of the degradation of the integrity of the character, but with the story of 2001, Blade runner, and Alien etc. the metaphor IS the story.
The two movies that made me want to make movies (I'm a senior film major with a focus on documentary) Harlan County, USA...The Seventh Seal. Don't really feel like babbling bout them, just wanna say they both changed my life, and if you haven't seen them you really should.
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