Friday, December 13, 2013

ABC Movie Blog Challenge

Taking a day off from movie reviews, inspiration struck me in a meme sort of way. I really wanted to do an alphabet related movie meme or 30 day challenge, but finding one was more than a challenge I thought it would be. In free moments here and there, I created this meme which I hope everyone enjoys.

As all alphabet memes go, each letter is a theme or question to answer about your love of movies. Feel free to share this on your own blog, and comment with a link to your own list. I'd love to see what your answers and choices are!

Anticipating Movie of the Year
My sister relentlessly calls me a hipster for falling in love with The Fault In Our Stars that's gained enough traction for her to think it was a hipster book. Shailene Woodley will star as Hazel Grace, a young teenager diagnosed with thyroid cancer who meets Augustus Waters, a former basketball player who lost his right leg to osteosarcoma. Together, their literary passion takes them across the world in search of an author who ended her favorite dramatic novel mid-sentence. I have high hopes for this flick and is crossing my fingers that it's as humorous yet heartbreaking as the novel.

Book Adaptation I'd Love To See
I'm surprised by the lack of studios who haven't tried to eat this novel up: The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. The renowned author's only published novel centers around a young woman descending into a maddening depression, which leads her to an mental institution. Actress Julia Stiles has been attached to producing a movie adaptation but none have come to fruition.

Celebrity I'd Most Like To Meet
Dick Van Dyke. To me, no other movie starcompares. He's charming, light on his feet, does an amazingly-horribly Cockney accent which he'll own up to, and his whole career happened by one happy accident after another. He wasn't a dancer, he wasn't a singer; just a young guy who tried out for a few things here and there, eventually landing on The Dick Van Dyke Show. I would 1000% would absolutely die just standing in his presence.

Dream Director/Actor Pairing
Quentin Tarantino and Amy Adams. His work is entirely off-kilter. Depending if you like him or not, his films on paper never sound like they are going to succeed. But when you put people to his scripts and on-camera, he miraculously pulls it off every time. Amy Adams is an under-estimated talent; I feel like she could pull out a ballsy performance - like Leonardo DiCaprio in Django Unchained.

Essential Classic Film
There are probably dozens of other classic films that will soon come to mind for this category, but my brain couldn't shake Miracle in the Rain. This is an essential classic film. Shortly after the U.S. enters World War II, a shy hermetic secretary Ruth (Jane Wyman) runs into an optimistic, extroverted G.I. Arthur (Van Johnson). Slowly, a romance grows as Ruth opens up about her fears about the war before he's shipped out for duty. Thus, ensues sobbing, sobbing, and more snot-escalating tears.

Favorite Film Franchise
Not being a big fan of Star Wars (sorry), and only just discovering Star Trek, and only liking one-half of the Indiana Jones series, and not seeing any Lord of the Rings installments (yet), it's not very obvious that Harry Potter is my final answer. I think just being a fan of the series through and through, I am obsessed with this series endlessly and ceaselessly. A thesis-length explanation could be written for how each film glares with imperfections, and at the same time, blindingly perfect.

Genre I Watch The Most
Looking at the variety of genres, I thought for a long while that there was a tie between drama and comedy. Dvds on my bookshelf reveal half of them dig deep into the dark wells of the human spirit, and others that are just plain goofy and cheesy. Then I realized staring at the titles that most of them are misfits. The genre I seem to watch the most are indie-blockbusters; movies with the power behind them to make a lot of dough but end up falling to the wayside of audience perception; either straight-up rejection or pockets of loving reception.

Hidden Gem
I never would have given The Kings of Summer a second chance if it wasn't for my aunt instructing me to watch it or else (I don't know "what else" would've meant if I didn't follow through). Three teenagers build a house of their dreams in the forest to live off the land, and discover what it means to be an adult. Not "in the mood" for another sarcastic weak teen indie, I shut this out of my life. Then, I gave it a shot and was happily rewarded with a movie experience of heartfelt performances and a nostalgic trip to another teen classic, Stand by Me.

Important Moment in My Film Life
I'm unsure if there are many important moments in my film life that I can rank against each other. But upon making this theme, my heart swelled with emotions about that one time I saw all 8 Harry Potter movies over a 3-day period. Personally at the time I needed something to turn on the light in my moment of darkness, and this experience did it. An epic movie marathon, where it was just me and countless of other dress-up Potterheads coming together to web our years of nostalgia, happiness, and sadness. It was glorious, stupendous, and I'm pretty sure it was real and didn't just happen all inside my head.

Just Right Movie for A Rainy Day
This letter was honestly just another perfect opportunity to list and bring attention to You've Got Mail; one of my all-time favorites. Going a different route, I couldn't help but think about One Fine Day. An often forgotten romantic dramedy of two divorced parents forced to take care of each other's kids during an extraordinarily busy workday.  Set New York City, it's George Clooney and Michelle Pfieffer falling in love; what could be better?

Kiddie Movie I Still Shamelessly Enjoy
Move over, Disney and all your princess movies - It's Cats Don't Dance time. What's that? Never heard of this. Well, be amazed by the whimsical upbeat that is animals trying to break into Hollywood as talented swinging and dancing actors. Not only are all the animals so freaking charming, you have a pint sized Shirley Temple inspired dame - Darla Dimple - who wields as much as rage as her giant butler Max and tries to end the spotlight from dimming her fame. It's just fun, big, and loud.

Location I'd Most Like To Visit

Platform 9 3/4 from the Harry Potter series might be the most tangible location to visit. I might try to actually run through the wall and proudly land in the hospital with a concussion and broken dreams. (My back-up choices included Oz and the Star Trek Enterprise. I'll travel there in my dreams).

Marathon I First Attended
There is only so many theme parks you can go to again and again before you very slowly lose your mind in the Sunshine State (Florida). In 2010, during one humdrum college semester my sister and I stumbled upon the AMC Best Picture Showcase. Over a two week period, all of the Best Picture nominees were screened. Giving it a chance, we attended the first day where we hadn't seen any of the movies nominated for an Oscar. Having so much, we went the next week. And in 2014, it'll be (very excitedly) our fourth annual year to attend.

Netflix Movie I Actually Watched
A longtime avid watcher of Joel and Ethan Cohen movies, I'm surprised how long it took me to get around to The Big Lebowski. The movie is centered around a guy called the Dude who gets wrapped up in a strange hostage crisis and identity theft.Perhaps overcome by anticipation that the cult flick would actually live up to its hype, one night I finally succumbed to playing it on Netflix. And it certainly lives up to its confusing hilarious drug-induced reputation. Jeff Bridges is The Dude. And the Cohens are the Cohens; creating another classic that entertains the smaller movie masses for years to come.

One Movie I Saw In Theaters More Than 3x
I remember the experiences of seeing Chicago again and again. First it was with my Mom, then on my own, then with my mom and my sister, then on and on with many more other relatives. Though the musical about two murderesses in the 1920s vying for fame from within prison gets a lot of flack, I think it's one of the better musicals to come out in the last decade.

Preferred Place To Watch A New Movie
I'm not going to go all anti-streaming on everyone, but it's just my inkling cinemas won't stick around forever when we don't see newer movies in theaters. No doubt the prices are exorbitantly high, and the only way you can actually keep theaters alive is by buying from the concession stand (all ticket sales go straight back to the studios), I like the atmosphere of a theater much more than huddling around my computer at home.

Though it is more convenient for restroom breaks, talking, and watching whatever I want in my pajamas, some magical moments have taken place in a theater. (And, I think the best theater experiences have happened because it comes down to the theater you go to; find a good one!)

Quote that Inspires Me
The Dead Poets Society may hold a record of most inspirational quotes. John Keating (Robin Williams) teaches poetry at an all male college, but his lessons aren't about merely learning the words or rhythm on the page; it's about instilling that sort of passion everywhere in your life. Inspired by his rousing classes, they form their own Dead Poets Society and make substantial choices to live beyond the "routine protocol" of getting through each day. And, it always emboldens me to do the same.

Remakes (Friend or Foe?)
I'm a stout believer that every movie takes on a different perspective for the production. Once every so often, it's acceptable to see someone else's interpretation of that story - after all, stories are recycled 99.9% of the time. However, when movies are remade every single year just so the technology is updated, or if it's a shot for shot recreation of a classic, they bring nothing new to the table.  Remakes can be a friend (i.e. You've Got Mail), but most of the time they are sadly a foe with weaker direction and acting than its original - Psycho.

Snack I Enjoy Most
Popcorn used to be a friend of mine until strangely my digestive sensibilities destroyed that buttery fresh relationship. Popped up a new snack: trail mix. Deliciously sweet combination of peanuts, raisins, M&Ms and all kinds of chippy goodness, I can eat a bag of these every movie - if I let myself...which I usually do.

Twist That Boggled My Mind
Am I the only one who didn't see the twist coming with Atonement? Set during World War II, a precocious girl Briony (Saoirse Ronan) claims to have witnessed a brutal rape of a friend by a family employee Robbie (James McAvoy). In love with her sister Cecilia (Keira Knightley,) their relationship is ripped apart by prison and war. Driven by mystery, we venture through time and Briony's revelations about what happens to Robbie, Cecilia and their relationship; does anyone survive this tragedy? I won't ruin it for you - it broke my wee little heart.

Unapologetic Fanperson For:
I'm pretty sure he had me at Jack Dawson in Titanic, but to be honest I was so young when the disaster flick was released, I don't know the exact moment my fangirl heart was captured. It could've been in Romeo and Juliet, or The Departed, or Shutter Island. And everything in-between. I am pretty sure though that I torture my family with my general scary obsession for all things Leonardo DiCaprio. (Win an Oscar for heaven's sakes, man!!)

Very Excited For Award Show Season?
Award show season is always tricky. One part of me is uber excited to see Hollywood gather for some shameless (and shameful) slapping on each others' backs. I enjoy rallying behind my top movie and acting picks of the year. On the other hand, it's also very angering; Hollywood has their favorites, studios buy wins, and sometimes more transformative films and performances are overlooked. For the most part I try to chill out and look forward to a wide range of artistic and valuable films.

Wish I Never Watched...
My tastes compared to my family's are usually right on point; we enjoy all the same comedies, dramas, and every genre in between. Then, there's always those fateful days when I pick something that just turns out to be an atrocious lackluster. The Forgotten, starring Julianne Moore, searching for her son that has something to do with aliens taking him, is one of those movies. It's not that it's so boring I could cry just thinking about it, but just that my sister never lets me forget the day I forced her to see this over something else she really wanted to see.

XXX Movie I Watched At A Really Young Age
(R or NC-17!)
My grandma was absolutely insane. She had a love of horror films but never really any concept of whether or not my sister and I should see them at such young ages. Visiting her on every other weekend, it was a guarantee we would watch horror movies like the Child's Play series. I don't remember in particular having any sort of nightmares, thank heavens. But I just recall this really weird doll being alive, murderous, and something I shouldn't be watching.

Your latest movie-related obsession
OMG, Batman. Having grown up more with the Christopher Nolan series starring Christian Bale as the Caped Crusader, I was never really familiar with the previous Batman installments. I had seen them when I was younger but was never head over heels. And then, oh television - one day recently there was a marathon of George Clooney, Michael Keaton, and Val Kilmer, and I began to understand all of their versions. I took my viewing a bit further by reading a tremendous amount of fascinating essays that really dig into the core of those movies, and I've just been absolutely obsessed ever since.

(name a movie that has put you to sleep)
Watchmen, based off of Alan Moore's graphic novel, trails a group of ex-super heros coming together again to put an end to one of their own's disastrous plans. As much people contend over J.J. Abrams overuse of lens flare, I really loathe Zak Snyder's love affair with slow-motion. From 300 to Watchmen and Sucker Punch, every frame moves slower than a snail's pace. Sometimes I just pass out from boredom.

No comments:

Post a Comment